Joshua Becker writes about de-cluttering the past:
Your thoughts tend to dwell in the past as the things around you force your mind to reminisce. Solutions tend to be rooted in the past as the things around you conjure up the same old thought-processes. Additionally, our minds are tied to the past because there is no available space for anything new.
Start in your bedroom.
An efficient method to reduce clutter in your home is to practice the reverse hanger test. Are you familiar with it?
Go through your closet and turn around every item of clothing so hangers face back to front.
Whenever you wear something, return it to the closet with the hanger faced correctly. If you try something on but don’t wear it, keep it in reverse.
After a month or six months or whatever time period you choose at the beginning of the test, sell or donate everything hung on those reverse hangers.
Bring your friends into the bedroom.
What if people were privy to the same test?
Think about every person you follow or are friends with on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and other networking sites.
Write every name on an index card and stack them in a box. Whenever you talk to a person, remove their card.
After a period of time, what if you terminated those inactive connections? How many people you’re holding onto would you be forced to remove?
You say yes to me and I say yes to you — and then what? Do we ever talk? Do we ever need the other person or are we clutter to each other’s so-called influence of connections? Remove the clutter and be free.
Some might think this notion ludicrous as sites such as LinkedIn enable you to be friends with someone you met at a conference or once sat behind in high school.
True, that person could be a useful connector. But if you’re holding onto a connection that has no present meaning then you might as well hold onto every shirt you buy even if you never wear it.
Learn the power of goodbye.