Piled up with old newspapers

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act but a habit.”
—Aristotle

Ask anyone if they’d like to be more organised, and almost everyone will answer, “Yes!” The benefits of being organised are many. You can manage your time more efficiently, so that you’ll have more of it to do the things you love. And stress levels are reduced since you won’t be racing around your home anxiously looking for misplaced or lost items.

These benefits and others create a path towards true liberation. Not one necessarily free from all material objects, although you could certainly pursue that goal. But freedom and happiness don’t require you to give up all your worldly possessions—merely to hold them more loosely.

If you are willing to relax your grip on the objects that surround you and learn to recognise the stories you tell yourself about these objects and their significance in your life, the stuff of your life will find its proper places and everything around you will open up—literally and figuratively. Even his Holiness the Dalai Lama said, “If you want to practice meditation, first clean up your room.”

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A version of this was first published in the December 2013 issue of Complete Wellbeing.

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