I’ve been thinking a lot about the emotion shame and how often it shows up in my work. In fact, when I tell people what I do for a living, they immediately confess how guilty or embarrassed they feel about their own homes. They don’t host play dates or dinner parties or even have friends over because they feel shame about their homes and how they think they should look. The clients who hire me are generally very successful, high functioning professionals who feel completely mortified that their homes are cluttered and unorganized.
Shame, like all emotions, is caused directly by our thinking. Thoughts such as, “I should be able to do this better” or “I can’t believe I let things get so out of control” lead to feeling shame. And generally, when we feel shame we get paralyzed and overwhelmed. Not helpful at all when trying to transform a home! The good news is you can choose to redirect your brain towards more constructive thinking which will trigger different emotions.
If you are experiencing any degree of shame when you think about your home, ask yourself this: Wouldn’t it be more useful to feel curious, inspired or motivated? When I see a home filled with clutter I get excited because I see the potential of a beautiful, functional, clutter-free space. Pick the emotions that feel best to you and start practicing new thoughts that support them. Ask yourself some of these powerful questions to start:
What would your dream home look and feel like? What colors and styles are you drawn to?
Who would you be without your clutter? What could you accomplish?
What do you want to create space for? A relaxing sanctuary? A place to entertain? A space to enjoy a favorite hobby?
Remind yourself that problems are just opportunities for success. Look at your home as a space filled with endless potential and decide today what you want to create.