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Clearing Space for a New Creation

July '10

Every once in a while, the urge to clear comes calling with a ferocious force. I always welcome its periodic arrival, because I know I will accomplish a lot in a short time, and something new will be entering my life. Sure enough, after a recent visit of this clean-up impulse, I found myself adding a new branch to my life coaching work. Starting in September, on Wednesday evenings, I’ll be teaching a 10-week course, Reinvent Your Life ~ Write Now, based on the book I wrote called, The Midlife Woman’s Journal. I’m offering this seminar here in Rhode Island in two parts, which can be taken separately (5 weeks each).

For more information and registration material, you can click here. If you hope to join us, be sure to register early. Enrollment is limited and folks will be accepted in the order their registration is received. Happily, Bagelz of Wickford (with its fine bagels and tasty organic coffee) is providing after-hours space for us from 6:30-8:30 pm.

So what new ventures are showing up in your life? Or, perhaps you’re in the position of wishing for something new: a different daily routine, a fresh perspective, or an actual adventure. If so, I suggest you start trimming an arena of your life (financial, household, library, wardrobe, photographs, etc.). At the very least you will be in better shape – and you may be surprised at what appears on your doorstep.

Recently, I learned about an interesting method for clearing out that worked well for the clothes in my closet. Like most approaches for organizing, you start by taking all the items out of the space. Then instead of focusing on what you to eliminate (those clothes you haven’t worn in a year or two) you start looking for what you love, adore and want to keep – what you would buy today. Then you place these currently appealing clothes back in your closet.

Next you create your give-away pile of clothes (what you don’t want) and bundle them up for your favorite charity, or second-hand store. If you’re like me, you’ll probably be left with a “maybe” pile. Do not return these clothes to your closet! Pack them away where you can reach them if you want them. (I put mine in the guest room closet.) If you actually wear one of these “maybe” items, then, and only then, return it to your closet.

I suggest that if you’re yearning for something new in your life, start clearing! You can undoubtedly count on the law of physics that “nature abhors a vacuum!”  And I’d love to hear your story of what happens next.

Happy July,


  1. Andrea Gutierrez said on July 31, 2010:

    I would suggest hiring a professional organizer to get you started on the path to clearing a space for whatever new is awaiting you !
    Having worked as a professional organizer/de-clutterer for twenty plus years, I know first hand how transformative the work of clearing is! Taking the first step can be overwhelming and that is where our experience comes into play – we will take you step by step through the process !

  2. Roberta Taylor said on July 31, 2010:

    What a great idea for getting rid of the “maybes” in life and making space for new ideas. Thank you.

  3. Bonnie said on July 31, 2010:

    You’re right, Roberta! The process works with ideas as well as things.


  4. Margaret Ann said on July 31, 2010:

    I’ve had a terrible upper respiratory infection for about 2 weeks and have done the full course of antibiotics, etc. Today I felt very sluggish all day, however towards evening I suddenly had a burst of energy and decided to clean out some dresser drawers and got a pile of clothes together to donate to charity. Luckily the charity’s bin is right downstairs in the basement of my condo so I didn’t give myself time to waver, just took the clothes right down and dumped them into the bn. So, it was quite a surprise to get your newletter and read about your topic. I hope this means I’m opening my life up to something new and positive! Yay!

  5. Bonnie said on August 3, 2010:

    Hi Andrea!

    Great idea for jump starting a midlife reinvention! Do you have a website where folks can become acquainted with your work?


  6. Bonnie said on August 3, 2010:

    Hi Margaret Ann!

    Loved the way you responded when the spirit moved you! Let us know if anything new shows up, or you get some inklings of some different desires for yoru life.


  7. Kay said on August 27, 2010:

    Hi Bonnie,

    Thank you for your article. I decided this summer to live with a very limited wardrobe indeed. It was inspired by a weeks holiday I took with only hand luggage.

    I have spent the whole summer with 20 mix and match items in my wardrobe. I have actually loved the freedom it has given me. No choice, no decisions, no searching, no time wasting.

    Guess what I shall be doing with my winter wardrobe!

  8. Bonnie said on August 27, 2010:

    Hi Kay!

    What a great idea! I know what you mean by traveling light. When I embarked on my midlife-crisis, solo journey around the world, I was living out of two suitcases for six months. Before I left, my aunt advised me to pack an item of clothing, only if it went with at least two other items. It really helped! Now with your inspiration, I plan to try the “20 mix-and-match items” rule for my summer wardrobe before I put it away. I like it!


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