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In this guest blog series, professional organizer Sarah Grierson-Dale offers a fresh perspective on the subject of home organization and how we relate to our possessions. Through studying the patterns we perform in our daily lives, Sarah offers advice and tools for change as well as anecdotes of transformation she herself has experienced as well as witnessed in her work with clients. Learn more about Sarah at ebbandfloworganizing.com and send any questions to sarahgdale@gmail.com.


Ebb, Flow and the Freedom of Change

In January of 2019, I officially started my organizing business. For months and months, I played with ideas of what to call it, some joking, some serious. I wanted the name to represent the idea of how things naturally come and go in life, and I wanted it to be inspired by nature, somehow harping on the positive aspects of this change. After much thought, I came up with the name “Ebb and Flow Organizing.”

In previous articles, I have discussed this ebb and flow concept in different ways, but for me it is always predicated upon the idea that by letting go of something — be it an object, belief, circumstance, or person — you allow to come in what is waiting for you but has been blocked by past attachments.

However much resistance one encounters in the ebb, the flow brings a freedom that is ultimately more valuable than the thing that no longer “holds space” in your life. It’s a practice of being honest with one’s self and leveling up to the questions: what is happening now, and what do I want for my future?

This week, I want to discuss this concept by looking closer at our relationships to the concept of Space.

empty space by a window in a room

Relating to Space

In the spirit of experimentation, I invite you to play with the following questions: What is your relationship with space? How do you relate to empty space versus full space? What is hidden (ie. storage space) versus out in the open?

What about the space between objects? Do you let you objects breathe in a room, or is everything piled and crammed together? Do all spaces have to be filled? Is there room to rest?

These are creative and conceptual questions as much as a literal ones, but I see them both symbiotically. By this I mean that whatever is in your physical space affects your psyche as well. A person’s outer space is a reflection of their inner space, emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual.

To try and synthesize it down, one’s space is a culmination of all of their circumstances leading up to now. That may be obvious, but without stopping to take stock, the things pile up as the years go by and we get lost in a fog of attachments.

My personal and ongoing goal is to keep up with this, not in a shameful way, but in a way to feel inspired and proactive as the years go on.

Answers From Questions

In asking myself these questions, I have understood myself better and how to reframe my behavior and change to better habits. The most profound change has been to reframe cleaning and organizing into weekly and yearly cyclical rituals that coincide with nature as much as possible.

In my next article I will expand on this, and share how the practical ways cleaning or organizing can be enjoyable habits rather than a burden of monotony.

But for now, noodle on the questions above, and we will get into the meat next time with “Ritual Pleasures or Routine Pressures, the Choice is Up to You.”

Take care,

Sarah Grierson-Dale | ebbandfloworganizing.com

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