Wednesday, November 11

The Great Mind Decluttering Experiment.... phase 2

Following on from phase 1.... Here's how I decluttered three specific interests - blogsurfing, parenting, and reading.

Blogsurfing was decluttered by firstly unFollowing all the blogs I didn't connect with, had initially supported as a small blog, no longer resonated with, etc, etc. And secondly by merging blogsurfing with blog commenting. That is, I read mostly the blogs I'll likely comment on. I want to connect with people first, information second.

Parenting blogs (not personal mama ones) I eliminated. Weird huh? See, I read several blogs/sites concerning parenting issues and my mind was holding onto the desire to blog about tons of various parenting issues. When I created Holistic Mama, it was on a paid domain and it was a website rather than a blog. Finally I wanted something more intimate and more journal-like, so I came to Blogger.

But somewhere in my mind I was still holding onto the ideal of writing about all the top parenting issues. It's just too much. Fortunately, I had already let go the ideal of blogging about eco issues and organic this and that, and, and.....

And you know what? It's no longer who I am. Others do an amazing job of covering the big issues. Fact is, I gain the most pleasure from blogging about what is on the forefront of my mind at the time. And almost always, this means issues that are relevant to me right now. I've discovered that this authenticity connects me most with other mothers. Readers resonate with that. If one day I want to blog about vaccinations, great, if another day I want to blog about a cake recipe, great too. If I want to include tons of information, great. If I just want to share a snippet or thought, great too.

It's okay, I tell myself, I don't have to write about every issue.

More similar mind clutter....... I counted 87 posts in draft form. Yikes. 115 feed reader subscriptions. Several months back I had over 250 subs.

and now..... down to 77 subs, and.... still sifting those drafts.

It's liberating to allow yourself to not have to follow every bit of information...... ;)


This is a small portion of my bookcase, and my Pile Nearby...

Now you might think, well, that's where you put books, in bookcases. Thing is, as we're living in an apartment while we wait to build our new house, a lot of our stuff is still boxed up, including most of my books. What these books, the ones on the shelves, represent, is subjects I want to read in the near future.

These want-to-read-soon subjects include - philosophy, numerology, several parenting topics, psyche, astrology, children and nature, literacy, Taosim, as well as some fiction titles I Want to Get To.

Until last week, I hadn't realised what a mental burden they were, sitting there, in my face as it were.


I've removed the books I'll likely not read, especially non-fiction. And my pile nearby, contains just two books. What a glorious declutter that was for me.

I went outside, soaked in some sun and said to myself - you don't have to read everything Mon, you don't have to know everything. I shed a couple of tears for myself - what a relief.

I know those who don't have a FOMO ('fraid of missing out) complex or aren't Profoundly Interested, won't 'get' this. But for people like me, it's a difficult road to navigate. You crave knowledge, you revel in 'new info', you adore Life..... but it's only one lifetime as this Me. Fact.

Saturn in my creative House has been saying to me - you want/need to be creative... make the difficult choices that will allow that creativity to blossom, to shine, to breathe. Yes, there are limitations (pesonal time/space) but adding more interests ain't gonna make it easier woman!

And it's a daily vigilance too. A friend mentioned 9-star ki and an hour and several websites later.... argh... let it go! Interesting but not a soul need. I can chat about many things, I don't need to research everything for the sake of Peter.

And would you know it, less than a week later.... I came up with a real, solid, exciting, book idea.

I'm learning - decluttering and letting go of interests, is not a punishment, it's a gift. It's not a restriction! It's space.

Every time I thought, heck, wailed, - I have no time, no space... I was lying to myself.


  1. Ahh Mon! THANKS for this... "It's liberating to allow yourself to not have to follow every bit of information...... ;)". Good reminder. I am totally with you on the blogging about top of mind stuff. I've recently got a load of grief for the random things I blog about but I say 'Stuff it!'.
    Books - ahhh. Very ironic that all the books I'm trying to follow in my current FOMO complex came from you!!! We currently have about 10 books of yours 'on the go' but I'm really chilling out about it. No pressure to learn, absorb, use everything now. Strange that as you are mentally de-cluttering we are physically cluttering, leaving loads of books lying around to keep dipping into... Steve has absorbed himself in the written word for the first time in ages (Ecohouse book has him hooked!) It's a delight!
    Good on yer for creating the space you needed - see that's you being creative, right there!
    Best of luck with nurturing that book idea - I'm excited for you. X
    PS: Blog looks 'decluttered' too!!!

  2. I knew Steve would like that one. I think with non-fiction, and when you're really into a subject, the excitement easily snowballs into something that is now stressful. 1-3 books has got be the max for our poor brains. I mean, what do we really absorb with 10 books on the go?

    I love your random things blogging.... but overall it comes across as very focused, to me. :)

  3. The books made me flinch. I'm a book hoarder, I have to own and read every book I can find. I've got boxes and boxes of books to-read, might-read-again, can't-read-enough. Yesterday I decided it was time to release my obsession and posted a bunch on PaperBackSwap. Oh my goodness what a relief!

  4. I am right there with you with the FOMO complex, it seems I have an uncontrollable need for knowledge and there is never enough. I also prefer to blog about whatever moves me at that moment, I also enjoy reading blogs that are of that same feel.

    Right there with you sister!

  5. timely for me. I have been a bad blogger,blog reader of late...there was no time for all of them, so I did none. I missed you.
    I'm going to declutter. The books...I have all of mine, and almost all of my Grandparent's books from the great emptying of the house
    this summer. I have been donating many of them lately. But I have kept all the art and history books that my Grandfather used for research in his painting.They mean too much.

  6. Hi, I know what you mean about the books, all mine have gone to the charity shop, except for my bible, Your Money or Your Life by Joe Dominguez and Vicki Robin, and a couple of books on trucking, I used to be a trucker. I now get my books from the library. I have eight for four weeks, skim through them and give them back. Ilona

  7. I really cannot related to your FOMO complex and am truly getting a kick out of it! Actually what I'm getting the kick out of is your decluttering experiment and the success of it so far. But you wanna know what the biggest kick is? YOUR BOOK IDEA!!!!!!! How exciting is this?! Underneath your piles of books, blogs and brains...there it was...YOUR book, just waiting to be unearthed..yay!

  8. Books. Ah, books. I threw out three large boxes of them when we moved. I have even more boxes stored in the garage. Only my treasures, my friends rather than my books, remain in the living areas. I don't need to read them, just look at them to connect again with their souls.

    I like what you wrote about blog decluttering. I have a lot of guilt about reading-without-commenting, but have begun decluttering my life by letting that guilt go. I've also come to some conclusions about blog friendships which help in the decluttering process too.

  9. Have been going through a de-cluttering in another sense (having babies are FANTASTIC for moving one on aren't they?) De-cluttering my commitments in the public world, it really brings up 'letting go' issues, and power and knowledge power even and what my perception of that is and means to me. Selflessness as a theme comes out of it.
    And most importantly it's all toward coming back to the centre for myself, what is most important for me and my family. Such a great process.
    Can resonate your thoughts re the parenting blogs, akin to my belief of not reading books on 'how to' parent... or something. Have also naturally stopped reading unschooling things. Mind you I love reading creative ideas from others and can appreciate the diversity in all blog genres.

  10. YES! I'm totally with you on the blog reading and writing. Although, I hate to let go of a friendship, so even though I could possibly find other blogs that I resonate even more with, I just don't go looking for them. Maybe in the future when I feel the need, but for now I am enjoying my little circle. I do have a huge list of subscriptions "in case I get bored." I rarely go there but at least I don't feel pressured to.

    And I have about 70 posts in draft. Yikes. But that's okay for me because sometimes I just need to write something out, even if I never publish it. Still, they are a sort of clutter and I out to do something about that.

    I have too many books and have only unpacked about a fifth of them--enough to fill about five shelves. None of them are required reading.

    I have so many craft hobbies, but I know I can't do them all. Some may be set aside for years before I feel like picking it up again. A time and a season, right? Right now I'm organizing my creative space, so hopefully that inspires me (at least I won't feel so cluttered). I decided to make a list of all the things I really want to do for the month, and I will try to do that on a monthly basis--no pressure to get it all done, just want a clear picture of what I want.

    And congrats on the book idea! I'm still trying to figure out what the heck I really want to write about.

  11. I really loved this post! It spoke to me and reminded me...well...of ME!!! I really need to de-clutter my space as well, including my books, and blogsurfing~

    Also...I have chosen you as one of my recipients of the Best Blog Award. Please check out my blog for details and a link for the picture that goes along with the award.

  12. Hi Mon: I've been decluttering on a physical level, so I enjoyed reading about your mental decluttering process. Come to think of it, my physical decluttering leads to a mental decluttering for me.

    I was pleasantly surprised to see that you've added my site as one of your amigos. I value your blog, so that means a lot.


  13. i'm always adding and deleting from my reader list, trying to find the perfect blogs that inspire or challenge me or inform me without overdoing my time commitment. i had to let go of the ones that don't even allow comments from non-blogspot users.

    it's hard. i want to read and follow and connect but there just isn't time. and right now my commitment to my family and our time together comes first.

    it's just such a big, bright, beautiful world and i'm like the kid at christmas, not wanting to take a bathroom break, lest i miss something!! :D


  14. I needed to read this post today!! I feel overwhelmed by blogging and my huge to-do list. Sometimes I get lost in all that I think I have to do. I just want to "be". Thanks Mon!

  15. I loved this post b/c it made me feel like someone else knew what my head was like. I tend to get over zealous and have a million books, subscribe to a million blogs and then feel completely overwhelmed and then I declutter b/c I read some inspirational how-to decluttering post and then I regret free saling a portion of my library. lol.

    But seriously, I feel you on the parenting blogs. I read a few and I initially thought I would cover the topics like you said and I just can't imagine in it. The last thing I feel comfortable doing is listing parenting advice. Also, I really enjoy other mothers keeping me up on the current events and details of what chemicals are in what products, but I don't know...I try, but my heart isn't in it.

    I think the only thing I can write about is how I feel and how I relate to what is happening around me. I figure that's just got to be how it works for me.

  16. I am working hard on this right now. Cutting out the stuff that's no longer resonating with me. I like the idea of building a tribe and finding my 'right people', and so I'm really forcing myself to examine what I'm doing and why.

    You're right, once I let go of the need to be on top of everything, I feel liberated. And then I'm also free to pursue the more important (to me) things.

  17. I'm so with you, Mon! I've been ruthlessly cleaning out my boxes, closets, etc. This includes my favorite blogs (had to stop visiting some so frequently!), and deleting and organizing my insanely messy computer files! I'm still in the middle of things, but I am feeling great. I want to make more time for the creative things I want to do!

  18. *sigh*

    hearin' it, feelin' it...

    I'm FOMO-afflicted, as you well know ;)...

    Funny to read this right now...seeing as how I'm pondering some major bloggy changes...not even sure what they might be but...

    Is it weird that I feel weird about un-following people's blogs....that it almost feels rude? Dunno...guess the ones with a large readership wouldn't even notice....



  19. Thank you for saying that I do an amazing job of covering the big issues. Much appreciated! :)


No comment is too long or short around here.

Comment moderation on posts older than 7 days.