Thursday, April 19, 2007

Feng Shui the Wardrobe

Adapted from Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui, by Karen Kingston.

Most people wear about 20 percent of their wardrobe 80 percent of the time. If you doubt me, do this test for a month: each time you wear something and launder it, hang it at one end of your wardrobe. At the end of the month you will find (unless you have deliberately changed your habits to beat this exercise or have a job that requires you to vary your outfits often) you are wearing these same clothes most of the time.

Actually it's not just the clothes you wear that follow this 20/80 pattern. It can be applied to everything else you own and to most activities in life. We all get 80 percent of our results from 20 percent of our efforts (this is known in the business world as the Pareto Principle, named after an Italian economist who first figured it out). Similarly, we get 80 percent use from 20 percent of our belongings.

So when it comes to clearing out your wardrobe, first separate your clothes honestly into the 20 percent you love to wear and the 80 percent that are just taking up space, and it becomes much easier to dump the excess.

When sorting through your 80 percent pile, it is wise to get clear on your criteria for whether something stays or goes. First check out the colors. A great investment is to have a professional color consultation to discover which colors uplift and enhance your energy, and which colors do the opposite. You will walk away with a swatch of color samples that are sure to make you look and feel great, and this does wonders for your self-assurance.

This helps you to sift through at least 50 percent of your clothes and discard them forever, because it suddenly becomes abundantly obvious to you that they never did anything for you in the first place.

Next, try on each item in the remaining pile and see how you feel. If you don't like the shape, the texture, the cut, the material, or anything else about it, let it go. You owe it to yourself to create a collection of outfits you absolutely love, so that never again do you open a wardrobe bulging with clothes and moan, "But I've got nothing to wear!"

Make a decision to never, ever buy anything again that isn't quite what you want, because now you know it will just end up in the 80 percent pile and you will have wasted your money. Resolve to buy only clothes that you love and that look great on you, and if this means that you buy three gorgeous outfits that cost a bit more rather than twenty cheaper ones, so be it.

And, yes, I recommend you do this even if you are short of money. In fact, making a point of always looking good and feeling good is one of the best ways you can raise your energy and so attract better prosperity to yourself.

Clothes and Energy Vibrations
Some people keep things they haven't worn in over twenty years. They say that if they hang on to them long enough they will come back into fashion. My advice is: if you haven't worn it in the last year, and especially if you haven't worn it in the last two or three years, then let it go.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Things Are Not Always Black or White

When i was in elementary school, I got into a major argument with a boy in my class.... I have forgotten what the argument was about, but I have never forgotten the lesson I learned that day.

I was convinced that "I" was right and "he" was wrong ... and he was just as convinced that "I" was wrong and "he" was right. The teacher decided to teach us a very important lesson. She brought us up to the front of the class and placed him on one side of her desk and me on the other. In the middle of her desk was a large, round object. I could clearly see that it was black. She asked the boy what color the object was. "White," he answered....I couldn't believe he said the object was white, when it was obviously black!

Another argument started between my classmate and me, this time about the color of the object. The teacher told me to go stand where the boy was standing and told him to come stand where I had been. We changed places, and now she asked me what the color of the object was. I had to answer, "White." It was an object with two differently colored sides, and from his viewpoint it was white. Only from my side was it black.

My teacher taught me a very important lesson that day: You must stand in the other person's shoes and look at the situation through their eyes in order to truly understand their perspective...because once you have closed your mind to thinking that only you are right, you have actually rejected the whole truth...

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Life philosophy - filling of an empty jar

When things in your life seem almost too much to handle, when 24 hours in a day are not enough, remember the story of an empty jar and the 2 cups of coffee.

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, wordlessly, he picked up a very large empty jar and proceeded to fill it with rocks until the top of the jar.

He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was! So the professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles, of course, rolled into the open areas between the rocks. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with a unanimous "yes."

The professor then produced two cups of coffee from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar, effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed.

"Now," said the professor, as the laughter subsided, " I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life. The rocks are the important things - your health, your family, your partner, your children, your friends, your favorite passions - things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full.

The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house, and your car. The sand is everything else - the small stuff.

If you put the sand into the jar first, there is no room for the pebbles or the rocks. The same goes for life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you.

Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Play with your children. Take time to get medical checkups. Take your partner out to dinner. Play another 18. There will always be time to go to work, clean the house, give a dinner party and fix the disposal"

Take care of the rocks first, the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand."

One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the coffee represented.

The professor smiled. "I'm glad you asked. It just goes to show you that no matter how full your life may seem, there's always room for a couple of cups of coffee with a friend."