Spring cleaning is great, but fall decluttering is truly valuable. Fall matters, and here’s why.
A long time ago–no idea where or when really–I read something that compared autumn to the “letting go” process that we need to go through in order to grow. I grabbed on to that idea, and I’ve thought about it often over the years.
The tree naturally drops the leaves that once served it well. Those leaves sprouted from buds last spring, and since their beginning, they have been a source of nourishment for the whole tree. They spread their green selves toward the sun and got to work creating chlorophyll to feed the tree. It’s an amazing system. But as cold weather approaches, the leaves end their food-making role. They stop creating chlorophyll, stop nourishing the tree. The tree drops them to the ground, leaving empty space where each leaf had been. The braches are bare, ready for the new buds that spring will bring. If the tree held on to all the old leaves, there would not be room for new leaves–the tree’s only source of food. There would not be room for growth.
Okay…the analogy isn’t too hard. I’m sure you are getting the picture. We have to drop stuff if we want to have room for the things that really matter. Want to grow in knowledge? Drop the “noise” that clutters up your mind and wastes your time. Want to grow in your faith? Drop the voices that aren’t feeding your soul. Want to grow in the way you organize or manage your time? (Imagine me raising my hand enthusiastically and shouting “Me, me!”) DROP THE CLUTTER.
But here is the best part. Trees do not mourn the loss of their leaves. They aren’t out there in our backyards thinking, “I can’t lose these leaves. I worked so hard to create them last spring. I can’t get rid of that one. It’s such a beautiful shade of red. Oh no! Not that one! It’s the biggest leaf I’ve ever seen. No, I’m keeping that one. I don’t want to waste it!” That doesn’t happen. The leaves simply do not serve the tree any longer. They must go. Why do we analyze each item and place value on it that is far higher than its practical worth?
I have a closet full of things that served me once-upon-a-time. They don’t serve me any longer, so I’m passing them to someone who will enjoy them, value them, and be blessed by them.
This is why fall matters to me. It is an opportunity to drop the old and settle in for a beautiful season, free from the STUFF that holds me back. I have many wonderful memories of fall, and the emotions of those happy times come flooding back and motivate me to make new autumn memories with my husband and children. I can’t do those things freely if I’m held back by old thoughts, old regrets, and physical clutter.
What will you drop this fall?