Encouraging more whitespace in our physical and digital world, could provide the mental room to think clearly, process effectively and respond to life's challenges with a healthier mind.
But the whitespace in our lives is being crowded out by our things, including the cyber clutter that overwhelms us. I have been observing this in my life and now try to pursue less, consume less, reduce more and reuse more. To consider carefully, even prayerfully, the things I add to my life, both physical and digital.
My Hubster and I have been discussing minimalism and how a more uncluttered environment would help us live a more effective life. Less time organising, cleaning and sorting; more time being, living, relating and connecting. This got me thinking about how just printing documents for work is filling up my workspace, creating more clutter to manage and reducing my potential productivity.
This makes my physical space feel noisy.
Scientifically, everything resonates at a subcellular level but in this context, I believe clutter creates a feeling of unrest, anxiety and frustration. My default is to try to ignore it until it gets so bad I just deal with it all. But this takes time, energy and resources that I don’t always have.
From this, I have determined that unmanaged clutter creates psychological noise, eating up the whitespace that helps us think clearly, connect with a peaceful mindset and live a mindful life.
The more cluttered my physical environment is, the more cluttered I feel. And the more cluttered my mind (and in turn, my emotions), the more anxious and depressed I seem to become.
My sister-in-law and her Hubster run their own company from home. They have a simple and refined lifestyle, practicing minimalism and being mindful of their environment.
Through observing them, I’ve discovered that minimalism has an incredible and tangible impact that goes beyond making the physical world feel peaceful. Mel’s world makes me feel quiet. Her physical environment provides whitespace and, in turn, seems to have a positive psychological influence on my mind. From a business perspective, this can only have significant and positive outcomes but even in our personal life, this intentional pursuit to reduce the psychological, as well as physical noise (clutter) in our lives is going to create more room for God to speak to us and for us to grow and expand who we are as Christian women in our communities.
My conclusion is simple. We need not only a quiet time each day, but a quiet space: one that reflects a life that is free from worry and disorganisation. This isn’t about a home or workplace free from sound, just to be clear! It’s about making room for listening - to the Holy Spirit, to our emotions and to our bodies, ensuring that we can adjust when necessary and provide the best foundation for both our life and the people we do life with.
If we do not have psychological whitespace we are putting our minds, and subsequently, our bodies and mental health, under duress. I encourage you to take a moment with God and reflect on the areas of your life that might need a bit of decluttering. It’s not the easiest job I’ve tried, but it’s bearing fruit already and well worth the effort.