Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Congruency...say what?

So what does a picture of plant tags and Virginia Woolf books have to do with congruency? Good question! Quite simply, I am currently on a bit of a mission to make things in my life more congruent. Yup, say what?

This all started about a month ago. I read somewhere about the concept of how in order to really, radically move forward in life and to shift blocked energy one must seek congruency - i.e. one must let go of things, mindsets, habits etc. that are not congruent with who we currently are and who we wish to be. Well I wasn't feeling particularly blocked but I was intrigued at the thought of examining my life to see if I could locate areas where I wasn't congruent.

First up, I realized my studio was in need of a good sort out. If you have been reading previous posts, you will recall that I have spent some time in recent months 'exploring'. It was time to tidy up some of the mess created whilst exploring! Seriously, you don't need an article on congruency, you simply need to brew up a pot of tea, load up a tray with milk and mug and such and then find that once you have climbed the stairs to the studio that you do not have a clear surface anywhere to set down the tray! I started to tidy things up immediately. While I wouldn't say that I was feeling blocked, once my studio was cleaned up I did experience a burst of enthusiasm and energy, along with a desire to roll up my sleeves and really dig in to some fresh art and some business things that I had let slide...

Next up, I spied some shelves in our family room that needed a bit of sorting. On one of those shelves, I discovered a gardening file that I had forgotten about. In the file I found meticulous notes and plans for my landscaping projects along with plant tags from shrubs and perennials that I had purchased. But was this file congruent with my current life? Quite simply no. All of these plants were happily growing at a home we no longer owned! :-) Purging this from my life was a no-brainer!

Then I got congruent about our bookcases. I knew I had books that I no longer wanted to keep but every time I thought of tackling this sorting job, I felt overwhelmed. Ah but this article on congruency was starting to burn a fire in me...those books 'artfully' displayed on the floor of our living room needed to go on the shelves, 'on the floor' was not congruent with who I wanted to be. 

In recent years our farming endeavours has led to the purchase of many how to books - how to raise chickens, care for goats, keep bees and so on. This was congruent with my new life but many books in our home were not. So I dove into the project. I am happy to say that my energy is no longer at risk of being blocked by Virginia Woolf's Orlando! What on earth was I hanging onto the Collected Novels by Virginia Woolf for? No offence to fans of her work but gosh this is one writer I never did get. Two large bags of books were donated to our local library for their used book fundraising project and the farming books have a new home...

This getting congruent feels wonderful! And yes the whole deal is about a lot more than sorting and getting rid of material goods. I am also examining how I think about things and looking at what I have been focusing on, what I have been spending my time on...all of that good stuff! I highly recommend it...sometimes I think we need to question if drifting along with the status quo is really working for us.


Ann said...

When you finish up there you are welcome to come over to my house! Seriously, I have been working towards living more minimally for quite some time. Some things are hard to let go of though, especially as artists you just never know when that one item is the very thing needed the next time inspiration hits. Yet there are other things that just seem to hang around no longer serving any purpose. These days,I am in a constant state of purging those things. And trying to be much more mindful of what I am willing to bring into my house in the first place :-)

Laura Pond said...

I just disposed of 1200 books (out of 2300) but miss them terribly.

Teresa Mallen said...

Ann, I agree that being mindful of what comes in from now on is key. And it can be hard to let go. I do it in stages if necessary. For example I have had several items of clothing sitting on a chair in a spare room - for a few weeks now. I have been mustering the courage to make our final separation. I am happy to report that I am now ready to put them in bags so I can donate the clothes to a shelter.

Laura, I am very sorry that you miss your books. I must say that I have let go of a few items over the years that I wish I could have back. But wow, you let go of a lot of books so no wonder you are feeling bereft. I am sure your original intention was 'right' and I hope that in time you can adjust to their absence. I just visited my local library and saw one of my donated books on display (for purchase as part of their fundraising). For a crazy half second I actually had the thought of buying the darn thing!