My ideal self and my real self aren’t exactly the same person. My ideal self is like this:
I’m driving a Jeep somewhere on the west coast, heading up a trail so I can go running or hiking or do a little rock climbing. My husband and son are with me, and all we see are blue skies. It’s a Tuesday morning and we are stress free and ready for fun.
My real self is more like this:
Well, except that isn’t actually me or my son. The point is that my real Tuesday morning is spent writing at a desk, trying to wrangle a toddler, while also attempting to chug a cup of coffee.
I believe it’s important to live as close to our ideal self as possible. I love my job, but I work because I need to. Working provides me with the means to live as close to my ideal as I can and to be responsible for the things I value.
Even though I’m not spending this Tuesday morning driving up a mountain with my family, I have plans to do exactly that on an upcoming vacation. Like I said, my ideal self is as close as possible to my real self.
Problems arise, however, when someone’s ideal self and real self are separated by a giant chasm. The ideal self is never experienced, and guilt, stress, and clutter accumulate because of this disconnect. Someone might see her ideal self as a golfer who plays the most beautiful courses in the world, and she may even have a set of golf clubs in the basement waiting for her to use. But, if she hasn’t picked up a club in a decade and hasn’t scheduled a tee time or saved any money or researched possible golf trips or done anything to make her vision a reality, there is too much distance between the ideal and the real. The golfing dream is just a dream, and it’s time to make it happen or let it go.
Clutter comes in many forms — physical, mental, emotional, etc. — and all of it is unproductive and distracting. Take a few moments to review your ideal self. Decide if the vision of who you want to be is really who you want to be. If it is, do everything in your power to clear the clutter and get as close to that ideal as possible. If it isn’t, let go of those misperceptions and their associated clutter. Make room for an ideal self you actually desire and have the motivation to pursue.
Life is too short to fill it with clutter. Live as close to your ideal self as possible.