Recording: Spring Cleaning for Year-Round Happiness

Understand what it means to make edits to your life so you can prioritize what matters and live with joy.

It’s time to do some spring cleaning! But we aren’t talking about organizing your closet. In this Meetup Live recording, we’re discussing ways to clear the mental clutter so you can grow and thrive this season. Whether you’re making a major life change, or are trying to find more energy for the people and activities you love most, this practical demonstration will help you cut through the noise—and point you toward the life you truly want to live.

Watch this recording to learn from Elisabeth Sharp McKetta, author of Edit Your Life, and hear practical tips to clear your mind and focus on acting intentionally. Understand what it means to make edits to your life so you can prioritize what matters and live with joy.

Main Takeaways:

Life is noisier, messier, and more complicated than ever

  • The Paradox of Choice by psychologist Barry Schwartz gives a good answer to this. The more choices we have and feel that we must make, the less satisfied or confident we will be with our choice. The research is clear that choice overload does lead to negative emotions and stress, and might even contribute to depression and anxiety.

 Identify what isn’t serving you

  • Self-awareness doesn’t always happen in a linear way. The time to edit is anytime we feel out of sorts with our life. I often will feel out of sorts for a long time before I actually realize what needs to be edited. Sometimes it is a matter of tracking a feeling and at first being annoyed at the feeling, trying to avoid or ignore the feeling, and then ultimately accepting what the feeling is trying to tell you. Editing is a life practice that can be practiced in intervals, each spring is a great place to start. Ask some hard questions about your life, the simplest one is what in your life gives you energy?

Simple steps to cut through the overwhelming nature of modern life

  • There are three main questions to ask yourself when editing your life.
  1. What is it? Without any judgment, practice neutral observation. Ask yourself how much sleep are you getting, how much of your time is in solitude versus with people, and how much of your work is deep work versus topical shallow. We’re not making judgments, we’re simply mapping our day. We can do this by journaling or drawing pictures of what our day looks like.
  2. What is it trying to be? The best way to assess what is our life trying to be is to ask ourselves the question “If I had limitless [confidence, time, and money] what would I do?” Think of what you genuinely want more of.
  3. What is working? Think of what works and what doesn’t. You’ll notice that what doesn’t work is the last question because it’s easy to tear in with complaints. It’s easy to say, nothing is working but life has things in it that are absolutely beautiful and alive, that you would be really sad to see go. So we start with what is beautiful, what is sacred, and what is necessary, and then sort of pair away. These are the first steps in examining our lives to figure out the right direction for editing.

Top Q&A Questions and Resources:

  • Do you have any advice on editing your dating life?
    • I was having a conversation with a friend who’s recently divorced and is dating right now. She has the most beautiful way of going into online dating. She never drinks on a first date because she says that in itself gives her a lot of information about the person she’s with. She also makes sure she does not leave a date without letting them know whether or not she wants the second date. That way there is no ambiguity.
  • How do we get past the fear of change in our lives?
    • Change is scary because there’s the fear that if you change one aspect of your life it will have an impact on everything else in your life. There are two things that are important to keep in mind. First, nearly everything is reversible. The second is to try to act with kindness in any choice we make so that we don’t burn bridges behind us.

Elisabeth’s Resources:

Last modified on April 18, 2023