What the Clutter in Your Kitchen is Trying to Tell You
I have just completed a major overhaul of my kitchen. I purged my pantry and eliminated everything that was expired. Yes, those expiration dates catch up with professional organizers too. I solidly evaluate who I am in this new space and release anything that doesn’t serve me.
The kitchen, for many, is the core of the home, representing love, family and nourishment. It is ruled by the heart chakra: the command center for love, joy and inner peace. The kitchen is where we connect with those we share space with. You might have your own bathroom and bedroom in your house, but the kitchen is a communal gathering place for everyone who lives in the home. We come here to nourish not just our bodies, but our selves and our spirits. You can even think of nourishment as a form of self-care--in the food we feed ourselves, but also in how we take pleasure in fully living our lives. No other room in the house opens up so many channels of self-care and love like the kitchen.
The food we cook in the kitchen goes beyond mere survival. Food is not only essential, but also a great pleasure. Food is made up of the very nutrients that feed and fuel our lives, and we celebrate and share this in the kitchen. Food cooked and shared in the kitchen transcends actual physical nourishment and moves into the world of spiritual nourishment and community. There is a life force present in the kitchen that exists in no other room in the house. The kitchen is the cornerstone of love, nourishment and community. It can be a beautiful haven for connection, but if there are blocks in this space, it can also express a great need for communication and healing.
Let’s explore the deeper meaning of kitchen clutter. I had a client, Tricia, whose kitchen clutter had become unbearable, even causing tension between her and her husband. Since kitchens have everything to do with nourishment, it was clear that Tricia’s soul was depleted. We discussed the kinds of clutter that was piled up in the kitchen. In addition to unpacked groceries, receipts, bottles of spices and other bric-a-brac, there were piles of books and college course brochures. I assumed that they were related to her boys’ upcoming college tours, but they were actually Tricia’s. She wanted to go back to school. The nourishment that Tricia craved was her purpose and career path. The kitchen had been Tricia’s domain for the last 20 years. But Tricia had outgrown her role. She had raised her kids to the point that they no longer needed her. Her sons were in high school, and in a few short years they would be off at college. Tricia on the other hand, was lacking in direction, goals and career plans of her own.
The kitchen’s clutter acted as an alarm clock for awakening Tricia’s power and voice. It gave her a safe space to express her needs, and when she was ready to look, it showed her exactly what she needed to do to thrive in her life and marriage. The following year Tricia launched into an education path to become a therapist. She now has a private practice, and empowers women every day through her work. The kitchen’s power center of love and nourishment lit the way for Tricia’s purpose to come to fruition. All she had to do was look just beyond the surface of the clutter.
Now back to my own ah-ha moment in the kitchen. I’ve cleared the space and cleansed my spirit. As I survey the kitchen, not only do I see that the clutter has been lifted all around me, I also feel a sense of clarity and boost of energy. I can have guests over, or even a fancy dinner party! The list of possibilities is endless.
I also realize that clutter often creeps up on us. My kitchen looks and feels fantastic now. At the same time, I acknowledge that stacks of bills, magazines, potatoes and dish towels may make an appearance where they are not wanted in the coming weeks. That’s when I simply refer back to my 3 easy organizing rules to live by.
We all have clutter to clean up in our lives, but I encourage you to look past the papers, bags, boxes and piles of clothes in front of you and tap into the emotion that lies beneath those stacks and piles. Clutter speaks. All you have to do now is listen.
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