Get rid of it.
Let it go.
Empty the space.
About two months ago I started a new habit. Every day I throw something away.
Some days it’s major; I empty a closet or something, but most days it’s a little thing that I no longer need. (I threw a ballpoint pen away today).
I don’t think it matters the size of what you get rid of. I do think it matters that your life becomes less and less cluttered.
I used to own a pink golf shirt. I liked the color and the vacation I bought it on.
I hated that it no longer fit.
Almost every day for five years I’d glance at it; decide not to wear it. Every day I’d consider that shirt and choose another … FOR FIVE YEARS!
That’s over 1,800 thoughts about at item I never wear. Time to get rid of it.
Most people ignore thinking. They view money, cars, houses and possessions as valuable resources, but consider thinking as nothing.
These people are wrong.
Thinking is your MOST valuable resource. It’s more valuable than gold.
Thinking is a limited resource. You can only spend so much mental energy in a day.
Every decision you make steals a fraction of today's mental energy. If your day is filled with unimportant decisions you will have very little mind power left for things that matter.
Clutter bogs down the dojo.
Years ago I used to vary the warm up in our dojo class.
Some days we’d do jumping jacks, some days knee bends, other days all sorts of different stretches. I would change the warm up also based on the people who attended. By the time the teaching actually started I had made dozens of decisions. I discovered that by the end of class I was mentally exhausted. I had nothing left for the things that really mattered.
I would try and deliver a closing talk and forget what I was going to say. Seriously.
Today we do the exact same boring warm up every class. We’ve done it so many times that everyone knows it and it can be done by anyone. I can even step off the mats and ask a front row student to continue with it - and they do.
Clutter affects your technique.
A pure technique is a clean technique. When you throw out all the unnecessary movement in a strike you have perfected the skill. Perfection is not what you can do (anyone can learn to throw a punch). Perfection is about getting rid of all the extra movements that slow you down.
Clutter bogs down martial arts styles.
In ancient times a Master would leave some of his favorite techniques to the student in the form of a Kata or Waza. (prearranged memorized routine). When the Master would pass the students would then teach that form as part of their style.
But one day that student becomes a Master. They pass on their own form to their students and so on and so on. Given enough time a particular system of Martial Arts is so convoluted and so filled with forms that no one has time to work on excellence.
I say throw it all out. Do what makes sense, do what makes you outstanding - nothing else.
Every success wore some type of uniform.
Steve Jobs didn’t just like those turtlenecks. He wore them because he was saving his mind for what mattered.
Warren Buffett doesn’t wear the same tie because it matches his eyes. He conserves his mind.
In the dojo; we wear the same uniform because all of our attention is on our art - not our clothing.
Get rid of something daily
Start small. If you can’t find a pink shirt to get rid of maybe you could start with something even smaller; like a thought. Maybe you’ve been holding onto a resentment or a grudge. Maybe when you let it go there will be room for something else?
Get rid of it. Throw it out. Let it go.
It feels good.