self care

5 Ways to Clear Space for the Year Ahead

December 08, 2021
Victoria Bouthillier

More than any other month of the year, December has a tendency to test and push our limits. 

Work-life balance may be thrown into question as we scurry towards the finish line during this notoriously busy time. As we strive to purchase the most thoughtful gifts for those on our list, it’s not long before our homes — stacked with boxes and strewn with wrapping paper — begin to feel as though they’ve been overtaken by Santa’s workshop. 

Bursting with the trinkets and clothing we’ve amassed throughout the year — and soon to be bubbling with newly gifted items — the adrenaline-fueled abundance of the holiday season can leave us feeling, well, a little cramped. 

Amid the chaos of it all, it’s easy to lose sight of what an opportune time it is to clear space, both in your closet and in your mind, for all the wonderful things coming your way in 2022. 

Donate What You Don’t Need

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With consumerism at an all-time high during the holidays, cleaning out your drawers is the ultimate act of re-centring. Consider what you’ve actually worn this year and, by the same token, what you’re really going to use this year, and pass along the rest. Not only will you feel like the portrait of virtue knowing you’ve given your preloved items to people in need, but you’ll also signal to the universe you have space for more good things.

Not sure where to unload your goods? Look no further than your local homeless shelters, women’s shelters, or thrift stores. Organizations, like Free the Girls, The Bra Recyclers, and I Support the Girls, also accept gently worn or unused bras, which are repurposed or used to empower women who have experienced trafficking, violence, homelessness, impoverishment, and other hardships.

Write it Down

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Once you’ve cleared out your actual drawers, it’s time to clear out the proverbial drawers of your mind. What do you want to let go of this year? Maybe it’s a lingering heartache from a former flame, or perhaps it’s letting go of your cynical inner narrator. 

Whatever it is, write it down — and transform it into something tangible that can be discarded. If you have a flair for the dramatic, light a match and set that piece of paper ablaze. Just make sure you’re outside or near a running tap!

Cleanse Your Space

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While you’re at it, light some sage or palo santo. Known for its cleansing and purifying abilities, on a physical level it can remove bacteria from the air and repel insects, while on a spiritual level it can help with heightened intuition and the warding off of negative energy.

It also just smells great — but be sure to crack open your windows so the incense can flow freely throughout your space, allowing fresh air to circulate.

Do a Vibe Check 

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Sure, you might vibe check your roommates, your friends, your partner(s), but when was the last time you vibe checked yourself? Set aside some time to assess where your energy is at now — whether it’s reeling from the frenzy that is the holiday season or imbued with a sense of inner peace.

Going a step further, try to summarize the energy you’ve been carrying throughout the year and the energy you want to embody as you cruise into 2022. 

Find Gratitude

Yes, clearing space involves contemplating what’s no longer serving us with the intent of leaving it behind — but what about the things we want to create space for?

From your comfiest clothes (think: the Knix Cozzzy Set) to your favorite hobbies, what stirs up feelings of joy? Make a quick inventory of the things that bring you bliss and vow to cultivate more space for them in the new year.