I have exactly seven weeks left in my current apartment – aside from finding a new place, getting movers and remembering exactly how many companies I need to submit a change of address form to, the most daunting task ahead is packing and cleaning.

I just discovered (for the sake of this post) that I have moved 15 times in 13 years. I’ve had ten addresses. Needless to say, I should be an expert at this packing up and moving gig. Here’s where I fail, though – I always wait until the last minute to tackle packing and cleaning, at which point I have amassed enough clutter and mess to cause a total meltdown.

In thinking about this, I’ve realized that the same can apply, metaphorically, to my life.

An apartment is easier to clean and organize when you tackle it one room at a time, before it becomes a total disaster. By letting go of unnecessary things that clutter my living space before they become overwhelming, I surely can cut down on the time I spend trying to correct it.

My friend Beth and I have had a number of discussions about “toxic people” – everyone has them – whether it’s the friend who only calls you when he needs a favor, the ex who likes to flirt with you (even though he is with someone else) or the guy who only comes around on weeknights after midnight. Much like house clutter, toxic people don’t go away until you choose to rid your life of them. By waiting to take control of people and situations that make your life feel cluttered and out of control, situations only tend to worsen.

It’s time to spring clean – to figure out who I really need in my life and who is still there because, much like the plastic box of “sentimental t-shirts” in my closet, I have yet to figure out how to truly let go. I need to re-evaluate what it is that I really want – I think that I know, but then I see myself making decisions that are in complete opposition to those goals. I need to figure out which people and choices are getting me closer to who and where I want to be … and which ones are pushing me further away.

It’s time to re-arrange.

“And if you really want to shake it off

You gotta re-arrange”
– “The Re-Arranger”
Mates of State