Do you ever feel like there are just too many tabs open? Only today was I sent an article about being ‘Always On’ and how hi-tech work culture is hitting family life, and the thing is it doesn’t end there!
Hi-tech and always on interrupts our day to day and I believe one of the consequences is a cluttered mind which affects our wellbeing in more ways than we can acknowledge. Creating unmanageable to-do lists and general preoccupation. Not to mention taking a phone everywhere and the incessant scrolling. A habit that we’re not quite sure how we got into but what we do know is it’s difficult to break.
Information overload is a thing and with every advertisement and story vying for your attention is it any wonder that we are bewildered and unable to see the wood for the trees. Our attention is very valuable, more on that another day though.
Towards the end of last year I got a bit fed up of being in the hamsters wheel and decided that I wasn’t going to carry on in the same vein, it is time for a change and as we all know, January is the month of the detox. For me the month of the mental detox, time to declutter and find mental space.
Improving your mindset and clearing away that mental clutter can improve your entire well-being and lead to improved decision making across the board. I can’t promise that I’m an expert but I can promise that these tried and tested methods listed below certainly helps me on a daily basis:
- Declutter Your Space
Dust and clutter blocks the natural flow of energy, whether it’s your desk or your home it’s time to clear the decks. I work by two rules, if it doesn’t serve a purpose or bring joy it can go. It’s that simple.
I think it’s a myth, I rarely successfully complete two thing simultaneously and with that in mind I try to focus on one thing at a time and get it done before moving onto the next. I find it much more satisfying and productive.
- Reduce Noise and Negativity
If you’re like me, you’ll notice that you can easily pick up on other people’s energy. That’s why it’s so important to give yourself the time and space to know what’s energetically yours and what your picking up from your environment. The same is true of our cyber environment too, we are bombarded from so many different streams of news and social media it is easy to fill your day and avoid spending time with your own thoughts and emotions.
I have a few ways of dealing with this;
I am deliberate about the streams of information I allow myself to be bombarded with daily. I ensure they all have a positive affect and, in some way, or another inspire something inside of me. I achieved this by noticing when I felt upset and stressed and the figuring out where that thought had come from and why. I then worked out if it was something I could resolve, if I could great! If not then it might be time to let go. So for me this meant hitting the ‘unsubscribe’ and ‘unfollow’ button more ties than I care to admit. It also means switching the radio and TV off if I’m finding it a little overwhelming. It also means being mindful with whom I spend time, and which papers and magazines I read.
For me this isn’t about running away it’s about protecting myself from a whole load of unnecessary stressors and replacing them with things I find uplifting and useful OR just giving myself some space and time to be with myself.
- Be mindful of toxic dynamics
Okay, most of us have heard of toxic relationships or toxic people – it’s not a term I particularly like because I’m not one for abandoning my responsibility so I prefer to think of it as taking an active role of selfcare within a toxic dynamic of people. This way it won’t burden blame and it doesn’t render you powerless either.
Firstly, listen to how you feel. Do you always feel stressed, tearful or upset after being with a certain person? Do they always without fail put you down and criticize your every move? Are they happy to see you happy? – This is a BIG one!
With this in mind, decide consciously whether that person or people are the types of people you want to spend your free time with. Or how much time you are happy to give to the relationship and go from there. If you change, the dynamic will change too.
It is unbelievable how surrounding yourself with positive, loving relationships that genuinely want the best for you can transform your mental chatter and therefore your life in turn.
- Get Distracted
This sounds so counter intuitive however to be fully distracted and utterly absorbed in something is wholly therapeutic. There is no room for mental clutter when you completely focused and engaged, how often do you manage to find yourself in this type of flow? My advice would be to start to notice when you are and find time for those activities.