Time Management

Clear your mental clutter and be more productive

Mental and physical clutter prevents us from being productive and finding our inner balance. So, here are 5 ways to deal with it.

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Mental clutter is common! We have so much going on in our minds and being unable to clear the clutter and focus is hindering our ability to be productive or find balance. It even negatively affects our mental health by increasing stress and anxiety. 

Researchers at Princeton University Neuroscience Institute posit that physical clutter in your home and work environment is linked to mental clutter. In other words, that messy desk of yours is making it harder for you to focus on the tasks at hand.

So how do we declutter our minds and our space?

Mental clutter

Have you heard of the KonMarie method by Marie Kondo? This method tackles decluttering your stuff by category instead of by room-by-room. The principal is not about tidying, it is really about discarding of items that lack value and do not bring joy.

Marie Kondo’s 5 categories are:

  • Clothes
  • Books
  • Papers
  • Komono (a.k.a. miscellaneous items)
  • Sentimental Items

If that task seems too big and too onerous because you have to commit and really commit (because otherwise clutter just moves from one room to the next right?)

Project 333

then perhaps start with your wardrobe and test out Project 333 (it’s a book). Wear just 33 items for 3 months and discover how liberating “less is more” really is. Live simply, remove the worry about what you’re going to wear and thrive.

Minimalism (and the movie)

If you need the inspiration to declutter or explore a more minimalist lifestyle watch Minimalism on Netflix “Minimalism (the movie) is all about making a lifestyle change by getting rid of things that you don’t need, things that do not add value to your life, in order to make room for the things in life that are actually important such as relationships and passions with more freedom and less stress.”

Commit to decluttering

and block out time to do it.  Even if you choose to do one room – your bedroom, for example. For me, my bedroom is my sanctuary. It’s where I rest, recoup and can have peace and quiet. If my room is cluttered, it definitely affects my mind. Find your sanctuary or make a sanctuary in your home or office which is clutter free.

Be in the moment

Whatever task or activity you have at hand, be present in that moment, mindful of giving it your undivided attention.  This will promote a clear mind.

Mental clutter quote: When we throw out the physical clutter, we clear our minds. When we throw out the mental clutter, we clear our souls.

Emotional decluttering

You’re thinking… What? Come on, this isn’t a thing, is it? Yes, it is. Us mums are VERY good at pushing our feelings and emotions aside, we have our families and we put them first. To emotionally declutter, you don’t need to deep dive into all of your emotions BUT you can:

  • Identify your emotion and what has triggered it.
  • acknowledge them. You won’t believe the freedom acknowledging your feelings gives.
  • Set yourself goals (not emotional ones, work/life ones) as this helps work through the clutter and focus on other things.
  • Get support for that emotional clutter you’ve been carrying for some time.

And finally, for me, my gratitude journal has brought newfound peace and freedom to my mind as the focus is positive and grounds me.