Welcome to Part 4 of the Home Management Series! So far we have talked about the physical space in your home with Decluttering and Simplifying and Cleaning. The next few weeks will focus on the systems and the routines that keep everything running smoothly. I’m excited to dive into those areas with you! However, I would be remiss if I didn’t also mention that the mental aspect of simplying and decluttering is just as important as the physical. So before we move on, today we are going to talk about: Clearing Mental Clutter.
In today’s world, we all seem to have a million things going at all times. It can be overwhelming with the number of items on our to-do list and those nagging voices in our head constantly running with what needs to be done now. This is something that I have really struggled with in the past. Always feeling like I’m behind and not living up to society’s standards of “the perfect wife, perfect mom, perfect friend”. You can read more about my journey here, if you want more specifics. But the point is that I have been there and I have also spent a lot of time getting out of that headspace and clearing out all the destructive and overwhelming thoughts. I hope this post today will give you a few places to start.
Yes, I’m referring to social media. I think this is the first step because the research shows that we are spending A LOT of time on our phones looking at our feeds. The first step in clearing out the mental stuff has to start here. Answer these questions for yourself: Is your feed uplifting you or draining you? Is there anyone that gives you negative comparison-type feelings? Today I am giving you permission to unfollow. And if you don’t want to unfollow…you can also mute accounts so they won’t pop into your feed.
It doesn’t stop at social media. I also want you to look into the podcasts you are listening to, the books you are reading. Any content that is coming into your life — start paying attention to it. You have the choice to fill your mind with content that encourages, uplifts and pushes you forward. Get rid of the rest of it.
As women, the majority of the extra capacity falls onto our shoulders. One way to start taking things off our mental plate (and physical plate) is to outsource. I will talk in more detail about this concept later in the series but a good place to start is to make a list of everything that you are doing on a daily basis. Once you have the list ask yourself: is there anything that can obviously be done by someone else? If so, get help!
Journaling & Brain Dump
Along similar lines, another thing that helps me tremendously when I am feeling overwhelmed by the thoughts in my brain is to set a timer for 15 mins and write out any stresses, fears, anxieties, and to-dos. Once the timer goes off, take a look at the list and start crossing off anything that doesn’t have to be done immediately. Prioritize the rest. It’s amazing how much of the stuff clogging up your mental space is actually not important or urgent.
I also find huge benefits from journaling. I have recently incorporated specific time designated to journaling into my morning routine. It helps me get all of my thoughts out of my brain and onto paper so I can see them and figure out solutions. The best resource here and the practice I follow is Morning Pages from The Artist’s Way.
I have long been a Rachel Hollis fan and her Start Today Journal practice has been so important to my mental health. I start each day by listing out 5-10 things I am grateful for. Small things like a hot cup of coffee or a beautiful sunrise. It helps to keep everything else in perspective.
Back to basics
And finally but also importantly, make sure you are getting enough sleep and exercise. It’s simple but there is so much goodness that comes from moving your body and getting a good night’s sleep. Find time for these in your day and the rest of it will fall into place! I have written more about both of these topics here and here.
Today’s topic is such a big one to tackle in one blog post. I hope the below resources can help you to continue your exploration into mental clutter:
Valerie McFarland Blog post: 4 Steps to Create a Better Sleep Routine
Valerie McFarland Blog post: My Weekly Workout Plan
Thanks for tuning in! See you back here next week as we dive into routines & systems. XO