Feel like your mind is bursting at the seams with all the things you’re trying to remember? I know exactly how you feel! In this post, I’m sharing five things I do whenever I need to clear the mental clutter so that I can think more clearly.
Simple ways to clear the mental clutter…
Do you ever feel like you’re trying to remember so many things that if you added just one more thing to the list your head would explode? Maybe you find it hard to stop all the noise and switch off your brain for just five minutes so you can think more clearly and feel less stressed.
If so, I hear you!
When we declutter our minds, we’re able to focus on living the best life we want to live WITHOUT being distracted by all of the day-to-day. But, how do we do it? Read this post, because in it, I’m sharing how I get rid of the mental clutter and clear my headspace so that I can think straight, feel more focused and get more done so that you can do the same too.
The effects of mental clutter…
Just like your physical environment can be cluttered, so can your mind. Mind clutter often manifests itself as circular thoughts, an inability to sleep and even a failure to focus on the job at hand due to problems elsewhere.
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When our minds are cluttered…
When my mind is cluttered, I can’t think straight. I get overwhelmed by all the thoughts of all of the things I need to do. And when that happens, I start to feel stressed. And unfortunately for my family, I get a little snappish too. It also makes me want to give up and not do anything.
Thankfully, there are a few things we can do to declutter our minds and clear the mental clutter before we get to that point. Whenever I feel myself starting to get overwhelmed, I do these things and it helps every single time. And they can help you too.
So, are you ready to find out how to clear the mental clutter? Let’s dive in!
Watch my video about clearing mental clutter…
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#1: Clear your physical environment
The first thing you can do to clear the mental clutter is to clear your physical environment. A cluttered environment can negatively affect your mind. Feel mentally uncluttered by cleaning up the environment and removing that excess clutter!
I know for me that if my house is a mess, I cannot think straight and I can’t focus on my work. I actually have to tidy up the house and have it nice and clean before I can sit down and focus on my tasks. If I’m distracted knowing there’s mess everywhere, I’m not going to get anything done.
So, if it’s the same with you, start with the obvious. Which space causes you the most issue in your mental clutter? Is it your office? Your kitchen? The spare room? Maybe it’s the garage or your car. Maybe it’s all of the above! Pick the one that frustrates you the most. Get rid of all of the things you no longer use or need and give the space a really good clean.
When everything’s nice and tidy, you’ll find you can think more clearly too. Your mind will feel freer because you’re not distracted by everything that’s around you. You’ll be able to focus on whatever it is you are working on so much better.
#2: Do a mind dump
One of the very best ways to get started on clearing the mental clutter is something that I’ll do first BEFORE I do anything else. What is it? A mind dump!
If we want to think more clearly, we need to put all the thoughts whizzing around our brains down onto paper. Trying to remember all the things we need to do is hard when there are multiple things going on in our head. But when we write them down it becomes a whole lot easier to see what we’ve got. We’re able to work out our priorities and figure out what we can let go of.
So, grab yourself a pen and paper. Set aside a few minutes and just write down every single thing that comes to mind. Everything you’re trying to remember you need to do. Don’t worry about it being in any kind of order at this point, you’re simply getting it out of your head and onto paper.
Doing this is incredibly freeing. Your brain feels so much clearer once you’ve done it!
Mind dumps are one of my absolute favourite ways to clear the mental clutter. And once you’ve done it, you can use your list to work out what’s important, what’s urgent and what to scrub from your list. Which brings me onto strategy #3…
#3: Use lists to help you make decisions
The third way to clear the mental clutter is to use lists to make decisions. We might think that we have good memories but it’s impossible to remember everything. We just can’t do it – no matter how hard we try! And all that extra energy we use trying to remember everything tires out our brains.
So, do yourself a favour and use lists to make decisions. Stop trying to remember it all in your head. We’ve just done a mind dump written everything down. Now it’s time to take it to the next level. Use that mind dump list to create lists to figure out what you need to do.
Create a master task list…
Create a master task list and order everything according to priority. Then, create a five-minute task list. Go through your master task list and make a new list of all the things you can do in the time it takes to boil the kettle. Then, whenever you have a few minutes, you can go through the list and pick something.
Keep your lists handy and anytime you think of something, add it to it. Don’t forget to tick things off when you’ve done them too. That’s the most satisfying part!
Use a chatty mind notebook…
The other kind of list I like to have – especially when I’m working because my mind never stops buzzing, is what I call my ‘chatty mind notebook’. Any thought that pops into my head that’s a distraction from what I’m doing, I’ll write in my notebook. Then, at the end of the day, I go through it and action or transfer the items to the relevant list. It really helps me stay clear and focus on what I’m working on. Plus, it’s a really good excuse to buy another pretty notebook too!
#4: Automate your life
Automating your life is a very simple but super smart exercise. Knowing that things like bills being paid on time happen on autopilot is a great stress reliever. Relatively easy to set up, putting things on autopilot helps clear the mental clutter because you’re not having to remember to do everything all the time. It happens automatically.
Not only does putting things on autopilot give you less to think about but it helps you take back your time too. It leaves you feeling more organised and knocks a few things off that to-do list. So, what tasks can you automate that’ll help clear your mental clutter?
Look at every aspect of your life and ask what tasks and activities can be automated. Use internet banking. Create standing orders and direct debits for paying your bills and topping up your savings. Use autoresponders and canned emails at work. Use ‘if this then that’ applications IFTTs). Take advantage of home delivery services for your groceries. Use subscribe and save options on Amazon.
#5: Make time for self-care
Finally, and probably the most important strategy for reducing the mental clutter is taking the time for self-care. We know that self-care is important but for some reason, it always gets bumped to the bottom of the list. We feel like we don’t deserve it, that it’s not important enough when there are so many other things to do. But actually, self-care isn’t selfish. It’s necessary.
There’s nothing more selfless than taking care of ourselves so that we can take care of the ones we love. And if we’re always on the go, if we’re always planning, always thinking and always doing, our brains get tired. And so, in order to avoid mental burnout, we need to give ourselves time for regular mental self-care.
Just like our cars need refueling and our mobile phones need charging, we need to take time for ourselves too. And that includes time to mentally recharge as well as physical self-care. So, if you’re feeling like your head is going to explode, if you feel like your brain simply cannot create one more thought, it’s probably for some mental self-care.
Take time for you…
Unplug. Meditate. Sit in silence. Do something that doesn’t feel like work. Something that allows your brain time to pause and regroup. This is usually a good time to do a mind dump too. Because, if you’re going to meditate or unplug for a while, it’s going to be hard to switch off if you’re distracted by a ton of thoughts.
Make your self-care a priority. Tell yourself that nothing is more important than you filling your cup first so that you can then take care of everyone else. And when you’ve done it, you’ll come back fresher and more focused.
Five ways to clear the mental clutter…
There you have it, my best tips for clearing the mental clutter! Anytime you feel like you’re getting to that point of mental clutter and mental overload again come back to these five things and repeat. They work for me every time and they’ll work for you too. So, pick one and do it today!
Here they are again:
- Clear your physical environment.
- Do a mind dump.
- Use lists to help you make decisions.
- Automate your life.
- Make time for self-care.
Want more strategies like these to help you clear the mental clutter so that you can think straight? I have a FREE guide that you can download. In it, you’ll find all 5 tips from this post PLUS 5 bonus tips to help you clear the mental clutter. You’ll find it over in my Freebie Vault where you’ll find lots of other awesome resources for helping you reduce the overwhelm and take back control too!
That’s it for this post! Which of these strategies for clearing the mental clutter are you going to try first? Let me know in the comments!
Until next time…
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Hey there! In case we haven’t met, I’m Sarah and I’m incredibly passionate about helping others step out of a life on autopilot and into one of purpose.
I’m on a mission to help you become your BEST self and live your BEST life every single day – and that includes clearing the mental clutter with the help of these fun and simple strategies!
A certified master life coach, transformation coach, goal success coach and self-published author, I’m also an Executive Contributor for Brainz Magazine, a proud mum of two, a besotted wife, breast cancer survivor and your mentor for making a change for the better.
When I’m not helping my clients create a life they love, you’ll find me in my favourite Starbucks curled up in a chair, book in one hand, hazelnut latte in the other or attempting to walk my somewhat lazy Frenchie pup Arthur!