The funny thing about clutter is that the more stuff we have the better we should feel because in the pile of stuff our needs should be met?! But with too much stuff we can lose items, and then rebuy them. When we can forget we have an item and rebuy it. We can have duplicates of items and have the hassle to store the second item you don’t need. Too much stuff is time, energy, and money-sucking. But here’s the thing — so is mental clutter. And mental clutter will keep you up at night.
Let’s talk about stopping mental clutter.
Let’s talk about three different techniques and strategies that you can try today if your head feels like it’s spinning in circles. But before we jump in tell me if this sounds familiar.
It’s the end of the day and it’s been a busy day. You know because you are feeling really tired but when you stop for a minute and close your eyes you can’t quite list out what you actually got done today.
Also when you close your eyes you have a hard time focusing on a thought. Your mind jumps from thought to thought to thought. Never really landing on a thought and diving deep.
Because of the brain fog and the jumping thoughts, you suspect that what you did get done was not what you really wanted to get done.
You have a dream, plan, and goal for your life deep down — the thing you’d love to work on but never do because your days are busy looking like the day that you just had.
Raising my hand here because this is me. Sometimes I feel like there are days that I have it together and I’m like Fat Amy off of Pitch Perfect. “Crushed It!” she says.
But most days, especially before I had coaching, I did this nearly every day. So let’s stop the mental clutter spinning and get some traction on organizing our thoughts and making sure we are focusing on what really matters.
It’s not directly the clutter but the mind that is spinning and won’t shut off that is keeping you up at night.
It’s your cluttered mind.
Let’s talk about making the spinning stop by creating a priorities list. What are the top 3 things that you are wanting to get done tomorrow and are any of those three things an action that could involve decluttering?
As you work to declutter the house you will find the action of decluttering a relief for your mind. Not in a woo-woo way but in taking action and seeing progress. You will feel better doing some action. Promise.
Here’s where we start …
Stop The Spinning Thoughts And Sleep Better
Brain Dump a list of everything that is spinning around your mind
This is huge for getting those spinning wheels to slow down and that is a brain dump. When you get out a list or planner or paper and brain dump everything you are thinking, whether work or family or household chores, and write it all out.
Write a small number beside each item as a 1,2,3,4,
When you have your list (I always feel better already) you are going to go line by line and write down a number beside everything that you wrote as a way to rank them.
#1 being the most important and urgent, like needs to get done ASAP.
#2 is for the things that are super important and should get done this week (just not today).
#3 is that they are urgent but not important to you. They typically look like other people, like a boss or an extended family member.
#4 being if it never gets done “Who cares”.
This ranking system is not one I made up by the way but came from the Eisenhower Matrix.
Related Post: When You Don’t Know Where to Start Decluttering
From your number 1 list, what are the top three things you can do tomorrow
Alrighty, now looking at that list of level #1. What are the top 3 three things that you can focus on doing within the next 24 hours?
Because without being able to stop thinking you are obviously overwhelmed with something and maybe that something is not even the to-do list but maybe that something is the thing you are committed to doing tomorrow and you really don’t want to go. Maybe that thing is that your toddler is getting up throughout the night again and you are so exhausted it takes you twice as long just to get something done.
That’s why we have the to-do list — the thing that you can control. We are limiting it to 3 and if more gets done then awesome but if not that is fine too.
It’s all about setting intentions for the day and banishing the mental clutter. Focus on 3.
Double-check … is one of those 3 things to do tomorrow a decluttering action
This one I like to add in because even though I don’t really care if I go to bed and there is a pile of dishes on the counter, there does come a point that I’m so sick of the piles that are around my house. I don’t even realize it until I’m neck-deep.
I will keep walking by a pile of laundry or toys and dishes, and if I’ve messed up in parenting or work and I keep walking by those piles the inner monologue that is subconsciously running is one of “Wow, you can’t get anything right. Look at your house! There is junk everywhere. Your mother was right, you are a dirty slob.”
Wow, what!? Did I just say that!
You bet I did.
But I know for me that if I keep my house pile free and tidy (not sparkling clean but tidy (with 5 kids in a 1,800 sq ft house) then my mind is more at ease. I’m not subconsciously beating myself, and that’s because I’ve taken an active role that does not have clutter piles as they trigger me.
So what are your home triggers?
Do you need to have a clean kitchen counter before bed? Awesome make sure you have time set aside in your day to work on that 1 thing that is super important to you in your house.
Related Post: When You’re In The Mood To Toss Out The Clutter
Oh, the fine points of clutter that doesn’t always show up as junk in our house but shows up as the spinning wheels of our mind as we try to go to sleep at night.
Create a practice, maybe first thing in the morning or right before you go to bed or both.
- Brain dump everything that is spinning around.
- Rank them 1 – 4
- Go through your #1s and pick out 3 to work on In the next 24 hours, while trying to make one of those 3 a physical clutter check-in.