Clutter is a collection of things lying around untidy. Physical clutter makes you feel uncomfortable and disorganized; mental clutter has a similar effect. Mental clutter is the excess thoughts and ideas that crowd your mind and prevent you from thinking clearly or focusing on your tasks. The overwhelming feeling of having too much to do puts your mind on overdrive and keeps you from thinking straight.
Research shows that we have about 60,000 thoughts each day. These constant thoughts can cause mental clutter and increase stress.
According to science, feeling mentally overwhelmed negatively affects us and can add to burning out and not showing up for our responsibilities. In addition, having less mind space brings anxiety, procrastination, and poor decision-making.
Mental clutter can come from different sources, including social media, work, family, and personal relationships. It can negatively impact our thoughts, feelings, and lives, leading to overwhelming feelings.
Rather than allow the clutter in your mind to pile up, try these tips for reducing mental clutter:
The simple art of writing things down on paper can make you feel lighter.
There are many things you need to remember to do in a day, and this can be overwhelming. You become exhausted mentally trying to keep up with your long to-do lists, events, appointments, grocery lists, etc.
It’s heavy to store all these things in your head, thereby creating mental clutter. Also, it’s harder to focus when your brain is working overtime thinking about what you have to do now and what you have to do in the future.
Give your brain a break; put things on paper. Every morning, I make a list where I dump everything I need to do in a day. Doing this prevents me from trying to keep track of all of my responsibilities in my mind so that I can focus on important things.
There are many things to do in a day; hence, you must decide what to do first and when. Without prioritizing, your brain is busy trying to figure out what to do first. Sometimes, you may end up focusing on a less important task which isn’t the best use of your time.
Set time aside every day to prioritize. Write down three goals you want to achieve that day and focus on tasks that align with them. Then, try to get them done early in the day when your energy levels are at their highest.
Doing this will improve your productivity and ensure you do the most important things. It also stops your mind from continually trying to prioritize what’s most important throughout the day.
Stress from a busy schedule can cause mental clutter. If you are constantly thinking of things you need to bring, where and when, you are more likely to forget something and increase mental clutter.
If you write what you are doing the next day and plan ahead, what you need to come along with, and who you need to contact, you’ll be better prepared and free your mind from having to think about it continually.
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