April is finally among us and I’m so excited to kick off this new month with the things I learned from last month. The overall theme for March was to “be minimal”. I really took that to heart since embracing a more minimal lifestyle is one of my goals for 2017. I learned that being minimal does not necessarily mean upending your whole apartment and getting rid of everything in your life. It goes beyond that through minimizing the clutter in your mental space and putting more intention into your thoughts and actions.
After completing MuchelleB’s Simplify Your Life Challenge and reflecting on this past month, I realized that decluttering your mental space is just as important as decluttering your physical space. Here are some reasons why.
You will know what makes you happy.
To put it simply, figuring out the diversification of your happiness is the first step to sifting through the junk in your mind. This article from YesandYes really opened up my eyes to what diversifying your happiness means and how you can define what that for yourself.
To get an idea of that “diversified happiness”, here are some of the things that make me happy:
- Walking into an open, spacious cafe, ordering tea or a white mocha latte, and sitting down at a spacious table with plenty of outlets to get work done.
- Having an intense work out at Flywheel or Core Power and feeling like I destroyed my body but also strengthened it.
- Editing and completing a video and feeling happy with the final result
- Engaging in deep conversations with friends at random places like Panda Express
You have a clearer picture of what you should give no f*cks about.
Let’s be real — caring too much about certain things really takes up a lot of mental energy. In reality, it’s better to literally not give a f*ck about what you truly don’t care about. It helps to clear up your mental space and eliminate unnecessary overthinking. The trick to this is to write down everything that comes to mind that you are unsure about, and make the final decision whether to care or not. For me, I have fully decided to not care about what other people think and disregard people that do not add value in my life.
You are grateful for the smallest things.
Gratitude is such an important part of mental decluttering. When you practice gratitude, you see life through a different perspective and learn to understand that although life can get hard, there are still reasons to wake up every day and to still love the life we live. Practicing gratitude helps when you get very specific. It can be simple as, “I am grateful for the smell of candles in the morning” or as specific as, “I am grateful for my mom for cooking Pilipino food when I visit.”
You become smarter with your finances.
Finances is a struggle for everyone, and worrying about money takes up so much mental space. The best thing to do is to tackle it straight on. Engage with your bank statements, figure out what expenses you need to invest in, come up with a robust savings plan and stick to the budget. Keeping to a system will ultimately clear off the weight on your shoulders and free your mind for other important matters.
You eliminate negative attitudes.
It’s so hard to fully take out the negative attitudes and mindsets that infiltrate our brains, but identifying them and targeting them so that they phase out is the first step to eliminating it. Once you identify that negative attitude, figure out the reasons why your brain sticks to it and combat it with evidence that proves the opposite of that negative mindset.
Your goals are clearer and you stay true to your commitments.
I personally have so many goals that sometimes I don’t even know which one to tackle first. There are so many things I love to do and I want to do it all. But the truth is, there is only so much your body can handle without burning out. Respect your goals, commitments and body by prioritizing, figuring out what should take more importance and sacrificing anything that shouldn’t take up time throughout your day or scheduling it for later in the week. Ask yourself what the intention is behind the commitments you have and if it is worth it for you. This will create more long term efficiency and happiness.
You are present minded and mindful.
Sometimes for me, the future is constantly looming ahead of me and the past is always haunting behind me. Honestly, none of it matters because we are living in the now. The future and the past do not affect how you can take action in the present. We sometimes forget that we are in control of the driver’s wheel and that the past and future should only serve as guiding points. Some ways you can practice mindfulness is to check in with your body every once in awhile and try out meditation. (Headspace is a great app if you want to start!)
You take care of yourself and your general wellbeing.
Mental decluttering teaches you how to take better care of yourself and how to love yourself, which ultimately leads to a well-balanced, beautiful life. Soon you will live the best possible version of yourself after take the time to mentally declutter.
The Simplify Your Life Challenge is officially over for me, but the journey to continue decluttering both my physical and mental spaces is just beginning.
Thank you for reading ❤️ Let me know in the comments if you have any other ways of decluttering your mind and body! I’d love to hear more.