Mental Decluttering: Spring Cleaning For Your Mind

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mental decluttering spring Providence Moms Blog

 

mental decluttering spring Providence Moms Blog

March has been pretty brutal here in New England — am I right? There have been so many Nor’easters that I am not even sure spring is actually coming anymore. She must be wandering around somewhere confused, lost, her GPS re-calculating. 

Meanwhile, I want to do all of the fun spring-y things like put up Easter decorations, plan our garden, and most importantly, spring cleaning.  Open windows and warm fresh air circulating inexplicably gives me motivation to organize, clean, and purge.  Although a clean house is great (from what I remember), it’s just not warm enough yet for me to pull out the old mop and bucket and catch that spring cleaning motivation.

This got me thinking: maybe these cold spring days can be put to good use by focusing on mental maintenance. I definitely need to get my mind more organized and in working order. 

What do I mean? Well, if you could zoom into the recesses of my brain, you would find ideas scattered and cobwebs forming. I keep moving around piles to a different place or putting things where they just don’t belong.  There are literal junk drawers forming in my brain, and it is slowing me down. My inability to organize my thoughts is affecting me, so it’s time to make some changes. So this spring, I’m taking some steps to mentally declutter.

Brain Dump

I have recently learned about something called a “Brain Dump.”  I have a friend who swears by this. Every morning, she writes down everything that is on her mind. Not necessarily a to-do list; just whatever is occupying most of her brain space that morning. She writes down everything that comes to her mind, whether it makes sense or not, and throws it away when she is finished. The idea is that getting the ideas out on paper frees her from thinking about the same things all day long.

I have tried my hand at this for a solid 4 days in a row now, and although it was difficult at first, I am finding it helpful. Emptying out the things that keep circulating really does help me not to obsess about things that need to get done, or a conversation I need to have, or already had and can’t stop replaying. Think of it like emptying out the junk drawers and sorting through what you need to keep and what you need to throw away.

Using A Nice Planner

Alright, so here comes a confession. Although I used to be a chronic planner buyer but not planner user, this is not the case anymore. A pretty planner changed my life.  And you guys, I am one of those crazies with the washi tape and stencils and good pens. It’s almost like my Lisa Frank loving inner-self just needed some fun stickers. Since investing in a pretty planner, I have been actually USING my planner for over a year now. This is revolutionary for me.

If you are in the market for a new planner or think some fun stickers might just keep you motivated enough to continue to use your planner, I suggest you get to Michael’s Craft Store and take your pick. Staying intentional reminds me of organizing the kids’ toys into those cute little square totes. Life without my planner feels like dumping the totes out everywhere- toddler style.

One Hour of Intentional Breathing Space

It is really amazing how little breathing room we are giving ourselves nowadays. For me, social media can be just as noisy as my 4 children. If I don’t carve time out of my day to be alone with my thoughts, I burn out very quickly. In the past, I have participated in media fasts and the like, but the most effective thing I have done was the one hour rule. This spring is the perfect time to implement this again and make sure I am giving myself plenty of space to process. 

Going to sleep without giving myself time to process the events of the day gives me the same feeling as leaving the house a complete disaster before laying down for the night.  If you are on your media of choice until the moment your head hits the pillow, I am proposing a challenge. One hour before bed, turn off all of your electronic devices. Let’s give ourselves one hour of silence to think, write, and process. One hour to work on deep breathing, prayer, or stretches. Let’s make that hour our own bedtime routine, and see how giving ourselves that space improves our daily mindset.


Readers, I would love to hear about your mental decluttering ideas for spring. Do you have any routines you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments, I’d love to learn from you!

mental decluttering spring Providence Moms Blog