If you are like most people, you may be suffering from mental clutter. This is a mind filled with stuff that does not serve you and drags you down instead of lifting you up.
While most people are aware of what is meant by physical clutter, and the negative psychological effects the presence of such physical junk can have, fewer people are aware of the clutter contained between their ears. Yet, it is precisely this mental clutter that can thwart so many of your dreams before they even have a chance to be born.
Is your mind full of stuff that does not really serve you and takes you nowhere at all? Or is it clear, targeted and focused?
The difference between these two states of mind is as different as night and day. Only you can really tell where your mind rests right now.
What is mental clutter anyway?
It can be many things….
To-do lists you insist on keeping in your head. Grudges against other people. Mental shortcuts that don’t serve you, such as a tendency to instantly jump to a negative judgmental way of thinking in the face of any new challenge. Subtle ways of short-circuiting your energies, such as thinking of all the things that could go wrong with a potential new venture, and therefore not even commencing it in the first place. Habit patterns inherited from people long forgotten that you nevertheless faithfully follow like one hypnotized.
Moreover, mental clutter also arises from the necessities of daily living; everyday worries and concerns, holiday and house plans, too much TV, and a ton of other things that people unconsciously allow to fill their brains. The conscious mind can only take so much. Once it is is filled with garbage, there is little or no room left for the good stuff; the stuff that really gets you places. That is one major cause for people remaining exactly where they are in life.
If you ever take time out to examine the contents of your mind, you will probably be amazed at just how much mental clutter there is.
What can you do about it?…
(1) Get clear that the clutter is there in the first place. This means that you must be willing to take a good hard look at your habitual thinking. What are your thinking habit patterns? If you continually feel mentally drained, WHY? What is draining your mental and emotional energy? Where is it being drained off to?
(2) Identify the mental clutter that is present. Honest self-examination is the only way. You have to be willing to take time to examine your internal mental states. What is your mind full of? Practical preoccupations and fears? Insecurity? Deep-seated grudges against people and society?
It is different for each person. What is holding you back? Just as physical clutter cleaning requires you to go about the house and identify stuff you haven’t used for years, that is lying there and gathering dust, so too does the process of mental clutter clearing require a similar effort.
Your mental clutter is individual to you, as is your physical clutter. And by the way, the two are very closely related. If you want to get some clues on your mental clutter, take a look at your physical junk!
(3) Take definite steps to reduce and finally eliminate your mental clutter.
This is easier than it sounds. However, it can be done. Becoming aware of your clutter is critical, because you cannot remedy something you do not know exists. Once you are aware of it, retain that awareness in your mind and watch for the clutter whenever it comes up.
You may wish to use some sort of meditation or visualization process to eradicate the mental hang-up. There are many such available. Also, many of the techniques of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) can be very useful in this respect.
This step will definitely take time, as our minds are far more occupied with junk than we dare admit or imagine. As you chuck some of it out, more will rise to the surface. In a sense, this is a never-ending life task…
(4) Continue back to step (1).
In other words, continue to identify the mental garbage and unhelpful habit patterns. Frankly, just doing a simple process like this will place you way ahead of the vast majority of the population, who have little or no idea of the heaps of festering stuff lying dankly between their ears.
If you can clear your mental clutter, you create space within you for wonderful things to happen. That is why it is a vital activity, and one you need to commence today and continue forever throughout your life.
Remember that the quality of your life begins with the quality of your thoughts. Make sure that your mental life is the best it can be. You will surely see the results in your outer life as well.
Copyright Asoka Selvarajah. All Rights Reserved.