Clutter comes in all forms. From dirty dishes to the bills that are filling your mailbox (oh hey, I have both of those!), to even the things that clutter your mind. Shall we dub this, “mind clutter”? For me, mind clutter is often caused by distractions, and those distractions are noise, almost always keeping me from doing the things I truly would rather be doing. But I forget about those things because I am, welp, distracted.
Are you following me? I catch myself in more than just these few examples far too often:
- I still haven’t gotten past the first chapter on my new book I’ve been itching to read (…thought while watching a cringe worthy Lifetime movie)
- I need to finally respond to (insert old friend’s name)’s email…tomorrow (…I think while browsing a new online catalog that just popped in my morning inbox)
- It’s midnight, and that damn deliciously cute kid will be up at 5 a.m. I NEED to go to bed (…I mumble aloud with droopy eyes staring at the computer screen, because apparently stalking blogs is always more important than the sanity of sleep)
Sound familiar? I feel digitally defeated and I want my mind back! (waves fist in the air).
Even though I’m spending this time between now and when we move into our sweet tiny home to shed so much physical stuff, both previously and now with The 100 Thing Challenge, I’m realizing stuff is not the only perpetrator of my attention.
My three main mind clutter offenders I’m going to tackle first? Computer. Television. Junk mail (the virtual kind). I’ll confess my iPhone is my complete guilty pleasure, and it hogs way too much of my day. But I’m just not ready to go there. Not yet.
When I recently asked you guys on Facebook if you could live without TV, I was quite surprised by how many of you already are. You guys trying to make me look bad or what? It was refreshing, actually, and propelled me to take mind-clutter by the horns. Or…by the keyboard…or cable box…or…you get it.
How to start shedding distractions: (join me, will you?)
Computer: The internet is really what hogs my time more than anything. I’m a research-a-holic and could dig and retrieve things that interest me endlessly. Other days, I feel like I mindlessly bop around, searching the WWW for something to do. Considering how little free time I actually get, this habit is munching away at my valuable time. The fix attempt: Computer free days. I’m settling on three for now. Three whole days a week where I go computer commando.
Television: In all honesty I really am not a big TV addict. I’m clueless about all the “cool” shows and always understand all the one-liners people are quoting from who knows where about a year too late. I’m fine with it, I prefer it. But any Mama will tell you, days are long. After little person’s bedtime I’m plain beat and it’s turned into a habit to sit in bed and turn on the tube. I seem to prefer shows that will purposely rot my brain cells or my sense of security (Lifetime movies & Criminal Minds anyone?). To add some fuel to the brain fryer, I’m usually one the computer too (like, right now.) The fix attempt: I want to give TV-free a test drive first, so I’m kicking off with one week sans the television- including all movies/DVD as well. After that, I’d like to shoot for a month without, to see if I can survive.
Junk Mail: It always seems like a good idea, signing up for all those newsletters to get updated on good deals and discounts, or those jerks who make you provide an email in order to access their site- then bombard your inbox with ridiculously tempting subject lines you just have to click (although a few of my fav sites do this- and I always click. Well played my friend, well played). The worst ones are the ones I cave into buying something because I’m convinced from that single newsletter that sale will never happen again, I need to buy! The fix attempt: Delete. This fixin’ is a two-fold, because while I’m doing myself some precious time saving, I’m doing a little bit of budget saving too. It should help nix many of my impulse internet buys. I’m going through my account, slow-but-sure, and weeding out the 100+ update emails (shameful, I know) I get on a regular basis.
Self-challenge accepted. I’ll give myself a report card in another week or so.
Any of these, or any other modern distractions, you feel is “mind clutter” in your life? Are you ready to make attempts to nix it?