In this crazy world of to-do lists, instant communication and electronic overload many of us suffer with the inability to shut our minds off! Whether it is our stress over all our obligations, the limiting self-talk we constantly tell ourselves, the ruminations over the past or the fear of the future – we all need tools to help us unwind and hit the pause button to clear out the junk and start fresh again.
Here are some of Certified Business and Life Coach Celia Ward-Wallace favorite methods for hitting the restart button and clearing the mind:
Socializing, Conversation & Laughter:
One of the best ways to unwind is to think of who in your life you enjoy the most and spend some quality time with them having fun. When we spend time with our favorite people, it allows us to release stress and let go of anything weighing on our heads. Talk therapy and laughter therapy are two of the lowest cost and most effective ways to let go of the trouble we have bottled up.
Meditation is a simple and extremely effective way of quieting our minds and alleviating stress in the moment. Meditation can be the act of doing anything where your mind concentrates on one thing. It can be gardening, reading, cooking and of course sitting still and breathing. Taking as little of 5 minutes a day to sit still and breathe has been proven to lower stress and ease many health issues, such as high blood pressure, depression, and anxiety.
3. Positive Affirmations:
We all have so much mind chatter and negative self-talk going 24 hours a day! In order to de-clutter our minds it is SUPER helpful to become fully aware of the conversations we have with ourselves in our head. Once we become conscious of the negative self-talk, we can create positive self-talk to replace those thoughts. So, write down all the negative stories you tell yourself about your past, your failures, mistakes, worries and fears. Then take each statement and write a positive affirmation in opposition to that statement. When that negative statement comes back into your mind, recognize it and say the positive affirmation over in its place. You can also write all your affirmations down and print them out. Read them daily in the morning and at night this will reprogram your subconscious so that you don’t have the negative thoughts, instead the positive thoughts will begin to be your default setting.
Sleeping lets your mind rest and hit the reset button. Sleep is one of the best and easiest tools we have to de-clutter our mind. Usually when we wake up we feel lighter, refreshed and energized and often have a shift in perspective. Often sleeping is where we have some of greatest creative inspirations, waking up full of excitement about a new idea which came forth because of the space made in the mind by going to sleep. When you have a decision to make and your mind feels too full, before going to bed, ask yourself “what should I do about this situation?” and then go to bed. Many times, this will give you so much more clarity and you will know exactly what to do.
5. Stay-cation AWAY from Home:
Stay-cations are awesome because you don’t have to pay for travel, but get all the benefits of a vacation. Pick a day or two a month to go to a local hotel. It’s ME-TIME and so schedule it in advance. This is an easy getaway because there is no housework, bills and distractions. Taking the time to unwind is so helpful in releasing stress and mind-clutter.
6. 24 hours with NO electronics (DEVICE DETOX!!):
In this crazy instant communication world this piece of advice may be one of the hardest to implement, but it is one of the most valuable! One of the reasons for our mind-clutter is that our sub-conscious mind is processing so many pieces of information every second. The more you get on the computer to do emails, use Facebook and watch TV the more info overload your mind experiences. Plan one day a month to be your “no-electronics” day and make it a “self-care” day.
7. Be of Service – Shift Your Perspective:
Our minds get so full of all the demands of our lives, sometimes it is hard to recognize all of the blessings we have to be grateful for. Focusing on positive things in our lives and the daily benefits we have helps us keep our stress and mental clutter in perspective. One of the best ways to do this is by being of service to others and getting outside of ourselves. It is important to remember it is not always about us, but that others are going through hard times and can use our help as well. Look for opportunities to get involved and lend a helping hand.
Being of service to others helps to put in perspective all of the amazing things in our lives that we have to be thankful for. When we focus on gratitude and service the dilemmas in our heads begin to lessen and instead are filled with feelings of hope, connection and abundance.