#Organising the #mindspace:8 things I learnt!
Did you ever wake up with the mind already going in all directions, racing between to-do lists and important and unimportant things-all this on waking up, really!-and then spending the rest of the day haphazardly trying to accomplish it all without any real success?! That's exactly what happened to me the other day and as I was hopelessly trying to finish many things at the same time, I was suddenly stopped in my tracks as I beheld the embarrassing situation of my own bed-side drawer. From nose tissues, camera manuals, headphone batteries, German exercise books to anti-allergens, paracetamols and bottles of vitamin D, laptop cleaner and souvenirs from my trip to Assisi, to name a few, the chaos in the drawer represented to me, the chaos of my own restless mind! Whoever said that the state of one's drawers and cupboards reflected one's state of mind, knew exactly what he was talking about!
Honestly, I had been feeling quite out of sorts for a few days before and was not so up for life as I should have been and after a period of general introspection, I did get down to figuring out the cause of this mess and what I needed to do to get out of it! Usually it's not so easy to make the switch, especially when the influence of environment and bad-habits is strong enough to dull the power of initiative to think and will and act! So not trusting myself to the circumstances I found myself in, I decided to go on a spiritual retreat to help re-align my life to my highest goals and desires. I drew up the following list of things that I learnt from this experience and to help clear the mind-space and get life back on track again! Hope it helps whoever who reads it!
1. Addiction leads to loss of will-power
On a recent holiday abroad, I had bought myself the Bose Noise Cancellation QC 25 Headphones and before I knew I was completely addicted. I loved the way how the sound faded when I put them on and I never enjoyed watching movies so much as when I had them on--the result was I started watching too many films and one night I actually sat through a television series for 17 hours straight, which dulled my senses so completely that I almost had no will-power remaining to do anything worthwhile anymore! Having absorbed the confusion of the live's of the characters of the TV series, the mind became cluttered and disoriented and I felt depressed and unhappy for many days. As a result my cupboards and drawers and my room and work-space, everything was chaotic and messy and I felt totally drained of energy.
2. Excess is bad!
Having too many unnecessary necessities consumes not only a lot of precious time and energy to looking after them but also takes up precious closet-space which in turn influences the mind-space-the mind starts feeling chaotic, cluttered and disoriented and such a mind cannot think clearly nor make effective decisions and is easily influenced by extreme emotions, thereby retarding progress and taking out the happiness from life.
3. Uni-tasking to multi-tasking
I have found that focusing my entire attention to what I am doing in the present, whether talking to a friend or drinking coffee or working, helps me perform much better and also leaves me with a feeling of satisfaction of having done my best. On the other hand, when I am trying to handle different tasks at the same time together, my efficiency decreases and my mind tends to become confused and disordered; I may even forget to do some of the important things that needed to be done, putting me behind schedule and making me go off-track from my goals.
4. The importance of having the right to-do lists
Having to-do lists with important and urgent things clearly defined is an absolute essential to organizing mind-space! Sometimes we devote all our attention in doing urgent things ignoring those important things that will eventually help us to achieve our big dreams of life. This creates a feeling of failure and guilt in the mind and to avoid getting in this trap, it would be helpful to devote atleast some part of the day to doing those important things that nurture us and make us happy, knowing that by doing them, we are slowly but steadily progressing towards our cherished goals.
5. Being realistic about time and work goals
Sometimes in order to be able to do everything in a day, we put extra pressure on ourselves that makes us nervous and emotional, so that we may make wrong decisions or may have to redo everything from the day before! Therefore, it is very important to be realistic about our own capacity to perform and accordingly set realistic goals. At other times, despite our best time-management skills, something unforeseen comes up that requires our full attention and can delay other tasks. The mind should be trained in such a way, that it can adapt to changes at a quick notice without feeling overburdened.
6. Stop procrastinating, start acting
We want to be conscious individuals and know where our life is taking us. If we have some bad-habits that make us procrastinate and stand in our way of success, we should decide to give them up.
7. Stop looking at the phone or tablets first thing on waking up!
This one has been tough for me to overcome. The days I wake up checking messages on my iPhone and even browsing websites on the iPad, I feel totally disoriented for the rest of the day and don't feel that I have enough will-power left to be able to accomplish all the good things I wanted to do that day!
8. Exercise, meditation and leading a balanced life
Creating will-power in our lives through exercise, using that will power to meditate and calm the mind, and using the clarity and understanding we get out of meditation to live a balanced life is something that works for me to create an organized mind-space, but it is a constant struggle and requires constant effort to keep winning!
I guess it's just not a few set points that we can follow to de-clutter our minds--we need to become conscious of our whole life, realizing that it is we who are responsible about what we take in our mind space and what we decide to leave out. There is a lot of trash in the world and at the end of the day, nobody cares for our happiness and well-being as much as we care for it ourselves. This is probably how life is modeled--I always found the paradox very interesting that happiness is something that we need to struggle for. It is an effort but well worth it!