Just like it is so important to audit what we surround ourselves with, to keep our spaces and homes uncluttered and put together, it is also important to audit and track our thoughts.
Have you ever tracked what comes through your mind for just 10 minutes? Grab a notebook, a cup of coffee and find a quiet place to just be for a few minutes. (Even if that is in the bathroom. Yes, mum, I've hidden in the bathroom to reset my mind and mood sometimes. It's okay!) For the next 5-10 minutes jot down every thought that passes through. Don't audit, edit, or dismiss it. Just jot down what comes to mind.
Why? Why do this?
It is a fantastic way to declutter your mind and destress, for one. It is like emptying a shelf and wiping it down. Now it is free to hold what really matters. The key is to only put back what you need and what serves you. Sounds too simplistic, right?
Give this exercise a try for the next week.
Each day, carve out just a few minutes to do what I call a brain dump. Just get it all out onto the paper and leave it there. When your time is up, close the book and let it marinate. Revisit it in a few hours. How is the theme of that session? Was it all positive? Negative? Was there hurt or sorrow that needs to be explored? Is there a new dream blooming that you need to really dive into and start planning for?
Don't discount your thoughts.
These are your inner girl screaming out to you. Or sometimes she is screaming at you to get moving too. If your theme was a bit negative, change the pov. What is something you can do to change the feeling? Is there an action you can take to wipe it out and make it positive.
An example: One prevailing thought that always held me down was "Wow, I need to lose weight, I'm so fat." Oh wow! That is harsh and so not serving you, is it? Can we be better? Absolutely. How do we turn this around when the thought passes through? How about, today, I'm going to stretch or take the kids for a walk so we can feel good and make better habits. I'm so worth it! It is one action that takes that critical thought and puts positive action on it. Something to give you a win - win - win.
Another example: I have so much to do. The house is a wreck. No one cares. Oh, baby! These are heavy and stick that inner girl down, right! Let's explore this. It comes up a lot. Do people around you actually not care? (Try picking up their things and having them recycled on rubbish day... trust this gal... they care A LOT! And yes, I did that.) Look around you. Are you taking on ALL the housework when your kids and spouse (hey- they live there too!) could pull their own weight? Kids as young as 3 can start doing their own chores. It teaches responsibility, ownership, and respect.
Yes, I did actually get into the habit of telling my family to encourage them to pick up after themselves - If mamma has to pick it up, it's going to the garbage. And I had a habit of doing this the morning of rubbish day too. You want to see the kids have a fire lit under them? The sound of the bin mans truck coming through or me with a large garbage bag in my hand. They hopped too quick!
Back to our thoughts...
One of the other benefits of this notebook is to be able to go back and reflect after a few days. It's a great way to put yourself in check to see just where your mindset really is. Are you being a brat? Are you procrastinating something and putting those feelings out onto others? Are you stuck in a funk with a dark cloud over you? Go back and cross out all those negative words and thoughts and replace with a positive one and an action to help override them next time they pass through.