Flourishing Fridays are about things to consider as you head into the weekend.
Creating mental and physical space
Today’s post is about decluttering.
Okay, before you think I have gone all Marie Condo on you, bear with me. Over the last couple of months, you have had control taken away across many areas of your life – how you work, play, exercise, travel, and so much more. This has created a range of emotions including anger, fear, frustration, anxiety, and for many people, mostly grief for the loss of control.
The activities that I have been sharing are designed for you to take intentional actions (i.e. be proactive) to give you control over the things you still have control over. Mindful Mondays are about you being more mindful about how you are living your life and being aware of emotions that overwhelm and you can potentially act mindlessly. Thriving Tuesdays are about small actions you can take to start to regain control. Wicked Wednesdays share examples of people and organisations who are solutions focused and positive, which can help you move into a positive upward spiral and look at the opportunities, rather than the challenges. Thankful Thursdays help you identify areas of your life that you are currently grateful for and may have previously been taking for granted. Flourishing Fridays are generally larger exercises and activities aimed at combining the intentions from Mondays to Thursdays.
When your behaviour is driven by emotions associated with uncertainty, it can be easier for your brain to prefer mindless activities, such as hours/days spent on the couch doing nothing but watching TV, scrolling through social media and going down rabbit holes, or comfort shopping on the net. These are all ways your anxious mind is driving your actions and behaviours. The daily posts have let you determine what activities resonate with you and have been willing to try. My suggestion last week to revisit the previous emails was for you to look at these activities in a new light, given that some of the emotions that have been overwhelming may have reduced. Coming up with a rough schedule of activities that were meaningful to you hopefully identified some extra time where unintentional or mindless activities may have taken over.
Many of you now have an extra 2 to 4 hours in your day that you did not previously have a few months ago. Depending on how you travelled to and from work and the activities you did before and after work and on weekends will impact how much extra time you have in your day. Some of this may have been consumed by home schooling, spending more time with the family and some intentional activities you have now incorporated into your life. However, to move from coping and surviving to flourishing and thriving, you need to create the mental and physical space to continue to develop, learn and grow. One of the easiest ways to do this is to de-clutter. This can be your wardrobe, emails, emotions and many other areas. My sole goal (and soul goal) in life is to make my life as simple as possible. By doing this, I make the space to do the things I want to be doing, rather than having to get through the clutter and noise first. So, here are some practical tips for you to consider and see what works for you:
- Start small – don’t see the area you have chosen to start on as a massive, all-encompassing task that has to be completed in one go
- Break it down – know what you want to achieve and come up with some logical steps to get you there (I do this in one hour blocks which are easy timeframes for me to commit to. Sometimes I keep going for longer, sometimes I’ve had enough)
- Celebrate each session’s achievement by reminding yourself of what you’ve achieved
- Practice self-compassion and give yourself a hug. Focus on what you did, rather than what you didn’t do
- Adjust the remaining steps accordingly