Are you suffering from an unfocused and foggy mind? If you’re wondering how to clear your mind to focus better on tasks, you’re in the right place.
While clearing your wardrobe is easy, how do you clear your mind? If you muse on life far away from all the stress or your mind can’t focus when Monday arrives, keep reading.
Your mind, like your body, needs healthy breaks. Even a simple activity like answering mail can become impossible if you can’t bring yourself to process the words you read.
Joseph Ferrari, a professor of psychology at DePaul University, describes this mental clutter as an overabundance of possessions, and it can prevent you from contentment. After all, who doesn’t want a mind that moves peacefully from one task to another with unshakeable focus?
Today, we’ll explore mindfulness tips as well as 10 ways to clear your mind.
What Is Mindfulness?
Practicing mindfulness involves a meditative method to focus your attention on the present moment. This allows you to put to rest any thoughts or worries about the future and the past.
Mindfulness meditation can help move your attention from the external world to the internal world of your feelings, senses, and thoughts, thus improving your quality of life and memory.
Benefits of mindful exercises:
- High-quality sleep
- Focused attention
- Effective problem solving
- Improved memory
1. Avoid Multitasking
A psychology study in 2015 explained how the brain achieves optimal inattention by switching the attention of your brain from multiple pathways to a single pathway.
This is also called a pattern of synchrony. When the prefrontal cortex is unable to properly filter information, it can lead to mental disorders.
To clear your head, you first need to stop getting distracted. Focusing on too many tasks at once can be very tiring for your brain and prevent it from working optimally while increasing the chance of errors.
To avoid multitasking, schedule your activities in a way that works compatibly with the natural hierarchies of brain function.
Make a list of the 5 most important things in your life, and keep it where you can see it. Now, anytime there’s a problem or you feel yourself stressing out, you can look at the list.
This list reminds you of the most important things, and every other stressor will seem insignificant in comparison. Putting your problems or everyday life into such a perspective can greatly reduce the intensity of your stress.
3. Write or Journal
Writing down your thoughts is a kind of brain dump exercise that will rid your mind of stress. Once written down, those thoughts will stop running through your mind so often.
4. Let Go of Regrets
The only way to stop regretting your past actions is to accept them. You made mistakes because you didn’t know better. Obsessing over the past over and over again does no good.
Instead, try to move on by taking responsibility for them, learning from them, and committing to do better in the future.
5. Breathing Exercises
If you start feeling like you’re developing unhelpful thoughts then take some quiet time off to do some breathing exercises. For optimal results, these exercises should be performed in a quiet space.
Try to understand the source of your thoughts and write down problems so you can tackle them later. This will give you a chance to put your problems into a separate space where you can work to get to the root of them.
Once you resolve a problem, you slowly regain confidence and a positive attitude to tackle any such problems in the future.
6. Declutter or Organize
Don’t procrastinate. Start checking things off your list. This, as Harvard Health says, applies to all areas of your life, be it work, family, or friends.
A negative conversation with a colleague, stressed relations, or delayed assignments create a sort of mental traffic. They occupy space in your mind that prevents you from relaxing. This is why most people complain of not being able to switch off from their work.
Not the kind of talking that increases your stress but the kind that lets you express your thoughts to another person in an honest manner.
Talking to someone you are comfortable opening up to has great health benefits. Bringing someone in to discuss your problems helps you see the problem from a different perspective.
It gives you a chance to put aside any judgments or biases you may have and tackle the problem with a focused, clear mind. It will also give you more confidence to deal with stressors.
8. Social Media
A big cause of stress in our daily lives is the unending connection we have with the rest of the world. Too much connection is just as bad as no connection at all.
If you’re curious how to clear your mind, put aside a few minutes every day to take some quiet time for yourself or set a time limit on your social media usage. This will allow you to be more intentional with social media and reduce your screen time.
According to Harvard Health, physical exercise helps your body release stress while also pumping you up with positive hormones that give you the energy to start tackling problems with a clear and optimistic mind.
Regular exercise offers a twofold benefit. A good run, aerobic exercise, or a gym workout will get your heart rate cranking while also helping you shed accumulated stress. Better yet, if you can exercise outdoors, you’ll also benefit from better sleep.
10. Live in the Moment
Zen practitioners try to keep their presence of mind through meditation. It may be the simplest way to minimize your stress. Give the present moment your full attention.
Look at the surroundings, nearby people, or anything you can observe. Ask questions that bring your attention to the present:
- How is the weather?
- How does the food taste?
- How are you feeling?
- What is influencing your mood?
- Do you feel positive or negative?
- Can you leave if you need?
Don’t let the unwanted memories take over your moment of living in the present. The best practice, as per Harvard Health, in a busy regular routine can be taking time to practice mindful eating every day.
Other ways to clear your mind include;
Deep Breathing Exercises
This is a meditation practice that focuses on the breath and the present environment, helping you reduce the overwhelming traffic of thoughts in your brain.
The body scan method involves bringing your attention to different parts of your body and observing your bodily sensations. While you relax your body with deep breathing, notice any physical stress or chronic stress or any chronic pain you may be feeling.
Mental stress is known to create physical strain on your body. For example, your shoulders, jaw, or back muscles often become stiff from carrying all the stress.
This method visually motivates your mind to unwind. Long-term memory or traumatic experiences often get stuck in the mind and body through neural activity of thought processing, sensory functions, heart rate, eye movement, motor function, and reflexes.
This process works to access unwanted or traumatic memories within your mind to identify and address pain or stress. To engage in guided imagery, find a quiet space and bring your conscious attention to an uplifting memory.
These are exercises that allow you to establish control over your day. Priming exercises help you develop positive psychology towards how you approach different actions and perceptions of pain. It helps you respond in a more resourceful manner to adverse situations.
These methods help destress and relax your unfocused or cluttered mind. These exercises can be performed on your own or with the help of a practitioner.
How Long Does It Take to Declutter Your Mind?
Based on the kind of mental reset you need, you may need a day or just a few minutes to declutter your mind.
Some methods yield quick results. For example, pressing on the middle finger with your thumb and index finger brings instant relaxation by improving blood circulation. Such acupressure points also work well to calm an erratic heart rate.
There are other methods for people who have unwanted memories that they wish to bury with time, but these may require more time and professional help.
Final Thoughts on How to Clear Your Mind
There are many simple activities that can reduce stress every day, such as drinking plenty of water, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or having a mindful lunch.
But on those days when you find your brain churning to no end, hopefully these mindfulness tips will come to your aid. These activities are meant to get you started on small but tangible tasks that help you learn how to clear your mind of stress.