When we are stressed we are most likely to drop into a default mode of crowded thoughts and frantic rushing. We often let our thoughts and emotions dictate, without stopping to actually assess what’s helpful. The greatest present we can give this Christmas is being present to ourselves and present to others. So here’s how to clear your mental clutter and actualise your mental well-being.
Actualise – stop, assess and determine what’s needed.
The penultimate blog in this CHRISTMAS series by Val Mullally.
A is for Actualise
If you’re anything like me you may be asking, “But how do I actualise my mental well-being?”
So often my thoughts race away with me.
My mind chases everywhere but where I want to be – enjoying the moment.
How To Train Your Mind To Be In The Moment
Here’s the SPACE acronym – the declutter solution from the experts. We can adapt this to clear the stress and clutter from our minds:
Actualise (assign a home)
Let’s look at each of these:
How to Create Mental SPACE
Sort your thoughts. Not all thoughts are true. See “Stress Less this Chrismas – Thought Minding” for more on this. Some thoughts aren’t kind, or helpful. They erode our well-being.
If you’ve sorted your thoughts, you can purge those that aren’t helping you be the person you want to be. Is what I’m thinking true? Is it kind? Is it helpful? If you can’t say “Yes” to all three of those questions, purge the thought! Bin the thoughts that aren’t working for you. If you don’t entertain them they won’t hang around!
Be aware of what you actually choose. Either you are in control your thoughts or your thoughts are in control of you. Choose thoughts that help you be the person you want to be.
One way that our thoughts stress us is through seepage. We let work thoughts drip into our downtime. We let unhappy past memories pollute our present joy. We let future worries ooze into our time of relaxation. These thoughts clutter our minds and cause stress.
Some need purging.
Others need containerising.
Work thoughts need to be containerised for after the holiday. (If it’s important and you’re worried you’ll forget it, note it down, so that your brain knows you have created a reminder, and can let it go).
Haunting past memories and future worries can also be containerised. Maybe you recognise you need to do something about them. In your mind containerise them so you can return to them at a more desirable time.
Sad memories of the loss of a loved one may also seep into your Christmas. Hold your memories gently in the crucible of your mind. What is there to celebrate about this person’s life? What would they want to be telling you now? Rather than letting your grief ooze into the day and pollute the joy, hold your pain carefully in a container where it can over time be transformed into joy and wisdom.
Using SPACE to Sort, Purge, Actualise and Containerise our thoughts can help regain a calm equilibrium – to create balance in our lives.
Why Create Mental SPACE
Why would we take time to create mental SPACE when life is already so hectic?
It’s like clearing the kitchen clutter before you start the Christmas meal.
It’s easier to get done what needs to be done.
You can focus on what matters.
It avoids unnecessary upsets.
Things go more smoothly.
Things are more enjoyable.
Things usually turn out better.
When we create mental SPACE there is more room for joy.
It opens our minds to what’s needed now, in this moment. So use SPACE to actualise what’s needed and what matters.
So what might it take to actually have a more joyful Christmas?
Join me for the big “S” of Christmas in the next blog!
So it’s over to you:
What thoughts do you choose to Sort, Purge, Containerise and Actualise that will help you to Equalise this festive season?