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How to declutter your mind when you’re feeling restless from thinking too much and you can’t seem to process everything in your head.
We all go through periods where we feel extremely busy or restless. You know, those times when there’s just so much to do and so much to keep track of and you’re convinced you’ll never be able to finish it all.
That feeling can be overwhelming and give you a mental fog.
To help give you clarity in spite of all of that, you can try a few practices to declutter your mind.
How to Declutter Your Mind
An important first step when you are feeling stressed out is to be a source of positivity for yourself. If you’re already feeling like you have too much to do and too little time to do it, feeling guilty about not getting it done (or done to your standards) will only make you feel worse.
Remind yourself that you are doing the best you can given the current situation and circumstances. You’re not superhuman. There’s only so much you can do, but you’re going to give it your best shot.
When you feel like you’re holding more than you can handle in your head, you need to help your brain release some of that pressure. You can do that with a brain dump.
First, get out something to write with. That can be a pen and paper, computer document, phone notes, or tablet note. Use whatever you find easiest to record a lot of words.
Then, write down your thoughts using the stream of consciousness method. This is where you write whatever comes to mind without thinking too much about it (try not to filter your thoughts), and you write as continuously as possible without breaking the flow.
This will help you purge your thoughts and put the spotlight on what you’re most anxious about.
When you feel overwhelmed you have a lot of worries. Those worries can give you a distance from what’s really going on. In order to bring you back to the present you can try mindfulness meditation.
There are plenty of free guided meditations to be found on YouTube or as podcasts that you can listen to.
Some basic mindfulness practices are to be more aware of your surroundings. In your space, you can look around you and pick a few things to focus on. Name them to yourself and identify some aspects about them such as color, function, design, feel, etc.
Mindfulness meditations like that can help you pull yourself out of the storm in your head, have a clearer mind, and see what’s really been stirring inside of you.
Mind mapping is a way to organize your thoughts around one problem or task. You essentially pick a focus or problem, then break down into many more thoughts or tasks.
You are creating something like a tree to visually represent your focus. The root is your focus, and all the branches are the separate tasks or thoughts that stem from that.
This is especially helpful when you have big tasks to achieve that are stressing you out, like a move.
Use your phone or online calendar to set alerts or reminders for events and tasks that are stressing you out.
Whenever another event comes up, be sure to add it to your calendar and be sure to turn on your notifications so you don’t have to stress about forgetting something important.
If you have a busy schedule or have a lot of events coming up, it can be hard to imagine juggling everything.
Being consistent about tracking everything in your calendar will give you a sense of stability during a hectic time.
It’s the oldest trick in the book but it is highly effective. When you feel like you just don’t have the energy to do any of the above practices, try making a simple to-do list.
You can create a huge one that has anything that comes to mind on it, or create a few that are organized by categories.
Of course, cross of tasks as you achieve them, but most importantly, add tasks as soon as they come to mind.
This way you won’t be keeping it all in your head anymore and you’ll know exactly where to go when the mental fog hits you.
How to Declutter Your Mind When You’re Overwhelmed
Try these practices when you are having brain fog and feel overwhelmed by everything you have to do. They can help you to feel more at ease, be able to focus again, and prioritize your tasks.