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THE DEFINITIVE BOOK FOR CLEANING UP "MENTAL CLUTTER" HOLDING YOU BACK!
on August 23, 2016
I have been a victim of "monkey mind" for as long as I can remember. Years ago, when I tried to get a better handle on the events that were controlling my life, I focused on the external forces that I was sure had everything to do with my success [and failure] in life. If I was happy, something made me happy. If I was sad or depressed, something else made that happen, too. In my quest to gain greater control of my own life I realized that the thoughts I was creating every moment had everything to do with the quality of life I would experience at any given moment. Getting to the point, "Declutter Your Mind" is a powerful book on gaining total control of your mind, environment and shaping the future as you want it to be and not just relying on life to happen as it should.
In their third book in this series, Steve [Scott] and Barrie [Davenport] have written a book that targets one of the most critical areas we all struggle with: a life full of clutter. As they point out from the intro, your thoughts create reality, from stress and productivity to feeding into emotions, we can control and direct our thoughts to work for us instead of against us.
The book kicks off with the 4 causes of mental clutter:
• The Paradox of Choice
• Too Much Stuff
• The Negativity Bias
The next section gives us four mental declutter habits that add serious weight to both physical and mental health. The first is "Focused Deep Breathing" where we learn the full value of focusing on deep breathing on a regular basis. The second is "Meditation" and the authors say "we suggest meditation as a tool to help you train your mind and control your thoughts." Steve and Barrie introduce the simple 11-step process to use for building the mediation habit. Next is the "Reframe All Negative Thoughts" habit. Here you will learn the "six strategies you can use throughout your day to break the pattern and begin taming your mind." Finally we have the "Teach Your Old Mind New Tricks" habit. Here we have four great strategies for gaining greater control of your thoughts instead of being a slave to them.
Honestly, I was sold on this book after the first chapter. The 4 Mental Habits are enough to add incredible value to your life. But there are three more sections that add more weight:
Part 2 is about "Decluttering Your Obligations" and determining the Core Values as, according to the authors, “one of the simplest ways to eliminate mental clutter and live a more fulfilling life is to define your values and guiding principles for your life." In this section we learn four awesome strategies for nailing your life values, clarifying priorities, Mindful Goal Setting with Quarterly Smart Goals, and Connecting Goals to Passions.
Part 3, Decluttering Your Relationships, is the section of this book I needed the most. Because relationships are largely responsible for driving many people into stressful fits of rage, from kids to parents to friends, you don't want to miss this part. Declutter Your Relationships introduces 4 Relationship Strategies guaranteed to improve, empower and strengthen your communication with people. On every level you can have relationships that function in a healthier way. Steve and Barrie show us that by being mindful of others, we develop deeper levels of empathy and emotional control.
Part 4 is about simplifying your surroundings. Where you spend the most time has a huge impact on your happiness and state of mind. This section has enough juice in it to make your living space a business powerhouse if you clean it up. As the authors state: "When your environment is cluttered, the visual chaos restricts your ability to focus."
This section will show you step-by-step how to
• clean up your home
• minimalize your digital life
• spend more quality time with friends and family
• learn to relax more and avoid a life a busy-ness all the time
• simplify your distractions to avoid procrastination
• simplify your daily actions
Declutter Your Mind has a strong focus on Mindfulness, and how we can tap into our greater selves to create a life of relaxation, peace, serenity and freedom. In a world of increasing complexities, schedules stacked up, and distractions controlling our lives, there has never been a better time than now to start "decluttering" your mind [and your life].
-- An added bonus to the book at the end are is a 400-word list of values so you can choose the values for evaluating your current quality of life.--
**So what's the final word on Declutter Your Mind?**
The book is, as expected, written in a way that readers can start implementing the strategies and habits right away. The language is concise and clear and, both authors, drawing from their extensive experience discussing self-improvement and habit strategies have provided us with a timeless book chock full of actionable content. This is a definite recommend for people looking to have a simplified and calmer lifestyle.