Decluttering has become quite the discussed topic here on my blog but something that I don’t talk about as much is decluttering your mind. In my opinion, decluttering your mind and your mental space is just as important as decluttering the physical items in your life.
One of the best ways to declutter your mind is by doing a brain dump.
What is a brain dump?
In its simplest form, a brain dump is simply taking all the thoughts from your mind and writing them down. It’s a quick way to declutter your thoughts and help you focus on what’s important.
The purpose of a brain dump is to clean your mind and organise your thoughts. It’s like an organisation system for your brain.
How to brain dump?
Brain dumping shouldn’t be complicated. All you need is a pen and some paper. Personally, I like to do my brain dumps in a notebook but you could use any paper or even a scrap piece of paper from some junk mail. We all have enough of that.
Once you’ve grabbed your pen and paper then you’re ready to start. Just write down anything and everything that your brain can think of.
Your thoughts don’t have to make sense and they don’t have to look aesthetic either. If writing something down will help you declutter your mind then it doesn’t have to mean anything to anyone else.
Your brain dump may finish with a neat list of your tasks, or it might finish was a chaotic scribble of words and doodles. Your brain dump is for you and you only so it really doesn’t matter what you have written down or what it looks like. It might even look different every time you brain dump and that’s great. Our minds are always changing and our brain dumps should be too.
Brain dump prompts
But what if you sit down with your pen and paper but then your mind goes empty? Don’t worry, we have all been there.
Here are some prompts to help you get those thoughts onto paper.
- Have you been worried about anything?
- Is there a task you keep forgetting to do?
- How are you feeling at the moment?
- Do you have any events or plans?
- Are you making time for your hobbies?
- Is there something you’d like to learn?
- Have you checked in with your friends and family recently?
- How is your health?
- Do you need to arrange any appointments or meetings?
- What is annoying you recently?
- Any interesting dreams?
I’ve brain dumped. Now what?
Now that all your thoughts are on paper, it’s time to organise them. This can be as simple or creative as you’d like it to be.
Start by going through each thought and deciding what to do with it. If it’s a task, add it to your to-do list. If it’s an event, write it in your calendar. If it’s an emotion, make a little note for you to be aware of your feelings in future
Not everything on your brain dump will require you to do something. Sometimes you just had to get that thought out and now it’s done with.
The most important thing to remember is that there’s no right or wrong way to brain dump. Find a system that works for you.
I try to brain dump about once a week but this is something that you can figure out and make work for you and your lifestyle. Eventually, brain dumping becomes a habit and your mind feels much less cluttered.
Is brain dumping something you’d try? If you already brain dump, do you find that it helps you declutter your mind?