7 Ways Toxic Mindset Is Keeping Your Room Messy
Perfectionistic thinking can get in the way of getting a hold of your clutter. When you give in to perfectionism, you are giving away your power of choice. It can stop you in your tracks before you even begin. For example, you might feel you can’t begin to declutter because it’s not the perfect time. Perhaps it’s that you can’t start to organize because you don’t have the perfect containers. Maybe it’s that you can’t put something away because you don’t have the perfect spot for it. Perfect is a mirage. You already know this. Progress is better than perfect. Imperfect is perfectly fine.
When you have a fixed mindset, you are giving away possibilities. A fixed mindset traps you into believing that nothing can change. That you are incapable of change or improvement. It’s always been this way so how could it ever be another way? But if you take the blinders off and choose a growth mindset, you will see there are other paths you can take. Like a river that flows, you can overcome obstacles. You’ve done it countless times.
Like most of us, you fall into the habit of thinking the same things over and over. Habitual thoughts precede habitual actions. Or, as is often the case, habitual inactions. Your thought habit is, “I’ll get to this later”. But later never comes. You can change habitual thoughts. It just takes practice. If you don’t have time to do it now, change your thought to I’ll put this on my schedule for this evening or tomorrow. Or, if it’s really not important, I give myself permission to not do it at all. By telling yourself you will put your task on your schedule, your mind will want you to follow through. You believe whatever your mind tells you.
Scarcity vs. Abundance
Scarcity mentality is all around us day and night. Ads on television with messages that we need product A or we are incomplete. You’ll miss out on this opportunity because it’s ending tomorrow. Then there’s the old “what if I need it? I should keep it.” fear. Having a scarcity mindset leading to too much stuff robs you from having an abundance of opportunities. Abundance of things is not as good as having an abundance of time to relax. Or an abundance of joy with friends and family who can come over and visit.
Coming from a place of fear
Similar to a scarcity mindset, without even realizing it, you could be allowing fear to stop you in your tracks when it comes to letting go of things. Do you find yourself holding on to something that someone gave you, yet you don’t use it or love it? But you don’t let it go for fear the person might come over and ask you, “Where is that thing I gave you?” You feel fear and guilt when you think about releasing this object.
Consider this. How many times have you gone to someone’s house and asked that person where is the vase or shirt I gave you? I’m guessing rarely, if ever. Would you want your friend or family member to feel fear and guilt? No (at least I hope not), and they would most likely not want that for you either. Expectations and assumptions can cause unnecessary fear. Allow yourself to release the fear along with the items you no longer use, need, or love.
Negative Self Talk
Have you ever heard the expression your brain believes whatever you tell it? It’s common in our society to put ourselves down and say negative things about ourselves. Negative self talk is a habit that must be broken to move forward in your organizing journey. If you are used to saying to yourself that you’re not an organized person, or you are bad at organizing, your brain will align accordingly.
Great athletes are trained in positive mindset and positive self-talk. This is a key to what makes them great. A top performing athlete tells themselves, “I’m great at this game! I’m the best! I’m always improving”. Do this for yourself as well. You are amazing, wonderful, and accomplished. You can do anything you set your mind to.
It might feel awkward to begin positive self-talk. Doing new things feels awkward sometimes. Begin to notice when you say something negative to yourself. Practice replacing negative thoughts with positive ones by rephrasing. When you catch yourself thinking, I’m never going to get this mess cleaned up! Change it to “It might take a while, but I can tackle this mess. Your brain will start to set your body into action of what you tell yourself.
Becoming overwhelmed with the decluttering and organizing process is common. One reason behind this is unrealistic expectations. We humans are famous for biting off more than we can chew. In general, we are terrible at estimating time or how long things take. So, this causes expectations to be out of sync with reality. You feel overwhelmed or that you’ve failed yet again. But that’s not the case. Check your expectations and see if you can bring them in line with your reality. Is the task too much for one person? Get some help. Will it take longer than you originally thought? Break down the project into smaller, more manageable tasks using a timer. Try the Pomodoro Technique.
The most important takeaway from this I want you to get is to keep going! It will take new thinking, new behaviors, new habits, and perseverance to accomplish your goals. Confucius said, “It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.”