No, this is not an article about the 3 Dimensions or the 3-Ds of Diabetes – Drugs, Discipline, & Diet! Nor it’s about the 3Ds of geriatric psychiatry – Depression, Dementia & Delirium.
In this article, I’ll talk about some discoveries that have helped me cope with many situations and preserve my mental well-being at times, some practices that help me all the time, and I believe these will benefit the readers too as I share.
You may or may not know that MAY is the national mental health awareness month in the USA since 1949. But that’s not the concern. The issues regarding mental health go beyond the borders and affect the everyday life of every single one. So, it’s important to talk it out as much as possible and give in to the continuous process of being aware.
Now, let’s get straight to the point and shed light on the 3Ds!
The beneficial 3Ds for having a healthy mind and functioning well are Declutter, Disconnect, & Delete. Yes. And before I elaborate on the WHYs and HOWs, know that these are just small self-help tactics. In cases of extreme situations, you do need to seek professional help.
If you’ve read our An All-Inclusive Guide on How to Detox Your soul, then you already know the importance of taking the decluttering challenge. Clutter induces stress and anxiety. If you face trouble with your attention span, clutter can be one of the reasons. It distracts us and also handicaps our capacity to think clearly. Physical clutter consumes a lot of our time and energy, makes us feel distressed, instils unhealthy emotional attachments to belongings. On the other hand, information clutter gets us into a state of confusion, a condition when we don’t know what to do or when to start and which one to start with. It becomes just too much to take in. Decluttering not only saves us from it all but also recharges us.
Tidy up & Organise
If you’ve heard of Marie Kondo, then you surely know about her book “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up”. Tidying up your space and organising the things you own can restore your mental peace and remarkably increase your motivation to stay productive. While procrastinating on important academic or work-related activities, organise your workspace and the things in your study area, make your bed, tidy up the kitchen racks, organise your closet, and keep things at their exact locations. It will make you feel productive, and you won’t get distracted when you sit to work. Decluttering not only soothes the eyes but the mind as well.
Donate unnecessary things
Unnecessary things are all the things that no longer align with your purpose or serve your well-being. As you declutter and organise, you’ll find many such things that you want to get rid of. But don’t just throw them away; instead, donate them to people who need them. This will boost your spiritual well-being and instil a sense of goodwill.
Make To-do lists
To-do lists help us organize the tasks at hand and deal with information clutter. At present, we are living in a world that is fighting a pandemic. People are adapting to the new normal. And hence, distance learning (bombards us with multiple assignments) and working from home (doesn’t necessarily decrease the pressure). It’s very natural to feel confused, exhausted, and irritated. But remember, it’s always one deadline at a time. So instead of consuming all the information at once, slot them for each day of the week. Start with the project you need to finish at the earliest convenience. Scheduling sets you on a focus mode.
Write down your thoughts
Journaling feels like talking to ourselves or talking to a friend who understands us. It helps us make cloudy thoughts fade away. In other words, mental and emotional clutter is when we experience intrusive thoughts and emotional baggage. Writing them down keeps us from overthinking, and we get to challenge our thoughts better when we write. It’s a great way of taking care of negative emotions.
Choose minimalist lifestyle
Half of our problems disappear when we choose to indulge ourselves less with a superficial and materialistic lifestyle. A minimalist lifestyle is all about choosing to surround ourselves with things that add values to life. Restricting yourself from things and being happy about it. Buying new things only when you need, reusing things, and helping mother nature rejuvenate in the process. An easily sustainable life is definitely never going to feel taxing, mentally and emotionally.
What’s the first thing you do when you wake up? I bet it’s checking your social feeds, reading the notifications and messages. We live in a world where we wake up every day with messages from telecommunication and e-commerce brands, and before even reading them, we know what’s inside. We live in a world where people judge us based on our social profiles. It’s like we are not having a great time if we don’t post on social media. And since so much of our time gets consumed by multiple devices, comes to play the app algorithms and data mining which is very limiting and invasive at the same time. Wondering how to disconnect from things that don’t serve you and protect your energy?
Phones nowadays come with app locks and zen mode that restrict you from using those apps or your phone for a certain period of time. So, whenever you’re studying or are on a trip, use these so that you can be fully “Present” and not get distracted. Do not check your phone right after waking up. Start some other activity with a fresh mind and ground yourself first before consuming a lot of information. Crack the loop of app algorithms by reverse playing them. If the apps keep showing you things that you are not interested in, select the “hide from newsfeed/timeline” option, unfollow pages, report spam, and write more about things on the search bar that you want to see.
We experience growth when we are exposed to better information and ideas. Ideas change you; ideas change the world. And to disconnect yourself from old beliefs and ideas and grow as a person, you have to connect yourself with new ideas. How? READ MORE! Before blindly believing something, do your own research and analysis. This will give you a better perspective and keep you from drawing to a conclusion based on the little information you kept holding onto.
Disconnecting from activities does not only include stopping the harmful activities for yourself and others but also disconnecting from essential activities because your body and mind need rest. Go on a vacation, take a break from work, and spend time with your loved ones, play some music and dance in your room in between long study hours. The list is long! However, to disconnect yourself from bad habits, you have to discipline yourself.
Be it social media or real life, there are always some people who are just not right for our mental well-being. Sometimes even seeing their names incite negative emotions as it reminds us of the hurtful experiences. On social media platforms, it’s easier disconnecting from such people. Just tap on the snooze, mute, unfollow, unfriend, or maybe block them?
Sometimes, even if something unwanted is not in front of our eyes, it doesn’t help thinking about it. If you have seen the movie Jab We Met, then remember how disconnecting with her ex didn’t help Geet? She needed more to heal. And that’s why Aditya suggested burning the picture of her ex. It’s like deleting the existence of every little thing that lets the memories/thoughts intrude. (Lousy? Let me give another example). Days, years go by after your exams end and the slides, pictures of the notes stay somewhere on your device. Neither are those bothering you nor are you seeing them. But, whenever you delete them, you’ll instantly feel light. It also helps when it involves stuff that’s not in front of our eyes but the back of our minds. So look around and ask yourself what needs to be deleted from existence in your life.
Cheers to restoring POSITIVI-TEA!