If you guessed CLUTTER, you guessed right! Clutter not only sucks your attention and focus, it also drains your energy and feeds your stress.
When you hear about clutter, you may instantly think of its most common form: physical clutter. However, physical clutter is not the only kind of clutter experienced by the ADHD brain. There are 3 different types of clutter which often show up, preventing us to move forwards with our goals.
The first type of clutter, as mentioned above, is PHYSICAL CLUTTER. This type of clutter presents as having things out of place trending to accumulate and causing us to misplace important items and avoid entering those areas.
Tips to tackle Physical Clutter are:
1. Getting rid of what is not absolutely necessary. To figure our what you do not need any more you can ask yourself:
- How long has is been since I last used it?
- Do I have something similar that works better than this?
- How many of these items do I already have?
- Will I need this in the near future?
- Do I really need this?
Be truthful to yourself when answering these questions and that will help with your decision. If at the end you choose to keep an item, consider:
2. Creating a home for your item:
- Use clear plastic containers so you can easily see what is inside each one.
- Create labels for your containers so you can quickly locate them when needing to store items away and at the same time find those items you need to use.
3. Implementing the 2-minute rule:
- Put away or clean up anything which will take you 2-minutes or less to complete. Taking care of things right away will prevent them from pilling up and will ultimately save you time and energy.
The second type of clutter is MENTAL CLUTTER. The ADHD brain is constantly busy and thinking about many things at once. Many of these thoughts can become negative and continue to ruminate in our brains keeping us stuck.
Tips to tackle Mental Clutter are:
- Writing these thoughts or to-dos down before beginning to work on a project.
- Keeping a small notepad by your side to write down your ideas or obligations that might come up during a work session.
- Practicing mindfulness and guided imagery prior going to bed.
- Giving yourself time to pause and plan. Buffer space for creativity and positive thinking.
- Delegating and asking others for support.
The third type of clutter is DIGITAL CLUTTER. Having hundreds, sometimes thousands of emails in your mailbox; numerous texts, APPS and games in your phone; as well as multiple tabs and screens open at once in your computer, are all examples of Digital Clutter.
Tips to tackle Digital Clutter are:
- Scheduling a weekly day and time to declutter your computer. Erasing emails and unsubscribing from sites you are not finding helpful anymore.
- Erasing APPS and games that are consuming your time and attention.
- At the end of the day close all tabs in your computer so you can start your next session with a blank screen.
Remember that you can choose an action step everyday to move you towards a clutter free environment that will contribute to your productivity and emotional well-being.
Hope these tips were helpful!