This article was originally published on BLAC Detroit Magazine.

Let us all take a deep breath.


We made it to 2022; it’s such a blessing. The last two years have felt like a blur. There were so many things that happened to the world that were out of our control. The truth is, uncertainty within your life can cause stress, anxiety, and depression.

We often only talk about decluttering our home and workspace throughout the winter and spring, but let’s spend some time focusing on decluttering our minds. Here are 10 ways to declutter for positive, loving, and productive thoughts.

Set Priorities

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You move throughout life with purpose when you have something to look forward to. Be clear with what is important to you and what is not. Deciphering what’s essential helps you focus on positivity and what you have to look forward to.

Journal

From the time you wake up in the morning until the time you go to bed at night, your mind is clouded with various thoughts. Your journal is the one place where you can let those thoughts live instead of taking up space in your mind.

Let Go

Let go. Let go of the past, let go of your expectations, let go of your worries and just BE in the present. We get so caught up in the what-ifs that sometimes we lose sight of what IS.

Deep Breathe/Meditate

When was the last time you took a deep breath? Deep breathing helps you relax by slowing your heartbeat down if you feel anxious. It lowers the stress hormones in your brain and lowers the blood pressure in your body. When you can take deep breaths and quiet your mind, that’s when mediation begins.

Clean your workspace

A clean space allows for a pure mind. Your mind won’t be distracted when your workspace is organized, and everything is in its proper area.

Limit Screen Time/ Schedule screen time

We all know the world is slightly addicted to their phones, TVs, computers, tablets, anything with a screen. Children these days learn how to take a selfie before they can walk. Limit your screen time to give your eyes and brain a break. Give yourself a certain amount of screen time a day and see how you feel less overwhelmed and attached to your phone over time.

Stop Multitasking, focus on one thing at a time.

As much as we love to multitask, studies show that when you focus on one thing at a time, you are more productive and more likely to perform that task better.

Spend time in Nature

Spending time in nature grounds you. All puns intended. Seriously, when you are in nature, you are at the mercy of the elements. You are not in control, which is a freeing feeling. In essence, you are reminded that there’s more to life than the fleeting thoughts that live in your head. 

Rest/Sleep

REST! REST and SLEEP are essential to reduce stress, improve our immune system, improve our mood and metabolism. There’s a saying that “you can sleep when you’re dead.” I want that saying to die in 2022. As African American people, we have worked from the moment we got here. Over the years, we kept the go-go-go mentality, and it’s timeout for that.

Challenge Negativity

Make negative thoughts a thing of the past. Whenever negative thinking comes into your mind, redirect that feeling into something positive that you are looking forward to. It will take practice, but it will get easier and easier over time.

As we go into this new year, let’s remember: although the world around us may be out of our control, we can control ourselves; how we react, how we feel, and how we navigate through life.

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