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9 Things To Declutter From Your Life To Be Much Happier

9 Things To Declutter From Your Life To Be Much Happier

Throughout life, just as we collect items, we collect thoughts. Every now and then it’s necessary to clean your home and refresh your mind to lighten the load of what’s been collected. If you feel that you have to declutter many physical possessions, first think about why that is. Know that decluttering isn’t simply organizing your things. It’s determining what is essential and what it adds to your life. You’ll be surprised how minimizing your possessions causes you to re-evaluate your life. Decluttering forces you to make certain decisions like using or losing your hobby materials sitting around the house. You may be surprised how much happier you’ll be after you completely declutter your life.

1. Cotton clutter

Does consumer culture have you buying more clothes for a rush of dopamines? In other words, are you excited by the idea of having more clothes or the experiences you’ll have in them? You may be long overdue to downsize your closet if you’re doing laundry quite a bit.

You’ve likely heard it before; if you haven’t worn it in a year or more, it’s time to go. If you’re the type of person that attaches sentimental value to everything you may have trouble with this. Have depth to your sentimental attachment and keep the things that deeply matter to you, like your wedding dress, graduation attire, vacation memento, etc.

2. People who don’t align with where you want to be

You know who they are. They do not add any value to your life by showing you what they ate for dinner. Those who don’t align with your future-self fall into two categories; you know them intimately or not much at all. They’re the people who you may not know so well on Facebook and Instagram. It may seem harmless to browse down their timeline, but those moments you’re spending could be spent making a real connection.

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Use the social networks for their highest good by communicating and creating content for people who are important in your life. It can be difficult to remove people from your life that are closer to you. Look at the top five people you surround yourself with and honestly ask yourself if any of them are where you want to be in 20 years.

3. No more junk drawers, closets, and rooms

Decluttering your life benefits you physically, emotionally, and mentally. You can get the mental and emotional benefits by improving your environment first. Eliminate all “junk” areas from your home.

No more junk drawers filled with random items allowed. This is a form of physical clutter which has its equivalent in your mind. Some people have closets or entire rooms written off as “storage”, but you know what it really is.

4. Unhealthy snack options

You may not think of a snack as clutter. Your body takes what you consume and uses it to form everything that you are. Junk food in your kitchen eventually becomes clutter in your body. Your body has to work to process out any preservatives and chemicals you eat.

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The more unhealthy snacks you easily let slip in between meals and activities, the less healthy you are. Poor health can make your mind foggy, physically drain you, and even affects your attitude. Put healthy snacks in your kitchen, you’ll eat them simply because they’re there.

5. Unfinished business

When you leave loose ends, you have to remember to go tie them back together. Having to remember unfinished business is a drain on your mental energy. You may even feel some level of guilt for not completing a project, not making a call or not giving your best.

These thoughts are mental blocks that you should live without. If you let too many things go unfinished they might make you feel guilty, ashamed or reluctant to take action again. So, even if you think you’re behind in the race, finish. Give yourself the warm satisfaction of knowing you did what was right. Whether it is scheduling a meeting or launching a project, tie your loose ends.

6. Commitments that don’t serve you

Does paying for a monthly makeup or outdoor gear subscription box for the next 6 months really serve you? Of course, you want to have the highest quality of life possible. Should you collect more things or should the funds for the subscription box be used towards a more worthy cause? This is a commitment you made that may no longer serve your best interest or your wallet.

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Especially if you already have mounds of whatever the subscription box offers. You may end up with a lot of excess products getting automatic shipments every month. Say “No” more often, so you can spend time and money on the things that are truly important to you. Your true friends will still love you if you pass on Thirsty Thursday at the bar. What can you cut down time doing to get more time to work on goals or practice your craft?

7. Worries clouding your mind

Declutter your mind from incessant thinking. It may seem normal to want to think all of the time. Yet, many people who still their mind through meditation or yoga find it easier to direct thought because of the practice. You can’t expect yourself to be able to devote undivided focus to something when you can’t quiet your own thoughts.

Letting your thoughts run rampant really prevents you from giving 100% of yourself to whatever you’re doing. Your mind is designed to constantly look for potential dangers and you have to consciously quiet that. It serves you better to have a seat with your eyes closed and view the blank screen of your mind.

8. All of the paper you don’t need

Are you guilty of having a drawer full of papers? Go digital where you can. Paperwork adds up over time, leading you to have cluttered areas in your home, which you swear have important documents.

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Loose paper around your home breeds more of the same, leading to stacks of paper that only get thicker. Having a digital copy of important documents and even instruction manuals can help alleviate some of your worries about losing the hard copy.

9. Tell it like it is- it’s trash

Yes. Sometimes decluttering consists of getting rid of trash and dusty old items. Have you ever noticed how trash seems to collect in piles? You need to actively work to keep trash down to a minimum or you’ll attract more trash. You may not call all of the trash in your home, car or office trash. You may tell yourself, “I might need that one day”.

Tell that pair of underwear that has seen better times goodbye. If you have items you have never used for more than six months, get rid of it. If you can live without it for that long, it’s trash to you and someone else can enjoyably use it. Consider how much you really care about anything that’s been dusty and in your garage for more than six months.

Decluttering your life is so much more than organizing what’s under your bed into bins. You have to get rid of unneeded clothes, people, worrisome thoughts, unhealthy food, and trash. Decluttering negativity from your life on so many levels is going to have a deep and beneficial impact on your life. You’ll notice the difference. Get ready to walk lighter, feel free, and think more positive thoughts about yourself and the people around you.

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Last Updated on March 30, 2020

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

Have you ever walked into a room and felt like your nerves simply couldn’t handle it? Your heart beats fast, you start to sweat, and you feel like all eyes are on you (even if they’re really not). This is just one of the many ways that being self-conscious can rear its ugly head.

You may not even realize you’re self-conscious, and you may be wondering, “What does self-conscious mean?” That’s a good place to start.

This article will define self-consciousness, show how practically everyone has faced it at one point or another, and give you tips to avoid it.

What Does Self-Conscious Mean?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, self-conscious is defined as “conscious of one’s own acts or states as belonging to or originating in oneself.”[1]

Not so bad, right? There’s another definition, though — one that speaks more to what you’re going through: “feeling uncomfortably conscious of oneself as an object of the observation of others.” For those of us who regularly deal with extreme self-consciousness, that second definition sounds about right.

There are many different ways self-consciousness can spring up. You may feel self-conscious around people you know, like your family members or closest friends. You may feel self-conscious at work, even though you spend hours every week around your co-workers. Or you may feel self-conscious when out in public and surrounded by strangers. However, you probably don’t feel self-conscious when you’re home alone.

How to Stop Being Too Self-Conscious

When you’re in the throes of self-consciousness, it’s nearly impossible to remember how to stop feeling that way. That’s why it’s so important to prepare ahead of time, when you’re feeling ready to tackle the problem instead of succumbing to it.

Here are a variety of ways to feel better about yourself and stop thinking about how others see you.

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1. Ask Yourself, “So What?”

One way to banish negative, self-conscious thoughts is to do just that: banish them.

The next time you walk into a room and feel your face getting red, think to yourself, “So what?” How much does it really matter if people don’t like how you look or act? What’s the worst that could happen?

Most of the time, you’ll find that you don’t have a good answer to this question. Then, you can immediately start assigning such thoughts less importance. With self-awareness, you can acknowledge that your negative thoughts are present and realize that you don’t agree with them.[2] They’re just thoughts, after all.

2. Be Honest

A lie that self-consciousness might tell is that there’s one way to act or feel. Honestly, though, everyone else is just figuring life out as well. There isn’t a preferred way to show up to an event, gathering, or public place. What you can do is be honest with your feelings and thoughts.[3]

If you feel offended by something someone says, you don’t have to smile to be polite or laugh to fit in with the crowd. Instead, you can politely say why you disagree or excuse yourself and find a group of people who you relate to better. If you’re nervous, don’t overcompensate by trying to look relaxed and casual — it’ll be obvious you’re putting on a front. Instead, nothing is more endearing than saying, “I’m a little nervous!” to a room of people who probably feel the exact same way.

On the same note, if you don’t understand why someone wants you to do something, question it. You can do this at work, at home, or even with people you don’t know well. Nobody should force you to do something you don’t want to do.

Also, even if you’re willing to do what’s asked of you, there’s nothing wrong with asking for more clarification. People will realize that you’re not a person to be bossed around.

3. Understand Why You’re Struggling at Work

Being self-conscious at work can get in the way of your daily responsibilities, your relationships with co-workers, and even your career as a whole. If you’re facing some sort of conflict but you’re too nervous to speak up, you may be at the whim of what happens to you instead of taking some control.

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If you’re usually confident at work, you may be wondering where this new self-consciousness is coming from. It’s possible that you’re dealing with burnout.[4] Common signs are anxiety, fatigue and distraction, all of which can leave you feeling under-confident.

4. Succeed at Something

When you create success in your life, it’s easier to feel confident[5] and less self-conscious. If you feel self-conscious at work, finish the project that’s been looming over your head. If you feel self-conscious in the gym, complete an advanced workout class.

Exposing yourself to what you’re scared of and then succeeding at it in some way (even just by finishing it) can do wonders for your self-esteem. The more confidence you build, the more likely you are to have more success in the future, which will create a cycle of confidence-building.

5. Treat All of You — Not Just Your Self-Consciousness

Trying to solve your self-consciousness alone may not treat the root of the problem. Instead, take a well-rounded approach to lower your self-consciousness and build confidence in areas where you may struggle.

Even professional counselors are embracing this holistic type of treatment[6] because they feel that the health of the mind and body are inextricably linked. This approach combines physical, spiritual, and psychological components. Common activities and treatments include meditation, yoga, massage, and healthy changes to diet and exercise.

If much of this is new to you, it will pay to give it a try. You never know how it will impact you.

If you’re feeling self-conscious about how your body looks, a massage that makes you feel great could boost your confidence. If you try a new workout, you could have something exciting to talk about the next time you’re in a group setting.

Putting yourself in a new situation and learning that you can get through it with grace can give you the confidence to get through all sorts of events and nerve-wracking moments.

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6. Make the Changes That Are Within Your Control

Let’s say you walk into a room and you’re self-conscious about how you look. However, you may have put a lot of time and effort into your outfit. Even though it may stand out, this is how you have chosen to express yourself.

You have to work on your internal confidence, not your external appearance. There’s nothing to change other than your outlook.

On the other hand, maybe there’s something that you don’t like about yourself that you can change. For example, maybe you hate how a birthmark on your face looks or have varicose veins that you think are unsightly. If you can do something about these things, do it! There’s nothing wrong with changing your appearance (or skills, education, etc.) if it’s going to make you more confident.

You don’t have to accept your current situation for acceptance’s sake. There’s no award for putting up with something you hate. Confidence is also required to make changes that are scary, even if they’re for the better. Plus, it may be an easier fix than you thought. For example, treating varicose veins doesn’t have to involve surgery — sometimes simple compression stockings will take care of the problem.[7]

7. Realize That Everyone Has Awkward Moments

Everyone has said something awkward to someone else and lived to tell the tale. We’ve all forgotten somebody’s name or said, “You too!” when the concession stand girl says to enjoy our movie. Not only are these things uber-common, but they’re not nearly as embarrassing as you feel they are.

Think about how you react when someone else does something awkward. Do you think, “Wow, that person’s such a loser!” or do you think, “What a relief, I’m not the only one who does that.” Chances are good that’s the same reaction others have to you when you stumble.

Remember, self-consciousness is a state of mind that you have control over. You don’t have to feel this way. Do what you need to in order to build your confidence, put your self-consciousness in perspective, and start exercising your “I feel awesome about myself” muscle. It’ll get easier with time.

When Is Being Self-Conscious a Good Thing?

Self-consciousness can sometimes be a good thing[8], but you have to take the awkwardness and nerves out of it.

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In this case, “self-aware” is a much better term. Knowing how you come off to people is an excellent trait; you’ll be able to read a room and understand how what you do and say affects others. These are fantastic skills for people work and personal relationships.

Self-awareness helps you dress appropriately for the occasion, tells you that you’re talking too loud or not loud enough, and guides a conversation so you don’t offend or bore anyone.

It’s not about being someone you’re not — that can actually have adverse effects, just like self-consciousness. Instead, it’s about turning up certain aspects of yourself to perform well in the situation.

Final Thoughts

When you’re self-conscious, you’re constantly battling with yourself in an effort to control how other people view you. You try to change yourself to suit what you think other people want to see.

The truth, though, is that you can’t actually control how other people view you — and you may not even be correct about how they view you in the first place.

Being confident doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it happens in small steps as you slowly build your confidence and say “no” to your self-consciousness. It also requires accepting that you’re going to feel self-conscious sometimes, and that’s okay.

Sometimes worrying that there is a problem can be more stressful than the problem itself. Feeling bad for feeling self-conscious can be more troublesome than simply feeling it and getting on with the day.

Forgive yourself for being human and make the small changes that will lead to better confidence in the future.

More Tips for Improving Your Self-Esteem

Featured photo credit: Cata via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Merriam-Webster: Self-conscious
[2] Bustle: 7 Tips On How To Stop Feeling Self-Conscious
[3] Marc and Angel: 10 Things to Remember When You Feel Unsure of Yourself
[4] Bostitch: How to Protect Small Businesses From Burnout
[5] Psychology Today: Self-conscious? Get Over It
[6] Wake Forest University: Embracing Holistic Medicine
[7] Center for Vein Restoration: What Causes Venous Ulcers, and How Are They Treated?
[8] Scientific American: The Pros and Cons of Being Self-Aware

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