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5 Ways Decluttering Your Circle of Friends Can Save Your Energy and Peace of Mind

5 Ways Decluttering Your Circle of Friends Can Save Your Energy and Peace of Mind

Most people wrongly assume that we need more of some things in life in order to be happy, to find meaning and to get rid of stress and anxiety

It’s just the opposite. We need to choose less over more to save ourselves from unwanted worries, from living a complicated lifestyle and from having too many thoughts and too much tension in our mind.

When you’ve had enough of everything, and feel like you need more time for yourself, more freedom and peace of mind and more energy and focus to work on the things that matter to you, it’s time to start decluttering.

You’ll hear a lot of tips on how to get rid of unnecessary possessions at home, how to clear your mind and let go of regrets from the past, too many plans and random thoughts. There’s also a lot said about how to declutter your desk, computer and closet. You can also easily eliminate a lot from your calendar and daily to-do list to free some more time and stop doing unproductive activities.

But there’s one area of life that also needs decluttering, but which gets forgotten: your circle of friends.

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Let’s see why it’s smarter to have less friends in your surroundings and how this can significantly increase your level of happiness and make you more energetic and calmer:

1. You waste a lot of energy dealing with toxic people.

Toxic people are those individuals who are negative, around which you feel pressure and anxiety, who think only about themselves and require a lot of attention.

You can always argue with them but they’ll still want to be right every time. They don’t make compromises, may often upset you and make you feel inferior to them.

As a result, you feel miserable around them and it’s like they’re stealing your soul and draining your energy.

Life would be much easier if you simply stop communicating with them. If the connections were stronger you owe them a honest explanation. It’s normal that sometimes people grow apart. Even if it’s people you’ve been with your whole life, you don’t owe them your never ending connection. It’s your job to keep your happiness and peace of mind and live simply, so don’t feel bad about telling them all that to their face and removing them from your life once and for all.

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2. You’ll have more time for yourself.

In order to live a meaningful life, you should strengthen your relationship with yourself. One of the best solutions to filling the void you feel inside, to forgiving yourself, staying mindful, healing your inner self and embracing self-love, is to spend more time alone and reflect.

Having too many friends, some of which negative or playing the role of a victim, requires a lot of your time, attention and energy.

But without all that, you can have some me time daily. Imagine creating pleasant rituals to start and end the day with creative, positive and inspiring activities.

You can start meditating, working out, reading great books and getting motivated and learning new things, journaling your thoughts, visualizing yourself being more confident and successful, drinking tea and enjoying the silence, working on a creative project, or taking a walk and spending time in nature.

You’ll begin to feel more comfortable in your own skin, to get clear about your issues and about the things you truly desire in life. You’ll find out you’re worthy of love and won’t let others put you down anymore.

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You’ll be feeling fresh, energized and completely present.

Often, having many friends results in finding no time for yourself and being overwhelmed with other people’s problems. But once you declutter this area of your life, you’ll find balance and peace of mind.

3. Being constantly criticized is exhausting.

Others are judging you all the time, whether you like it or not.

And even if you’ve worked hard on trying to deal with this, it still affects your performance and way of thinking. At some point, you may end up living by someone else’s standards, seeking their approval, answering their expectations. But then you’ll be miserable because it won’t be what you want to do with your life.

Make sure you don’t end up like that, by eliminating all the people in your life who don’t support you, who don’t accept you for who you are, who aren’t there when you need them, and who even try to talk you out of your dreams.

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4. You’ll reach your goals sooner.

Some of the people in your surroundings are preventing you from moving forward. They are a distraction on your way to success.

You don’t need them in your life. Once you start avoiding them, you’ll begin feeling complete, you will find your way back to your own path, and will get closer to your goals by taking focused action every day.

5. You’ll dedicate more time to the people who matter.

Only a few of your friends are really worth it and deserve your precious time and energy. Chatting with doznes of newly met people may be exciting but long-term can drain your from energy.

Once you get rid of the connections which don’t nourish you, you’ll have the chance to be with them more often and deepen your relationship even more. But at the same time, you’ll still spend enough time on your own so that you aren’t stressed out or emotionally exhausted.

Now it’s your turn. Take a closer look at your circle of friends. Try to see people for who they really are, remember how they’ve treated you in difficult situations, analyze their reactions to different things from daily life.

If you’re honest with yourself, you’ll think of many who are actually toxic and aren’t a good fit for the lifestyle you want to create for yourself.

Don’t overthink it too much, be strong and direct and let them know you’re moving on.

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Last Updated on February 21, 2019

How to Improve Your Memory: 7 Natural (And Highly Effective) Ways

How to Improve Your Memory: 7 Natural (And Highly Effective) Ways

How is your memory? Is your cognitive function as strong as you’d like it to be?

If not, then you’re definitely going to be interested in the memory improvement tips I’ll be sharing with you in this article.

Despite what you might think – or have been told – improving your ability to recall information is certainly possible. You just need to know the right ways to do it. (Don’t worry, as you won’t need to make any significant lifestyle changes.)

So how to improve memory? Let’s dive straight into the first of seven easy ways to improve your memory significantly.

1. Meditate

We live in a world of non-stop, 24/7 information. It’s like a waterfall that’s endlessly pouring news, data, facts and figures into our conscious minds.

Unfortunately, our brains are not designed to absorb this tremendous amount of information. It’s no wonder then, that most people struggle to remember information and recall things.

Even if you believe you have a good memory and are comfortable with multi-tasking, you’ll also be aware that there’s only so much information your brain can process at one time. And research suggests that the more information and distractions, the harder it is for you to transfer information to your long-term memory.[1]

Fortunately, meditation can help you out.

Even if you just meditate for 10 minutes per day, you’ll boost your ability to focus, which in turn, will make it easier for you to remember important facts.

If you need help in shifting into a meditative state, I recommend trying an app like Headspace – which can assist you to achieve this in a convenient and structured way.

And don’t forget, meditation doesn’t just have to be closing your eyes and sitting in a lotus position. Some people prefer to simply take a short walk in nature. This clears and calms their mind, and still provides the all-important boost to their focus.

2. Get plenty of sleep

If you’re sleep deprived or have not been sleeping well, then I’m guessing you’re not remembering well either. This is because sleep and memory are intimately connected.

If you have a busy life and regularly find yourself not getting enough sleep, then this will negatively impact your cognitive abilities – including your memory.

How much sleep should you be getting?

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Well, according to the National Sleep Foundation, you need a minimum of seven to nine hours of sleep per night. If you get this amount of sleep regularly, then within just a few days, you’ll see a tangible improvement to your ability to remember and recall things.

Now, I’ll be honest with you, maintaining a proper sleep cycle is not always easy (especially when the latest Netflix series has just been released!). But if you care about improving your short-term and long-term ability to remember things, then it’s critical that you try to get at least the recommended amount of sleep every night.

Are there ways to hack the sleep cycle?

Yes, there are.

Try these three things:

  • Have a fixed bedtime (preferably before 10pm)
  • Don’t eat too late
  • Make sure your bedroom is as dark as possible

Sleeping is a precious activity. It regenerates your body, clears your mind, and helps with the storing and retrieval of information.

However, don’t sleep just yet, as I want to tell you about another great way to increase memory…

3. Challenge your brain

When was the last time you challenged your brain?

I don’t mean challenged in the sense of overeating or undersleeping. I’m referring to stretching your mental capabilities through things like crossword puzzles, Sudoku and memory games.

To expand your memory bank, and to make your recall razor-sharp, you need to continually challenge your brain.

Feedback from Lifehack readers such as yourself, has suggested that brain training apps are a super-effective way of doing this. Used regularly, these apps can enhance your focus, attention span, problem-thinking ability and memory.

There are hundreds of these apps available (most of them for free), but I recommend starting out with one of the big three:

  • Peak (Android/iOS, free, 10 million+ downloads)
  • Lumosity (Android/iOS, free, 10 million+ downloads)
  • Elevate (Android/iOS, free, 5 million+ downloads)

If you normally spend a chunk of your week playing computer games, then instead of shooting and killing your enemies, why not let some of them live – while you put your attention into boosting your brain power!

Challenging your brain will strengthen your neural pathways and enhance your mental abilities. But don’t just take my word for it, try one of the apps above and see the positive benefits for yourself.

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4. Take more breaks

When I think back to my days as a budding entrepreneur, I distinctively remember working all the hours under the sun – and many under the moon too!

At that time, I believed that breaks were for the weak, and to become wealthy and successful, I needed to shed blood, sweat and tears.

However, I was wrong.

Taking regular breaks is the best way to keep yourself productive, creative and alive to opportunities. It’s also the best way to learn new information.

Let me explain.

Typically, when studying lots of new information, most people will spend hours reading it – in an attempt to learn and remember the content as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, they’ve overlooked something.

Namely, extended study sessions are rarely a good thing, as your ability to retain information naturally declines after a certain period of time.

It’s similar to physical exercise. You wouldn’t attempt to train vigorously for four hours in a row. Instead, you’d take regular breaks to give your lungs, heart and muscles adequate time to recover. Failing to do this will result in muscle cramps and overexertion.

It’s the same with your brain. If you overload it with information, you’ll suffer from mental fatigue.

What’s the answer?

Make sure you take regular breaks when learning new information. I recommend at least a 10-minute break every hour. (You may also want to take a look at the Pomodoro Method.)

If you don’t want to be as regimented as that, then take breaks as soon as you find yourself losing the ability to focus on the new material. Your brain will thank you – and your learning aptitude will move up a level.

5. Learn a new skill

I love this quote, as it’s 100% true – but frequently overlooked:

“Learning never exhausts the mind.” – Leonardo da Vinci

From my experience of helping to develop the careers of dozens of Lifehack employees, I can definitively say that participating in meaningful and purposeful activities stimulates the mind. It also reduces stress and enhances health and well-being.

Let me give you an example of this:

Imagine you work for a global financial institution in one of their call centers. You take over 100 calls a day – many of them complaints. When you started the job a few months back, you were excited to be in full-time employment and working for a household name.

Unfortunately, your initial enthusiasm quickly turned into frustration.

The endless complaint calls began to take their toll on you. And the supervisors irritated you too, as they were far too interested in micro-managing you – rather than letting you work in your own way.

Now, in the story above, the ending could be that you put up with a job you didn’t like, and led a dull and frustrated working life for years and years. However, an alternative ending is this: you channeled your dissatisfaction in to learning a new skill (computer coding). It took you a year or two to get up to speed, but it allowed you to successfully upgrade your career – and the ongoing learning made the call centre job much more bearable.

Clearly, learning new skills gives you impetus, focus and something to aim for. Your brain loves to learn, and you should tap into this by always seeking our new information. And when learning becomes a habit, you’ll find your ability to remember and recall things effortlessly, becomes a habit too.

6. Start working out

If you’re not already working out regularly, then here’s another reason to do so:

Exercising for 20-30 minutes three times a week will improve your long-term memory.

Regular exercise increases blood flow in your body and supplies the brain with extra oxygen and nutrients. And a well-nourished brain is a well-functioning brain!

“But I just don’t have the time?,” I hear you say.

Not a problem.

A research has shown that a daily burst of 60 seconds of high-intensity exercise, offered many of the benefits of the longer exercise routines.[2] So, if you’re short on time – now you know what to do.

Interested in getting started?

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Here are five different ways that will help you work out:

  • Join a gym
  • Join a sports team
  • Buy a bike
  • Take up hiking
  • Dance to your favorite music

7. Eat healthier foods

I’m sure you’ve heard the expression: “You are what you eat.”

This applies to your brain too.

The food that you eat helps determine your brain’s capacity to store and recall information. A poor diet (think junk food + soda!) harms not just your physical health, but your mental health too.

Fortunately, there are several foods that are especially good for your brain and your memory. These include: blueberries, celery and dark chocolate. But anything high in antioxidants will have a positive effect on your brain and memory.

Conversely, highly-processed foods and those loaded with sugar will have a negative impact on your memory. This is due to them providing insufficient nutrients for your brain – leading you to easily suffer from mental fatigue.

Want to be mentally healthy? Then eat and drink an abundance of these for brain health:

  • Turmeric – helps new brain cells grown
  • Broccoli – protects the brain against damage
  • Nuts – improves memory
  • Green tea – enhances brain performance, memory and focus[3]
  • Fish oilfish oil supplements can increase your brain power

Here’re more brain food options that improve memory!

Final thoughts

I sincerely hope these seven memory boosting ways that I’ve covered in this article will be of help to you.

You don’t need to implement them all. I suggest just trying the ones that appeal to you.

But, if you’re serious about dramatically improving your memory, then make a start right now on adopting one or more of the ways I’ve suggested. I’m confident you won’t regret it.

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Featured photo credit: Eric Ward via unsplash.com

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