5 Effective Ways to Declutter Your (Multi-Passionate) Mind for Success
As a multi-passionate woman it took me years to figure out how to declutter my mind, and organize my many passions,...
As a multi-passionate woman it took me years to figure out how to declutter my mind, and organize my many passions, and interests in such a way that I could remain focused, and move forward with the projects I’d set out to work on.
More than once I started something, only to leave it unfinished or hanging somewhere, half baked. Very often the reason for this was my mind, going in a million different directions all at once, always wanting me to do so much at the same time.
Remaining focused on decluttering my mind has been one of the cornerstones of my success in recent years.
And when a client reached out for help last week, totally lost in her many dreams, ideas, and passions, without knowing what to focus on or where to get started, I reflected on what’s actually working for me, and what I’ve learned to do to keep myself out of multi-passionate mayhem, and in action-taking heaven.
Here’s a list of 5 effective ways I’ve distilled that help me to declutter your mind (almost) instantly, so that your (multi-passionate) self can benefit fully from having a creative, always on, and highly interested mind.
Pick something – anything
A few years back, if you’d asked me to pick one of my passions over any other, I would have been terrified. Of missing out, of not choosing the right thing, of regretting my choice later on.
We live in a world that has us thinking that choosing is losing, when in fact we can have it all. Really. Just not all right now. And because we can’t do everything at once anyway, picking something is not a loss at all. In fact, it’s the first step towards achieving anything…
The easiest way to do this is to pick anything. But of course, with many passions or dreams comes many options. And this is where a lot of us struggle, and procrastinate. I’ve learned to overcome this by feeling into my goals, or the passions that I have. It’s not as hard as it seems, and really helps when you’re trying to figure out what to get started on first.
Here’s a simple 3-step process:
- Write down everything you want to do
- From that list, circle the 3 things you feel most drawn to doing (or that you know you need to get started on!)
- For each of them, ask yourself how they make you feel
The one that gives you the most fuzzy, warm, or happy feelings is the one to get started on right now. That’s it.
Make a plan – then stick to it
Once you’ve picked something to get started on, there’s a second kind of chaos to overcome: the many creative ways at your disposal to turn your goal, idea, dream into a real thing. I speak from experience when I say this, believe me. Whether it’s a personal or a professional goal, I always seem to find a million ways to execute it.
A recurring theme with me is my interest in online marketing. I need to remind myself often to stick to a clear set of techniques, so as not to be drowning under the weight of wanting to try every new shiny marketing method I learn of. And the best way I have found to keep this urge at bay is by making a plan. Then sticking to it. Plans can be as simple or as complicated as you make them. I like mine to be complete, and include as much as possible from the onset about what it is I’ll do to achieve a particular goal.
This really helps me to keep my mind clutter-free, and to avoid distractions. Because whenever they show up, I refer to my plan. If the shiny distraction is not in it, I don’t allow it to get into my head either.
Be flexible – and eat many side dishes
The concept of a side dish comes from the godmother of multi-passionate women: Barbara Sher. In her book Wishcraft (available for free download here) she speaks of main passions or goals, and side dishes. The side dishes are the things you’d love to do or create, but that are not really essential to you. In order to keep my mind as free as possible, I’ve learned to treat almost everything as a side dish. This is in total opposition with before, when everything was equally important, and I had a hard time choosing! Again, the point here is: you don’t have to choose. But there’s a time, and a place for everything. So along the way of me working on my goals, that are firmly set through my plan, I allow myself some flexibility to also enjoy my side dishes.
One way that I’ve found extremely useful to do this is to have a clear separation between my work time – when I work on my goals of the year following my plan, and my down time – when I’m allowed to enjoy spending time on whatever it is that I want to do!
This way I have a lot of flexibility to integrate things that are not “part of my plan” into my day, without feeling guilty about it, or procrastinating on what really needs to be done! A few examples of my side dishes are: learning a new language, taking online courses on various topics that interest me, drawing, and so on.
This includes emerging passions too, as I’ll tell you more about below.
Save it for later – much later
My multi-passionate antennas are always working. I can’t help it. It’s part of the trait to need your daily dose of knowledge, inspiration, new learning. And that’s a great trait to have, don’t you think?
The problem is that your antennas can pick up too many things at the same time, making it really difficult for you to stay on track, follow your plan, focus on your main objectives. When there’s too much to look at, even the best of us eventually get distracted.
That’s why I keep a “save for later” list. A real life-saver (no pun intended)!
A save for later list has the same effect as a brain dump, an exercise where you write down everything that’s in your head down on paper: immediate release, and freed up mental space.
The difference between the save for later list, and the brain dump is that you do the former systematically rather than once in awhile. Whenever something new, and interesting pops into my mind, or crosses my path – which is at the most incredible times, believe me – instead of giving it attention that undoubtedly needs to go to what I’ve actually set out to achieve (duh!), I add it to my save for later list. Instant release! Out of my head, onto paper I know it’s not lost, and that I’ll be able to go back to it later. Best trick ever!
Check-in with yourself – often
Finally, as a multi-passionate women, I’ve learned to check in with myself – often. To see if my goals are still aligned with what I want, and how I feel. To see if I’m not done with something yet, and ready to let it go, even if the world tells me I’m not.
And this is really important.
Too often we think we need to keep up doing something because we said we would, or because everyone around us expects us to, while we’ve already gotten everything there was for us to get out of it.
When this happens, don’t be afraid. It’s OK – and important – to move on.
Now do tell me, how do you declutter your mind? How do you stay on track, and focused? Let me know below, I’d really love to know.
Hi, I’m Murielle. I created the online course Soulful Productivity™, a 6-week program to redefine productivity and help you get from overwhelm to flow, and I have a private coaching practice where I help ambitious, multi-passionate creatives and entrepreneurs start, grow & scale businesses, and create their freedom lifestyle. PS: I love Instagram. Let’s connect!