Chapter 1, part 2: Declutter Your Mind from A Book in Time

Published on 2 September 2022 at 12:49

According to Tiffany:

Author Tiffany asks, "Why do we think so negatively?" For some people, it is a way of life. Worry and stress about things out of your control, fear of the future, take on too much, or fear of what could happen. You need to change your perspective. You can only control right here at this moment. For anxiety in the present moment, Tiffany says, "Go with the flow is the best option for overcoming these patterns." Regarding regret of past mistakes, learn from them and let them grow you. The best way to combat negative thinking is to understand it to its core. You can learn what triggers the negative thoughts leading to mental clutter.


Tiffany identifies eight negative thought patterns:

1.  Catastrophizing:  predicting what will happen, then obsessing over how it could go completely out of control

2.  Avoiding/minimizing:  downplaying an event so you don't have to face it

3.  I should have/should not have:  negative thinkers make excuses for why they cannot do something rather than why they can

4. Irrational decision-making:  acting on impulse because of how you are feeling

5.  All or nothing/black or white:  one way or the other; no gray area

6.  A cruel inner critic:  personal bully

7.  Mind-reading:  assuming you know what others are thinking about you; there is no evidence

8.  Jumping to conclusions


She advises memorizing these cognitive distortions because you can start overcoming the negative patterns when you know your trigger. The next step is to question the inner critic and care for your mental well-being so you can trust to make the right decisions.


She also says that mental clutter thrives on negativity and low self-esteem problems.


Positive and negative thinking are based solely on your perspective and how you see things. When you feel positive, your mind is filled with good thoughts. What you radiate to your surroundings can be felt by those around us, often in abundance. You must think positively, feel calmer, and make more rational decisions. Your thoughts drive your behavior, ultimately defining your outcome. Stressful events will happen. Do not let the complications take over your mind.


A Book in Time's Commentary:


Professionally:  While I can see some validity where Tiffany is coming from, I tend to differ in some of my assessments of negativity and labels regarding it. For instance, I do not believe "mental clutter" is a thing that can "thrive." Mental clutter is a culmination of thoughts that have not been properly sorted and filed within your mind. They are unresolved thoughts in need of a place to rest.  When you have multiple situations occurring in your life, which is often daily, you need to address all the thoughts that collect as a result. Thoughts only have the meaning we assign to them. From a business perspective, analyze the thoughts regarding your work/career and consider what needs to be acted upon immediately and what may go a little further down the list. Start to focus on the pressing issues and, at a minimum, write them down so you can see them on paper. Sometimes seeing the issues in writing cluttering your mind already begins to minimize the impact. In addition, now they do not have to stay cluttered in your mind because they are in writing. You have just given them a filed location. You may now release them. Worry and stress are both a fear of what "could" happen. There is no sense in wasting thoughts about something that has not yet happened. It is more beneficial to consider what is within your control and work towards finding an appropriate method of resolving what is in front of you right at this moment. Perhaps workload is an issue. This is a precarious situation as it may not be something within your means to adjust. Consider what would make the situation more reasonable and perhaps present a request for additional help or services by providing a possible solution. Brainstorm various scenarios that could make your situation more fruitful and present a win-win strategy. Always consider how both parties could benefit from a change in the current status. This will provide the best chance of a favorable outcome for your current situation.


Personally:  I also have a different opinion regarding Tiffany's advice for anxiety in the present moment, to "Go with the flow." I believe there is too much "Go with the flow" in society today. We must all be our own thinkers BACKED WITH SOUND AND PROPER RESEARCH. Be very particular that you are using reliable resources. When you take the time to find out why, how, and so forth, you can better understand the current circumstance and make your own reasonable decisions. Herd mentality, or going with the flow, is a very dangerous practice. For anxiety, first, consider the source. Is it from a circumstance or event? Or is there no defining factor, leaning toward more of a chemical imbalance? For the latter, a thorough medical assessment should be considered to help your body properly attain what it may be lacking.  For the former, what is within your control regarding this event? Is it in the past? Or is it fear of some event yet to happen? Either situation is beyond your control at this point. Get to the heart of the issue and be kind to yourself as you work to resolve the essence of its existence. Forgive yourself for any past mistakes and let go of any guilt. Guilt is a self-conscious feeling focused on "self." It is a destroyer of emotional energy. Guilt is a wonderful guide to let you know when you have done something that causes an imbalance in your moral or ethical thermostat. However, it is important that you understand what may be causing this feeling, make amends, and learn from the source of it. Forgive yourself, and grow to make better choices and decisions. Take your focus off of "self."


Spiritually:  "Forgiveness is a great way to give love to yourself - and to other people. Love is your nature; don't resist what you really are. You can improve your life just by expressing what you are, just by following the love in your heart in everything you do. Today is a wonderful day to open your heart to love and forgiveness," Don Miguel Ruiz. Forgiveness heals your guilt. It helps you release past mistakes or regrets and lifts your vibrations. It brings calmness, inner peace, and strength into your life. "Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy," Proverbs 28:13. "Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, "I will confess my transgressions to the LORD." And you forgave the guilt of my sin," Psalms 32:5. Spiritual calmness is a goal filled with positive energy to strive towards. It best resonates within yourself when it involves these focus areas: "Having a positive mindset, meditating daily, praying daily, and being thankful," Being calm and possessing a gentle nature embody a peaceful frame of mind, decreased mental clutter, clarity in all your perceptions, and more loving relationships.


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