Clear the Mind First, Then Clear the Space - Trail Runners Journey

Clear the Mind First, Then Clear the Space

Recently I needed some downtime so a friend asked me to go with her to a psychic fair. Considering that I am of the card reading type, I decided to go and had a feeling that it was what I needed. Even though I didn’t get my cards read, I was just happy just to be hanging out around with the crystals, gemstones, incense, and other such pretty stuff. It was nice just to “be there” and not be expected to do anything. Later that day, my husband and I were talking about Spirit Animals so I pulled out my Spirit Animal Oracle deck to see what comes up. He got the Black Panther card with the description being pretty bang on and he was quite happy about the result. So my turn to shuffle and see what shows up. And there it was…

The Frog. What?? The Frog??!! How friggin’ sexy is that?? NOT! Don’t get me wrong, I like frogs, am a big Kermit fan and all, but a frog as my Spirit Animal? How totally gaaaahhh!!! I wanted a strong, warrior type card, dammit!! I read the description and it too was bang on.

A frog signifies purification: clear out the clutter, clean up any messy areas of one’s life.

As I sit looking at the stacks of books that I have to read, read again, use for reference, borrowed from the library, and just purchased from Amazon, my first thought was that there is where the clutter is. No, wait! Maybe it’s the closet, or the front entry. Then the thought hit me. “What if what’s visible is a reflection of what’s going on inside? What if it’s my mind that needs decluttering first?” Now there’s a revelation and an uncomfortable one.

Usually I can consider a thought like that to be fleeting until a message of similar comes shortly thereafter. And it did in the form of a video in the Darren Daily motivation emails that I receive. Basically the gist of the video is that we are a culmination of the books we read and the people we spend time with. It’s the part about the people that stuck like a cactus thorn.

What is it about other people that is leaving me with a bunch of clutter in my mind? After pondering a bit, I made a (partial) list:

  • Facebook. Talk about a time black hole and do I really need to be “in the know” with stuff I could care less about or don’t want know about?
  • Other people’s drama. Seriously, do I really need to be that enlightened?
  • Comparing myself to others. Ouch!!! Guilty!! Enter the “not good enough”, “not fast enough”, and (for the bonus) “not the ideal weight”.
  • The past. Why is it that high school has such a strong definer on who I think I am today?
  • Opinions and judgments, both mine and others that stick like Velcro. Let’s throw in all of the comments about being slow, fat, never amount to anything, I’m not like that person… (no kidding)….
  • Expectations. This include all of the “shoulds” from should have, should want, because someone said so, because someone else is doing ….
  • Even though the list can go on, I’m good to stop here thanks.

To look at it, that’s a lot of needless junk baggage to be carting around. And how much energy and time is squandered as a result? Makes one wonder, doesn’t it?

If I want to achieve what I want in life I can’t be saddled down with needless junk. In running there is a phrase “no junk miles“, a phrase which I am going to adopt in other areas of my life starting with what’s occupying my thoughts and my time.

So how am I going to declutter the mental junk out of my life? Here’s my plan:

  • Facebook.
    • Even though I’m on other Social Media, Facebook is the one that’s most annoying.
    • Decide the purpose that Facebook has in my life and how I’m to use it as a tool, not a social life.
    • Limit my time. Go on with a focus, a purpose, do what I need to do, and get off when done.
    • Clean up my news feed so that posts are what I want to see instead of Facebook deciding for me. This does entail unfollowing, maybe unfriending, but certainly hiding of posts and related content that does not mesh with me.
    • I adamantly REFUSE to have the Facebook app on my phone. Messenger, yes. Facebook, not a chance. I can always access Facebook via browser. More work that way and I’m lazy.
  • For the drama.
    • Take an inventory of friends and family to see who the drama queens and poor-me’s are and set some boundaries with them. Do I need to limit my time around them? Redirect the conversation? (limiting Facebook tends to eliminate a lot of drama)
    • Where am I creating the drama? Now that’s a juicy one! This requires brutal honesty and a willingness to do something about it.
    • News and other such crisis, do I really need to know EVERYTHING that’s going on? Be selective here and tune into what’s really important (to me).
  • Self comparisons, opinions and judgments
    • A point to consider: would I treat a friend that way? That kind of stings a bit. If I’m kind to a friend, I also need to be kind to me. I’m a little shaky with this one, this is going to take some doing.
    • Focus on aspects of me that are my strong points. My hair, I have great hair. Oh! I’m strong-willed, good thing to have during an ultramarathon or the TranSelkirks 5-day staged race that I’m in. Time to make a list….
  • The past.
    • Let it go already!! Learn the lesson and move on. Good grief, I’m not the same person as I was a week ago, so stop dredging forward someone I once was how many lifetimes ago? Besides who I was back then doesn’t define who I am now. Focus forward, not forward while looking in the rearview mirror. Try that while driving. Actually no, don’t do that.
  • The expectations and the “shoulds”.
    • I once heard that “shoulds” are like shitting on one’s self. Ewwww! Nuff said. Punt!

If I cleared out the clutter of my mind and let the breeze blow through, what would that be like? How would that affect the rest of my life? My relationships? My ultramarathon training? My home? Would I have more time and energy to focus on what I want to do and accomplish? What would that clutter be replaced with? Only one way to find out.

What’s some clutter you’ve cleared out of your life and what was the result? Post in the comments below.

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