Through many years of experimenting with meditation, mindfulness, and conscious living, I couldn’t not notice how busy our mind is. And every external input stirs it over and over again (that’s why when beginning with a meditation practice you have your eyes closed to eliminate distractions- and yet it will jump onto sounds, smells, sensations, etc.)
After studying somatics and the connection our body-mind has to our environment through the nervous system, I started noticing how much are we actually affected by what’s around us. The need for safety is so primal, that it never stops. And so we take in all the sensory cues available to determine how we feel about our environment (which then impacts the body reaction in terms of holding, tension, posture, etc.).
Bringing it back to the practical – creating a well-intentioned and safe environment is crucial for living and achieving what you want! I am gonna give you two examples of how your environment supports your productivity and efficiency through the lens of time and emotion.
Eliminating distractions supports your focus which in turn uses your time more efficiently. It always takes time to refocus! So if you wonder where has your time gone, it’s a good practice to look at where has your focus gone as well. Have you been distracted by frustration? Memory? Or another to-do?
If your intention and action go hand in hand, you achieve flow. On the contrary, if your action is work, yet your intention is to fix your environment, your flow is hindered and you get less done (a very simplified version of a long rant about this fascinating topic).
Now with emotions, it’s even more complex. Feeling good and safe is essential for creativity and productivity. And trust me, everything that’s around you doesn’t come unnoticed.
If you surround yourself with clutter that has no longer a purpose, your “monkey mind” will get reminded of all the underlying stories that go with it. The postponed decisions, the yet to-dos, the rather forgotten impulsive buys, and so on… And it doesn’t even have to be a clutter. Sometimes we might be surrounding ourselves with items we used to like, while later on coming to realize this stuff stirs emotions such as nostalgia or sadness.
By creating a supportive environment, we can regulate the emotional baseline we start our day with. So make sure, that what you have in your environment brings your emotional baseline up rather than down. Surround yourself with inspiration, happy memories, warmth, etc. Try having fewer to-dos, fewer ambitions, and fewer items stirring shame (the common emotion I encounter as a reason for holding onto unneeded stuff).
To expand this topic, I am adding my old video I created to play around with this concept.
So what can you do now? Bring your attention to what’s around you! I know, it’s been there for so long, that you don’t even notice it anymore (which is another brain phenomenon that I am going to discuss later), yet it’s still there and it’s being subconsciously processed.
Stay with your items in full awareness and inquire into how they make you feel. Is it a feeling of urgency to act, of shame, procrastination…? Know that this feeling is subconsciously there for as long as the item stays in your line of vision.
Act! Take the time to deal with the items that distract you or bring you down and watch whether you feel lighter, and gained some extra time to do the things you love. If you feel stuck and can’t seem to take the action needed, talk to a professional organizer.
P.S. To create this post, I have drawn from knowledge accumulated over years of inquiring and studying these topics. There’re no particular links or sources to refer to. Although if you’re curious, message me and we can discuss this topic and its sources deeper.