Just like you would give your physical body a detox, I want to do the same thing but in an effort to help my mental state. I am hoping to find a sort of refresh method to help clear my head and help improve proficiency in my thoughts.
1: Accept that Life is Not Easy
I purchased a really lovely book the other day called “How to Be Happy, Dammit” and Lesson #1 says: “Pain exsists. Life can hurt. Like a lot.” This wears on everyone. It’s not easy to take all that and not feel down sometimes. But the first step to fixing the problem is to acknowledge that there is one.
2: Make Time
I’m setting aside a three and half day weekend for this, although time duration should vary from person to person.
3: Choose to Make Progress
Surprise, surprise, you won’t get anywhere if you go into this with a bad attitude. Now I know this might be hard, but at least give it a shot. Wake up and remind yourself that today is going to be a good day, and that you are going to try. Realize that there is good in just about everything and everyone, you’ve just got to be open to it.
4: Get rid of the negative
This might seem obvious, but there are always negative things about life that we choose to keep in our lives when we know we don’t need to. There may also be issues, or other problems that can’t ignore completely. Regardless, for your set amount of time, try and keep that out of mind so it won’t prevent you from progressing. (tackle this challenge AFTER the detox).
It’s okay to realize that you might need to let go of something. It might be really difficult, it probably should be. But once you realize that you need to let it go, you’ve got to face that and let it happen instead of trying to force it to stay.
If you’ve never meditated, search Guided Meditation on YouTube and try a couple out. Everyone has different preferences, I like some of The Honest Guys stuff, on days when I’m mentally tired. For days when I’m feeling mentally empowering, I find that relaxing background sounds help me the most. Turned down low, this is one of my favorites: 6 Hour Deep Meditation Music.
A friend of mine recommended this method to me a few months ago, and I have found it helpful although difficult. The purpose of meditating (for me at least) is to gain control of my thoughts. I sometimes let old emotions come back into my head when they have no purpose. meditating has helped me start to gain control over what I feel emotions towards and has helped me address the problems I previously found too touchy to tackle.
6: Set Aside Your Phone and Technology
Convenient enough for me, my phone broke the other day. So I spent half a day frustrated that I couldn’t get a text through or check Pinterest. I wish I’d realized sooner that in a world so dominated by technology, I had the perfect opportunity in my hand to set aside my phone and socially acceptable reason not to talk to anyone for the next couple of days. Setting aside your phone can make the difference between what you do, who you encounter, and the way you feel.Which leads me to my next point…
7: Drink Tea, Treat Yourself
Take a bubble bath. Drink Tea. Clean your nails. Do your hair and makeup. Take a beauty nap. Dress up nice. Wear some perfume/cologne. Do whatever you do to make yourself feel nice, then own it.
8: Go Out and Do Something Fun By Yourself or With A Close Friend
I went to a nearby mall with a friend to see the Rain Forest Cafe Alligator. It wasn’t as exciting as it should have been to me, but all in all the trip to the mall was just about one of the best things I did that day. My friend and I spent about 6 hours together shopping, playing games and music, and talking.
It doesn’t matter what you enjoy doing, just go do it and acknowledge that you are going to have a good time, because this is something you enjoy, and you aren’t having a good time, you aren’t doing something you love. So find something that makes you feel like you, and frees your mind from the stress of everything else.
9: Talk to the People you Encounter Throughout the Day
It may be a lot of people, it may only be a few, but still just talk to the people you run into on the elevator or in a waiting room. I’ve found that some of the most interesting parts of people come out when you’re complete strangers.
Once I went to Tempe Town Lake late at night, and sat on the ledge above the water. There was a man nearby who was fishing and we started talking. Turns out he was from across seas, and was trying to get his family to move out here. He liked fishing because it reminded him of his kids… they don’t have to significant topics or things, but the little things are the ones that connect people more than anything.
10: Play the music you feel like you should be ashamed of listening to
For me it’s the Backstreet Boys. But I love listening to their music, every once in a while. I spent a good hour, drawing pictures, listening to the Backstreet Boys, and smiling. Smiling without thinking about it is your indication that you’re doing something right.
11: Spend Time with People Who Don’t Make You Anxious
This might be tricky for some, especially big introverts. I’m going to speak from that perspective. Being an introvert I need to spend lots of time alone. Tons of time. This is how I recharge my introvert batteries that allow me to go out and expend energy. Most people take power away from my batteries, and that’s normal, There are a few people in my life that drain my batteries slower than others. Find those people, or person, and spend some quality time with them.
My family has become this slower battery draining friendship circle to me. It varies sometimes when I’m home, but most of the time I know that I can be who I am without them turning their backs on me because they love me, and I love them. They don’t make me feel bad for who I am and what I want.
Everyone deserves to have people like this, and if you can’t think of any, please go find some.
12: Choose a Few Things You’d Like to Improve on and Start Working on it
I love planning. Parties, agendas goals, anything really. I do pride myself in being able to adapt to the situation but I still love setting goals. One of the big things I’ve been working on is self image. I’ve had kind of a hard time with how I’m shaped sometimes because I do let the images of women that are so present affect me in some way. So these past few days I’ve been trying to start setting up a routine that help me recognize that I don’t have to fit to the mold of body type or anything for that matter!
Clear your mind of predispositions and look at things from YOUR perspective. You don’t have to be happy based on what the world tells you do, you create your own happiness. Try your best to live in the world and add to it’s uniqueness instead of being another cookie cutter shape.
13: Organize Something and Reduce
It’s wonderfully relaxing to just organize something, everything! But seriously, taking something and rearranging to fit better to your situation will give you some serious peace of mind. For me I organized my room, which took quite a bit of time. I live in a cramped space with a lot of stuff (12 instruments, if that isn’t enough by it self), but rearranging everything to fit how I need has helped open up the space and made everything feel more calm.
Feeling stressed can greatly affect your ability to control your emotions. The tiniest actions will bother you, and can become so extreme as to another person’s breathing makes your want to punch them. You won’t be able to do anything like this, so try to figure out why you are feeling this way, and once you’ve established this, (or determined that you can’t), distract yourself. In my experience, organize.
What I found was most important about organizing, was identifying the material things I was holding onto that no longer served a purpose or held any value to me. So I tossed some stuff. Mostly old notebooks and tags from things I knew I’d never scrapbook or find important again. (I prefer pictures over tickets). By the time I was done, I felt relaxed, calm and accomplished, the recent stress was gone, and I didn’t have to have a sour attitude. It’s almost like you can rack through your brain subconscious and dump the things you don’t need, or at least start the process of letting them go.
“I’d rather embrace my past for what it is rather than hide from what I can’t change.”
14: Learn to Accept Things for What They Are
Regardless of what it is, accept that it is that way in your life. Accept your friends, family and peers for the things they say, do and want. Accept yourself for who you are, where you are, and what you want. Accept your situation. That doesn’t mean settle for what it is, change it if it needs to be changed. If you’ve got a problem, don’t put it off and ignore it, address it and start the scary process of fixing it.
15: Watch the Sunrise/Sunset (Or Both!)
I’m lucky enough to live in a place where beautiful Sunsets are fairly regular. I mean, check this out! Pretty nice isn’t it? There is something just so relaxing about watching the sunset or sunrise. It’s a good reminder that the only constant thing in this world is change and that there is always beauty. So keep looking for those beautiful moments, appreciate them and know that most of them are small and may seem insignificant, but those are the ones that make the difference.
Good luck with your detox, let me know how it goes and feel free to send me suggestions!
There are a number of other good sites that have other suggestions. Feel free to check them out!