It’s December, arguably one of the most exciting, engaging, challenging, and overwhelming months of the year.
So today I invite you to try something I did in college and found so helpful I changed it to help me throughout my daily life.
A Brain Dump.
What is a brain dump you might very well ask?
It is just what it sounds like: You dump everything going on inside that brain of yours onto a piece of paper, a notebook, or a journal. Simple as that.
Let’s say your mind is racing with all the things you have to get done: Work, home, social, family, the holiday endless lists of to-do’s…It’s hard to keep it all straight and you feel overwhelmed by all the things either
a) You told yourself you have to do or
b) You said yes to.
The thing is, when our mind races with all the things we need to do, or the things we forgot to do, or the things we feel we were supposed to do; our mind struggles to organize it all and we become overwhelmed and stressed.
We start getting that tight feeling in our chest and the negative thoughts about our so-called inability to perform daily tasks rears its ugly head.
However, by simply using the brain dump activity you can calm your racing thoughts, organize your schedule, and feel human again.
Here’s how it goes:
Tonight, before bed, open your notebook, grab a piece of paper, or your journal and dump out that entire list of to-dos, to-gets, and to-accomplish that has been running wild in your brain all day. This usually only takes less than 5 minutes.
Don’t try to organize it or tell yourself to put it in categories like work, home, holiday, etc. Nope. Right now, we are literally just dumping everything out on the paper no order or hierarchy of needs.
Then, in the morning, look at your list and plan out your day. What needs to get done today? What can be delegated? (this is important, and also hard to do). Ask yourself: Can I tackle this one another day? What can wait until tomorrow or later in the week?
Personally, I like to do this every night, because I find that if I don’t I dream about everything I need to do, and my rest is not exactly restful as a result.
I have a special little notebook that I got especially for this task. I call it my brain dump journal. It goes with me everywhere. So, If I’m in line at the bank and I remember I need to wash the dog this weekend, I write it down.
If, I’m in a meeting and it sparks an idea for a project I’m working on, I write it down. Then each morning, I organize my to-do list for the day (okay to be honest, I also tend to make one for my husband but that’s another story lol).
But what if you don’t like writing things on paper?
That’s okay to! There are a lot of list making apps out there that will work just as good as a piece of paper.
I really like the app “Anylist”
But your phone comes with a notes app and that works good as well.
Don’t make this action stressful as well, find out what works for you. If doing this on the weekend is the best, then do it on the weekend. If you find you need to do it every day, then take 5 minutes to do it.
Try my brain dump idea my friends and see if it assists you in relieving your stress, organize yourself, and get things done.
This is self-care. To know what you need and how to accomplish it.
Remember YOU CAN DO THIS!