By Abrar Raza
You must have noticed a pattern in certain people. They feel so overwhelmed by situations in life and do not feel like they can deal with their day to day stress anymore. Gradually their emotional and mental state gets affected with anxiety issues, stress, panic attacks, and a lot of other major disorders.
I believe this is, in large part, a consequence of the times that we live in. There was a time when we hardly needed to take care of our body, emotions, and mental well-being. However, with the drastic changes in our lifestyles in a very short span of time, it has become imperative to take care of ourselves. We must take care of our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health in a conscious manner by putting an extra effort towards it.
So far we have not been able to accept this shift in lifestyle even for our healthy body; let alone the discussion of how far we lag in taking care of our mental and emotional well-being. In this article, I am going to talk about one major way to take care of our mental and emotional wellness.
This way is to avoid and regularly dispose off the mental and emotional garbage that we consciously or unconsciously keep on collecting on a daily basis.
Mental and Emotional garbage is the unnecessary and unwanted clutter in our brain, our thoughts and our feelings, that keep on piling up on a daily basis.
During waking hours our senses bring in a lot of thoughts into our brain. Whenever we hear something or smell something, or taste something we happen to get certain thoughts, and those thoughts, in turn, invoke feelings in us – and vice-versa.
Out of all the senses, our eyes and ears bring the maximum information into our brain. Thus those two are the major sources of input to our thoughts.
However, wrapped into those inputs is some much-unwanted information that enters our brain. That unwanted and unnecessary information are the basic sources of our emotional and mental garbage.
Just like in our house, or in our environment, when a pile of garbage accumulates, it becomes a source of disease if not disposed away on time. Similarly, for our emotional and mental health, we must keep our mind, thoughts and feelings clear from that unwanted garbage.
Sleep Your Way to Good Mental Hygiene
Sleep is nature’s way of forcing our brain to clean a lot of our mental and emotional garbage. Sleep allows our brain to rewire, reconnect, sort, discard, and process lot of sensory information that we received during waking hours. And it keeps only that information which happens to make a conscious and clear impact on our thoughts and feelings.
However, only sleep is not sufficient enough for our mental and emotional well-being these days. Just like we must weed out a field of crop, we must also try to weed out unwanted thoughts, feelings and emotions by making a conscious effort.
Major Sources of Mental and Emotional Garbage
People and Interaction: Whenever we happen to interact with any person around us, we absorb a lot of their perspectives, judgments, biases, error in their thinking, notions, as well unwanted information which we may neither need nor want. This happens automatically. We cannot stop it from happening. Being social creatures, interaction and communication come very close to our survival need. However, the flip side is that we can hardly filter out and receive or pass on only clear and constructive communication.
Situations and Events: Almost on a daily basis, we happen to find ourselves in the midst of certain unwanted situations or events. Those situations in itself might not bring a lot of clutter into our mind, however, the way we are able to deal with, react and respond to them, could create a lot of mental and emotional garbage. At times, our affected thoughts and emotions happen to stick in the mind for a very long time, making us incapacitated.
However, just like we keep garbage and and non-garbage items apart in our homes, we also need to separate them in our minds. We must keep disposing of the garbage that gets created in our mental as well as physical environment. This is critical for our mental and emotional stability.
In part two to this article, I will talk about the methods and ways of disposing mental and emotional garbage. This will enable us to live in a stress-free, light, and focused state. So stay tuned for the continuation.
Lastly, stay light, and stay clutter-free; Physically, Emotionally and Mentally.
Editorial Note: If you liked this article, and are interested in more insightful and informative writing on Mental Health, then check out our section on Mental Health Inspiration.
About the Author
Abrar Raza is an expert Counselling Psychologist for Personal Development, Self Improvement, Family & Relationship Issues, Workplace Wellness, Managing & Coping various life events and situations, and for overall Emotional Well-being. He is based out of Delhi and works as a Consultant Corporate Counsellor with WorkplaceOptions and Optum. He also takes private consultation at his residence. He also dedicates few hours to a well-known Online Counseling portal YourDost.
Abrar carries with himself more than 8 years of experience in 3 MNCs, at a Super Specialty Hospital, in Delhi Family Court, and at a National Child Guidance Center. As an Alumnus of Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi, his work is fully dedicated towards the Mental and Emotional well-being and wellness of the youth of India. He tries to spread knowledge and awareness through his YouTube channel to the Hindi speaking population. You may follow his work on the following social media platforms: