Minimalism: Minimize Your Thoughts

Sounds like I’m telling you to make yourself dumb, right? Not the case, but a mental slow down is definitely the ticket to a happier life. Nothing causes more distress in my life than mental clutter having nothing to do with anything I even care about.

I don’t know about any of the you guys, but nothing bums me out worse than thinking about how the jerk in the car in front of me cut me off five miles back or how the person I opened the door for didn’t even acknowledge me, let alone say thanks. How I don’t have some crazy six figure income from a career I don’t have or how I really don’t think I’ll ever go back to school. How I can’t bring myself to buy a two thousand dollar bike because where I live has nowhere to ride.

But here’s the thing, I don’t care about any of that stuff so why have I spent so much time thinking about these things? It’s easy to take things personally and think we should be living our lives in a certain way because that’s what society portrays as successful or important. Over the last few years of working on self improvement and dropping the baggage I never cared to carry and guess what, the world still turns.

The most important lesson I’ve ever learned in life is to focus on what I want instead of focusing on what I don’t want. Instead of focusing on the jerk that cut me off, I focus on the song I’m listening to or how lucky I am to even have a truck that runs reliably. Instead of focusing on the fact that I’ll probably never be a doctor, I focus on how I can make a living in the future doing what I want.

We all have an image of the life we want to live and we should spend our focus on how we can achieve that life. Our mind is constantly thinking about something and the times spent thinking about things we don’t want or don’t care about is time we could be using working towards our dream life. Not only will focusing on what we want make us happier in the meantime, but it’s our only option for actually achieving that life.

So, the choice is ours. We can either spend our time thinking about everything under the sun while only a minimal amount of our focus helps up move in the right direction or we can narrow our focus to what really matters to us and be all the better for it. What will you focus on?

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