And the Lord answered me, and said,
Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables,
that he may run who reads it.
We often think of disorganization and chaos in a spatial sense– a disorderly house, messy desk, and cluttered room, but physical disorganization is only the result of mental chaos. I often tell my clients, “if you have junk drawers in your house, then you have junk drawers in your heart.” Why would anyone want junk, junk food, or junk drawers? The reason is, settling for junk is a result of unresolved emotional clutter.
Unresolved clutter or baggage in our heart (i.e. the mind) will descend into disarray and eventually manifest physically, with untold consequences to our mental health if left unchecked. As a result, the pain accumulates and spills out into our personal lives, relationships, habits, work, and physical space. The need to address clutter is necessary if one wants to have a healthy mind, and just like we take the time to declutter our homes, it’s important that we take even more time to free our minds from all the fog and disorganization in order to have mental peace and emotional freedom.
The real question is, how do we resolve unresolved emotional clutter? Most of us have families, relationships, and life circumstances that keep us from taking the time to see behind the veil of our hearts and address deep-rooted unresolved issues, these being the core issues of our hearts. So, let’s start with the basics by first understanding what a disorganized mind means.
What Does a ‘Disorganized Mind’ Mean and How Does it Affect Me?
For many, a disorganized mind can be a perpetual state of rumination over worries or stresses. It often includes the inability to stay on top of tasks - and be punctual. You may jump from one thing to another with no real linear progression and often never bring any task to completion.
You may constantly feel overwhelmed, become easily distracted, or suffer from forgetfulness or exhaustion from the lack of a steady routine. When your mind is disorganized, it can be difficult to stay focused on the task at hand and maintain relationships in your life. The world may seem too big and out of control, consequently, you feel behind and the constant need to catch up.
Disorganized thoughts can lead to disorientation, irritability, and confusion, making it difficult to focus or think clearly. This disorganization in turn can cause fatigue, negative thinking patterns, an inability to cope with stress or anxiety, lapses in memory recall, and difficulty sleeping. Without proper organization in the mind, it is difficult to maintain composure and achieve optimal levels of functioning in daily life.
This is a struggle that many women suffer with daily due to the high demands of life. Emotional peace and stability are becoming less common due to the intensity of life’s demands, family, and the need to constantly be on the go. The need to always be ‘on’ whether at home, work, church, or while doing life with family can be overwhelming. When our to-do lists seem endless, it's easy to shut down and check out. As a result, we often find ourselves living in and with clutter and chaos. The result is feeling emotionally out of control and thus unable to keep the world around us in control.
Why Do I Need Organization?
God is a God of order. He created us to have a purpose, and purpose cannot be achieved without order and structure. Life without structure and order can lead to depression, feeling drained and cognitively depleted. This in turn affects our anxiety levels, sleep, ability to focus, and productivity. Clutter can also trigger copious amounts of junky habits (i.e. junk food, junk TV, junk drawers, overspending, binge-watching, binge eating, etc.) These habits further deplete us from taking charge of our disorganized state. But enough is enough! Now is the time to stop the spiral and get to the root of cluttered chaos and take the steps toward healing.
Steps to Change
I can spend all this time giving you a list of practical steps to follow to get your mind in order, and I will don’t worry. But overall, a truly healed and organized mind can only come from our creator. Since God is our creator he alone needs to be our recreator. Therefore, healing of the mind must essentially come from and through him. This is the first and crucial step.
- Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. Matthew 12:34
- The good man brings goods stored in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. Luke 6:45
- The heart is deceitful above all else who can understand it. Jeremiah 17:9
These scriptures make it clear that we have things that are stored up in our minds that are good and bad. We can do our best to follow all the rules in our own strength but we will fall and mess up. The only way to get on track and stay on track is with the Lord’s deep healing. Our house is likened to our heart (i.e. the mind). He alone has to help us clean the inside of our cluttered house and resolve the chaos in our lives.
So I encourage you to start the healing process by first asking God these three questions:
- Why am I disorganized?
- Lord, is there anything in me that you want to change?
- Where do you want me to start?
Simply asking God why can help you to start to understand the root of the matter. If the root of the issue isn’t addressed it’s easy to slip back into old patterns of thinking and doing. Perhaps you lived a childhood with no structure, maybe you weren’t taught how to maintain your space, or maybe you developed a disdain for orderliness because there was too much pressure as a child. Either way, chronic disorganization is deeply rooted and multilayered. One must start to peel the layers and understand the motives behind the thoughts and feelings. These motives drive our reactions and our reactions.
Physical and spatial organization can only aide in the process of mental and emotional healing, ultimately clearing the mind so you feel ready and able to address the core issues. As we enter into the process of peeling back the layers and discovering the root cause of the chaos in our lives practical steps are also necessary to clear the mental clutter. These three steps can help you to start the process of clearing your mental and physical space.
Keeping a journal gives your mental state the structure it needs to remain manageable and organized. Not only does writing out your thoughts physically help you to process, organize, and reflect on them, but it also helps you gain perspective, set goals, and develop plans of action to make positive changes in life. With a focused outlet for all your disorganized thoughts, journaling can effectively clear space in your mind and empower you to take back control of your life.
Prayer is the pathway to peace. It heals the mind and reconnects us to God. Studies show that just 12 minutes of prayer a day can have a significant impact on the mind. So even if you’re pressed for time, dedicating even a small block of time to prayer and worship can help to resolve emotional pain and clutter.
The lack of routine can lead to scattered thoughts. Routines free up that brainpower wasted on decision-making and provide a clear blueprint for how each day should flow. This allows for a sense of security that you cannot find in disorganization, which then creates space in your mind for more productive outputs such as problem-solving or creative endeavors. Building habits through routines will help heal your mind by providing structure and is the only way to truly free up space.
Lifestyle and Nutrition:
What goes in will eventually come out. It’s important to be aware of our lifestyle. What you eat, watch, where you go who you interact with can lead to a constant state of mental clutter and chaos if these habits and relationships aren’t healthy. Just know that the junk in our lives will inevitably impact how we function mentally.
The mind is a powerful tool that needs regular care and tending to maintain focus, balance, and clarity. Jesus says, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” John 14:27 We have assurance from our Heavenly Father that we can have peace. This peace comes only from him and surpasses our understanding. Though unpacking and healing from an emotionally chaotic life can be daunting, we don’t have to bear the burden of unpacking our cluttered chaos alone. He desires to walk with us through the healing journey, carry our emotional burdens and remove the clutter that keeps us in mental disarray. Now that you know there is hope and a way out, what will the rest of your journey be?
Until Next Time...