Week 6: Decluttering your Mind (The Bullet Journal Method Book Club)

Hello Sunshine!

This week we have a deep topic with a meaningful exercise attached. You may be a little familiar with what Ryder calls a Mental Inventory - it’s something he talked about in his Ted Talk. However, he breaks it down much further in his book and even has a visual example, which is very helpful. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by everything you have going on, I would recommend taking some time to read this chapter again and working on creating your own Mental Inventory. I created the synopsis for this week’s discussion to include as much of the meat as possible to help you out the most here, so hopefully you’ll feel confident to create it and reflect on your goings on.


This week’s behind the scenes:

I took inspiration from Ryder’s simple and powerful 3 column Mental Inventory that he described and demonstrated in his book and added a little bit more to it to help you out, while keeping in mind what later parts of the book will address with it. Feel free to download it below.


Decluttering your Mind

Pages 34 - 41

Welcome to week 6 of The Bullet Journal Method Book Club. In this section, Ryder talks about decision fatigue and how “the first step to recovering from decision fatigue, to get out from under the pile of choices weighing on you, is to get some distance from them. You need some perspective to both clearly identify and corral your choices.”

In order to do this, Ryder recommends grabbing a blank sheet of paper and creating something called the Mental Inventory.

Create a Mental Inventory as Ryder describes,
“1. In the first column, list all the things you are presently working on.
2. In the second, list all the things you should be working on.
3. In the last column, list all the things you want to be working on.”

Next, ask yourself the two questions Ryder recommends for each task you wrote down:
“1. Does this matter?
2. Is this vital?”
If you’re having trouble answering these, Ryder recommends also asking yourself, “what would happen if said item just didn’t get done. Ever. Would there be any real repercussions?”

Lastly, Ryder mentions that “any item that doesn’t pass this test is a distraction. Cross it off. Be ruthless.”
After crossing distracting tasks from your Mental Inventory, you’re left with what Ryder calls your “Responsibilities and Goals” list. How different does this look from your initial Mental Inventory?
Did you find this Mental Inventory exercise helpful? What did you learn about yourself?

Feel free to take this opportunity to share your Mental Inventory with us. If you don’t want to share your Mental Inventory, let us know what you learned in doing this exercise. Did you have any questions about this section?

Mental Inventory Worksheet

Taking inspiration from Ryder’s Mental Inventory, I added a couple of columns to each category so you can easily mark it with a dot task Bullet. This will be useful so you can easily migrate these at a later part of the book.

Your thoughts:

Share your thoughts about this week’s topic in the comments below. Feel free to respond to this week’s discussion points.

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