Do you need a mind cleanse? If you’ve been feeling stressed, worried, overwhelmed, depressed, pessimistic, angry, or any other low-energy state, chances are you do.
The good news is, you don’t have to stay stuck in the muck. You can take action to purify your mind and gently purge what’s weighing you down and clouding your vision by joining me in a 30-day mind-cleanse practice. Purifying your mind brings clarity and peace and raises your vibration, imbuing you with a lightness of spirit. It creates a little fortress around your inner light to keep it shining, no matter what’s happening around you.
In today’s post, I’m sharing a 3-step daily practice that takes very little of your time. Yet, it can completely transform how you see yourself, other people, and the whole experience of life itself. That’s because it purifies your mind – the filter through which you view all this life-stuff. And, it elevates your energy at the physical, mental, and spiritual levels by changing what you focus on, as well as what you take in – energetically – from your environment.
Why A Mind Cleanse?
For starters, I want to say I need a mind cleanse. It’s why I’m writing this post. I’ve done it before, and I exert consistent effort to maintain a healthy headspace. But it’s been a long time since I’ve committed to a more intensive, prolonged purification process. Recently, it dawned on me, I really need it.
Presently the world feels like a mess. Like so many people, I’m feeling pandemic fatigue. The restrictions, debates on how to deal with it, loss of social interactions, holding space for not knowing what the world will look like at the end of all this, or even if there’s an end in sight. It’s all taking its toll, as the months keep rolling by.
Then there’s the relentless political tug-of-wars, all of which seem driven by egos (on both sides) too big to see (or really care about?) finding reasonable solutions. There’s the heartbreaking news coming out of Afghanistan. Hurricanes, wildfires, social unrest…the list goes on. And of course, this collective messiness piles up on top of whatever problems we have in our personal domains. Unfortunately, I’ve had my share of those lately, too.
I know life is messy by its very nature. But it just feels extra messy right now. Whether it’s truly more so now than ever before in my life – or I’m just more empathically affected by it – the result is, I’m feeling like my inner light is dimming.
This is why I’m embarking on a mind cleanse. Your reason(s) may differ. But regardless, if you’re feeling like you’re running low on energy, or experiencing any of those symptoms I mentioned at the start of this post, doing some inner housekeeping to clean-up and take control of your mind stuff can help. So can devoting conscious intention to the energy you’re attracting and cultivating within you. That’s what this 30-day practice is all about.
Getting More Intentional About It
The other day I went for a hike. As soon as my feet hit the trail, instinctively I started repeating my mantra inwardly to myself. It felt good, so I just kept going with it, all the way through to the end of my hike. Om mani padme hum, again and again. As I took in the natural beauty around me and placed my feet carefully on the rocky trail, the mantra took on a life and rhythm of its own. Which meant, there was no room for thoughts about the world’s troubles or my own. Just Om mani padme hum.
At the end of it, I felt refreshed – physically, mentally, and spiritually. Like my body-mind-spirit had just taken a long drink of cool, spring water. And as I was savoring the feeling of lightness this produced within me, a realization struck. I’ve been too bogged down by what’s happening around me, both in my personal sphere and in the collective domain. For too long, I’ve allowed myself to be polluted by the collective toxicity that’s gripped the world in recent years. Slowly, sneakily, and without my permission, it has seeped into my pores and squatted in my head.
How could it not? Messages of doom, gloom, fear, and division are everywhere. Permeating not just the news cycles, social media, and other public squares, but the noosphere (our collective human consciousness). I can’t predict, or control, where all this will take us – whether it be change for ill or good, or somewhere in between. All I can do is make sure I’m living in alignment with what I know to be healthy and good for my body-mind-spirit system.
Which means, I need to get more intentional about how I’m interacting with circumstances in the world and in my life. If I want to keep my mind peaceful, my light bright, and my spirit lifted, I need to put up some stronger energetic boundaries. And I need to take control of my mind-stuff, because it dictates so much of how I feel physically, mentally, and spiritually. Hence, I need to do a mind cleanse.
Do not try to fix whatever comes in your life. Fix yourself in such a way that whatever comes, you will be fine.Sadghuru
The 3-Step Mind Cleanse
The mind cleanse I’m doing, and sharing with you, involves three steps: mantra repetition, news detox, and self-reflection. Each practice is observed daily, and I’m committing to them for thirty days. That’s thirty days of feeding my mind wholesome energy, while restraining my intake of unwholesome energy. It’s like a fast, but for my mind.
At the time of this writing, I’m four days in. And already, I’m noticing big shifts in how I feel on all levels. My body feels lighter and more at ease. When I walk, it feels like I’m gliding. My posture is upright, my core strong – like my solar plexus chakra is pulsing with life energy.
Furthermore, my mind feels clearer. I’ve noticed it getting easier to simply let go of negative thoughts when they pop up. And there’s just a general sense of spaciousness opening up that’s helping me stay in contact with the present moment.
Finally, my spirit feels lifted. I’m more connected to hope, love, and my capacity to trust God’s work unfolding in the world and in my own life, instead of trying to figure it out in my head.
Combined, all of this amounts to me feeling freer, more inspired and more joyful. When challenges arise – as they naturally do from time to time – I’m finding I have more mental space to deal with them skillfully.
If these kinds of shifts sound good to you, and you’d like to join me on a mind cleanse, here’s how it works:
1. Mantra Repetition
The first – and most important – step of this mind cleanse is mantra repetition. It’s most important because it’s the wholesome energy you’ll be feeding your mind all throughout the day.
A mantra is a word or phrase that’s repeated – inwardly or aloud – as a tool that trains your mind to come under your control. This repetition gives your mind something to do. While thus preoccupied, it can’t wander anywhere and everywhere, like it tends to want to do. Neither can it ruminate on the kinds of mind stuff that create inner dis-ease – i.e. worries, fears, negative self-talk, etc.
Additionally, when we work with a mantra that carries positive intention, it aligns our whole body-mind-spirit system energetically with it. So, not only are we preventing our mind from chewing on negative or troubling content, but we’re infusing it with positive content. The sustained focus on our mantra creates conscious and subconscious shifts in how we relate to what’s happening within and around us.
(If you want to learn more about how mantras work, please read my mantra post).
Choosing A Mantra
You can choose any word or phrase that conveys the positive intention you’d like to infuse yourself with during your mind cleanse. And of course, if you already have a mantra you love, feel free to continue working with it. However, I’d like to highlight the one I’ve worked with for many years and offer it as a suggestion. That’s because it’s highly attuned to the intention of a mind cleanse.
Om mani padme hum is a Sanskrit mantra that has stood the test of time. It’s considered to be the most widely used mantra in the world. Which means, when you repeat it, you’re reaching out into the collective consciousness and connecting with millions of other like-minded people as they repeat it with you.
More importantly, Om mani padme hum means praise to the jewel in the lotus. And the jewel in the lotus refers to enlightenment, to the presence of God, the Universe, Creator, Source – however you may call it – manifesting in our hearts through wisdom, compassion, and love. The intention of this mantra is to purify our body, speech, and mind, so that we may be enlightened. So that we may live in alignment with wisdom, compassion, and love.
Isn’t that a beautiful intention? This mantra is pronounced ohm-mah-nee-pahd-may-hoom. (You can listen to it here.)
How To Cleanse Your Mind With Your Mantra
Once you’ve selected a mantra to work with, take some time to contemplate its meaning. Consider how you would like it to energetically align you, as well as what effects you would like it to have on your body-mind-spirit system. Set an overall intention for your mind cleanse practice.
Then, get acquainted with your mantra by doing a mantra meditation practice. Sit for about 20 minutes, repeating your mantra. You can do this aloud or silently. Your mind will likely resist staying with your mantra, as thoughts – maybe even body sensations – arise. That’s okay and normal. Just keep bringing yourself back to your mantra repetition.
You can continue doing a mantra meditation practice daily if you like. However, it’s not necessary for your mind cleanse. All you have to do is repeat your mantra – inwardly to yourself – whenever you don’t need your mind to actively accomplish something else. Basically, during your mind’s downtime.
Some examples of mental downtime include when you’re:
- Doing chores
- Taking a shower
- Going to sleep
- Upon awakening in the morning
- Brushing your teeth
It might be helpful for you to take some time to contemplate when you tend to worry, ruminate, or otherwise engage in unnecessary and unhealthy thinking habits. Then, set the intention to replace that mental chatter with the repetition of your mantra.
That’s it! It’s so simple, and yet it can produce powerful shifts in your inner states. The remaining steps are even easier.
2. Limiting Your News Intake
The first step of this mind cleanse feeds your mind good, healthy, and aligning energy. This second step works in the opposite direction. It restricts the kind of content you feed into your system.
While it’s important for us to stay informed of local and world affairs, there is such a thing as being too informed. And, too influenced. Unfortunately, today’s media is not in the business of just reporting the news. They’re in the business of influence – seeking to shape what we think, say, and do by playing on our emotions, especially fear and anger. Which means, when we spend too much time engaging with the news, we can end up unconsciously absorbing energies and worldviews that elicit and feed on fear and anger within us.
And depending on the kinds of connections you have on social media, this may be the case with the content you interact with there too. In preparation for your mind cleanse, it’s a good idea to evaluate what shows up in your social media feeds. Identify accounts that trend toward content that makes you feel angry, afraid, nervous, pessimistic, or otherwise distressed. Put those accounts on mute, at least for the duration of this practice. And if you don’t already have plenty of positive, higher-frequency content in your feed, find some new accounts to connect with.
Over the course of the next 30 days, I plan to post positive, inspiring messages that correlate to my own mind-cleanse process. I’d love to share them with you on Instagram and also hear from you about your experiences. Let’s connect!
Lastly, if there’s anyone you interact with in your personal life who regularly injects negativity, confusion, anger, etc., consider limiting your contact with them during this cleanse. I’m not saying cut ties completely. Just set a boundary around how much time you give to them and how much you’ll allow them to influence your state of mind when you’re with them.
The News Cleanse
It’s amazing how much the news we encounter on a regular basis can shape how we feel about the general state of the world and our fellow humans. For me, this can present a real struggle. Because I care a lot about what’s happening in the world. And when I see suffering, or things that seem like they could lead to suffering, it impacts me deeply. I don’t want to stick my head in the sand and pretend like everything is cheery and bright. But I also don’t want to see nothing but the worst of our human experience. It’s about balance and the WHOLE truth, which includes so many kind, inspiring, and uplifting stories happening around the world that the regular news just doesn’t focus on.
To bring more balance to your relationship with the news during your mind cleanse, you can choose one (or more) of the following approaches. I’m doing the last 3.
- Completely disconnect from news.
- Set a time limit to how much time you’ll spend with the regular news. Ideally, it’s very minimal. You should be able to catch up on any important events with just 10 minutes.
- Skip news headlines that are obviously inflammatory.
- Seek out positive news stories. (Some news sites are dedicated to more uplifting news, like Good News Network, Positive.News, and Sunny Skyz.)
3. Self-Reflection On Your Mind Cleanse
The final step is taking the time to reflect on what shifts your mind cleanse is cultivating within you. This serves two purposes. First, it helps keep you motivated. As you notice positive changes, you’ll naturally feel more inclined to stick with your practices. Secondly, it can help you identify thought habits you may not have been aware of at work within you.
What kinds of resistance are popping up? How and why is it challenging for you to observe these practices? What types of thoughts seem to interfere most with your mantra repetition? Observing all this can be surprisingly enlightening.
For your daily self-reflection, carve out some time to check-in with yourself. It can be in the morning, at night, or any time that fits into your schedule. How long you take is up to you, but you really only need a few minutes. Long enough to ask yourself a few questions:
- How is my body feeling?
- How is my mind feeling?
- How is my spirit feeling?
- Are there any noticeable changes occurring?
- What feels challenging about my mind cleanse right now?
- Are there any adjustments to my practice that might benefit me?
You can reflect on all this in a journal if you like. Or, simply in thought. Close your self-reflection by re-affirming the intention you set for yourself in step one.
To undertake a mind purification process is to acknowledge just how powerful your mind is. And how much the content and habits of your mind influence your lived experience. It’s a decision to take out the trash and clear the way for right thinking. The kind of thinking that aligns you with your highest intentions.
At the end of this 30-day mind cleanse, I know I’ll be more aligned at every level with my highest intentions. And I’ll have an energetic boundary around me to preserve that alignment. I hope you’ll join me, and that your own process aligns you with your highest intentions for your body-mind-spirit and your life.