03/22/2013 01:47 am ET Updated May 21, 2013

Clean Out the Mental Clutter

This spring, when you begin hauling the garbage out of the garage, or cleaning out that closet -- you know, the one with the paper plates and the aspirin and the three-year-old coupons next to the nail polish and glitter glue (or maybe that's just me) -- also take a little time to clean out the mental clutter.

We all have this kind of mental garbage, the sabotaging beliefs and ideas that keep us trapped in our feelings of inadequacy and boredom. We get bogged down, stuck in the same ol' routine, caught up in our feelings of worry and stress that keep us from making progress and enjoying our life. But you can let go of this mental rubbish, and lighten up your life this spring.

Here are five ways to do it:

1. Pay attention to those inner voices. Notice how you talk to yourself. If it's negative and degrading, if you beat yourself every time you make a mistake, that clutter needs to be cleaned out. It will only keep you stuck in a track of self-sabotage. The way you talk to yourself determines whether you'll soar or sink. Notice it and take a more positive, compassionate approach.

2. Reconcile your actions and desires. If you talk like you want to lose weight but you fill your cupboards with sweet treats you are sabotaging your success and creating a whole lot of stress in your life. We feel bad when we aren't true to ourselves, when what we say does not align with what we do. So, let's clean out that bad habit. Start by deciding what you really want (it's OK to pick the sweets over the weight loss if that's truly what you want) -- get clear on it -- then clean out any mental and physical clutter that doesn't support the goal.

3. Become a creator, not a complainer. If it seems like you are never getting ahead, or you start out with great intentions only to fall short on your goals, spring is the time to release from that kind of self-sabotage. Take a look at the things that aren't working, the things you are always complaining about and decide to stop complaining and create a new, positive experience in the life direction you want to go.

For example, me complaining about being worn down and tired all the time only added to my fatigue. So, I decided to create a different experience. I began exercising regularly and started going to bed a bit earlier. I stopped my habit of complaining about how tired I was at the end of the day, soon I even stopped thinking about it. And, I began feeling better and more energized. I created a new experience. Look for the ways you can create a new, positive experience in your life instead of complaining about the old one.

4. Do something for someone else. Nothing clears out the mental cobwebs like helping someone else. When you feel like you are stuck in a rut, do something to help someone else and you'll be reminded just how powerful you are and what a positive difference you make in the world.

5. Act spontaneously. I'm not kidding when I say I have to plan to be spontaneous, but it feels exhilarating and interesting and fun to wake up in the morning without a plan.

Schedule some time to just go with the flow and enjoy whatever comes your way. Novelty awakens our imagination, inspires our creativity, helps us solve problems, and really helps us look at our familiar routine in a new way. That's a good way to clean out the mental blocks that can get you down.

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