I have been happily addicted to playing Mahjong on my phone.

The goal is to match pairs of identical tiles until all are removed from the board.

I rarely win. Maybe it is the soothing Chung Chong sound it makes when I match a pair.

The main strategy is to free up as many options as possible as soon as possible.

For example, clearing the tile with the two circles at the top of the pile opens up many possibilities.

The same with tiles on the edges.

The worst scenario is when a tile blocks copies of itself. I think there is a lesson in that! We do get in our own way sometimes.

It took me a few months to become aware that I was wasting a lot of mental energy mapping English names to the tiles: red sword, ‘n’, M & M, 1-bar, …

All that did was slow me down.

It is much easier to scan for patterns without thinking verbally.

Like when a person learns a second language and stops translating in their head and starts thinking directly in the new language.

Or a musician simply plays fluidly without thinking about theory or technique.

Simply playing in the moment.

Some would call that Flow.

If you find yourself with a Noisy Mind, no matter what you are doing, ask if the mental chatter, calculations, second-guessing, and like are helping with the task at hand or holding you back.

Look for the simplest, most direct way.

Easier said than done, but important for your success and peace of mind.

Practice Calm Mind, Grass-hopper.