I don’t care how much you love your job and your friends and your boyfriend and your life, even the best of us fall into a rut sometimes. I’ve been traveling on and off for the past three weeks, and yesterday I just had a case of the blahs. I had every intention of doing functioning adult activities, but instead I napped on my couch at 7 p.m and then ended up making a PB&J for dinner. Not exactly a “kick ass and take names” kind of day.
At first I felt bad about my total inability to do anything productive. Then I realized it was just a “nope” day. “Nope” days happen to the best of us. Try as you might, you just can’t get yourself in gear, so you have to issue a big ole “nope!” and start again tomorrow. By accepting that the day is a wash, you allow yourself to move on and start the next day feeling refreshed.
A few other tricks that are useful when you need to get yourself out of a rut:
- Watch other people doing what they love: I was staring at a blank screen during my “nope” day, trying desperately to write something and failing. But after heading to the Walk the Moon concert at the Fillmore here in Charlotte, I came back ready to write my face off. Seeing other people filled with energy and doing what they love is contagious.
- Read something inspiring: Whether it’s a self-help book, a biography about someone who’s done something amazing, or just a book that you think is particularly well-written, I always find that reading something that leaves you impressed helps to trigger creativity.
- Clean up your space: When I’ve got clothes that need to be put away and dust gathering everywhere, I feel stress creeping up. Taking 10 or 20 minutes to clean up gives me a sunnier outlook on life.
- Pay for relaxation: This is so stupid and I know it, but I’ve been stressed about my Halloween costume. I hate spending money on something I’ll wear once, but the idea of having to run around to thrift stores to get something together was causing me anxiety, especially with my crazy travel schedule. Finally I decided to suck it up and buy my costume online. I’m able to check that off the list and focus my energy on something more important. If you’re able to spend a little bit of money to help relieve stress, do it. If you don’t have time to keep your house clean, pay a cleaning service to come in once a month. Small expenses that bring major peace of mind are always worth it.
- Do one tiny thing: Sometimes I get into a rut when I have a lot on my “to do” list and am overtired. In those instances, I find that doing even one small task can help to get positive momentum going. Make one phone call you need to make or send one invoice and you may feel inspired to keep going.
Do you have any tricks you use to help break yourself out of a rut? I’d love to hear about them. Share them with me in the comments!