Sometimes you just find yourself in a rut. Not motivated to do much of anything. Maybe it’s the stretch of sleepless nights, work deadlines, or metro delays. Whatever the cause, it’s no bueno. And I shoot to tackle these buggers quickly so they don’t zap too much positive energy. If you‘re tired and drained, take a deep breath and enjoy one - or all - of these personal tricks:
Take a Walk Device-Free. Next time you’re feeling frustrated or dull, take a long walk. Leave the smartphone and other devices at home. Go to a nearby park and really process your surroundings... leaves on the trees, colors of the sky, smells and sounds, you get the idea. Stay in the present and take deep breaths: inhale for four counts, hold breath for seven counts, and exhale for eight counts. This will release your worries and clear the head chatter. Bonus: Do some light stretching and run through your gratitude list.
Do Something Different. Want a dose of inspiration? Try a pottery class, buy a fun cookbook or puzzle, or hit up a random exhibit or concert. Grab a buddy or go solo. Doing something novel and delightful gives me renewed energy and gets the creative juices flowing. I’ve even forged friendships while trying new activities on my own.
Do Something Familiar. Write ten simple activities that bring you joy. Many years ago I crafted a list of my own that I cut into the shape of a little cloud and placed in the back of my journal. I fondly call this list my “happiness cloud” and refer to it when I need a pick-me-up. My list includes drinking a cup of hot cocoa with marshmallows, dancing to 90’s pop music (hey there, N*SYNC) and looking through old pictures and birthday cards. These give me a warm and fuzzy feeling, just what’s needed to shake off the blah.
Find a Target. No, I’m not talking about the one-stop shop (although buying a cart of stuff you didn’t know you needed can surely bring you out of a funk). I’m talking about a cool outing or event that’ll build up excitement. When the days seem long and endless, I look a few weeks or months ahead and research a trip to take or a fancy new restaurant to try. Check out couponing websites (my favorite is LivingSocial) or local event publications for the scoop in the weeks ahead, and put something on your calendar. As the date draws closer, crafting the details will give you a surge of excitement to push through any daily stressors.
Shake it Off (Literally). Yep, moving does the mind (and body) good. And I’m all about jolting out of icky lethargy with a hot playlist and some jump-squats. Craft a playlist of your favorite tunes and hit the gym. Weight training or high-intensity interval training (like what I teach in boot camp) help me release tension, process my thoughts and a get a hit of yummy endorphins. Bonus: Write in your journal after you exercise. You’ll feel light and clear-headed.
Put simply, I’ve curated my arsenal to get restarted, reinspired, and refreshed. Next time you want to get unstuck, try one of these tips. And let the good vibes roll.