Are you in a rut? You feel like you’re coming down with something; you’re tired, listless, and a little down. This lethargy lingers for days, or even weeks, and you realize that you’re not sick—at least not physically. You’re tired of your usual routine, and you don’t feel challenged or inspired by your daily activities. You’re in a rut.
Most of us fall into a rut at some point, so don’t despair. Here are five ideas that will help you get out of your funk and back to being better than ever:
1. Learn Something New
If we’re not careful, our daily lives can become repetitive—which gets boring. If you’ve fallen into the trap of just doing the same old, same old, every day, it’s time to try something different. Learn a new skill by taking a painting class, sign up for language lessons, or check out a class at a community college. Your newfound knowledge and skills will give you a much-needed boost!
2. Create a Vision Board
Are you feeling the blahs because your life hasn’t turned out the way you’d hoped? Do you crave a fresh start? If so, it’s time to create a vision board. Find or create photos, illustrations, poetry, and quotes that inspire you, and glue them to poster board, or turn them into a screen saver on your computer. Your board will be a visual reminder that you can keep adding to. (You’ll find plenty of vision board inspiration on Pinterest.) If you dream it, you can achieve it!
3. Embrace Struggle
This is a hard one: if you are going through a rough time, try to embrace it instead of clenching your teeth, balling up your fists, and hating every minute—or escaping into bad TV and other self- destructive behavior. Look for the silver linings. Our struggles help us gain insight about ourselves, and often offer valuable lessons. By finding the positives and accepting what is happening in your life, you are allowing yourself to live to the fullest—even when it’s tough!
4. Set Goals
Many people only set goals on New Year’s eve, but you don’t have to wait. In fact, it’s better if you don’t. When things aren’t going as planned or your life is less than ideal, set some time aside to look at what’s wrong and create a plan for making things better. Don’t let problems linger too long. Think about what you’d like to be doing in five years, and begin setting the groundwork now to reach that goal.
Research has shown time and again that regular exercise is not only good for our bodies, it’s essential for our mental and emotional health. If you are in a rut, try a new workout. Start by walking or jogging around your neighborhood every day, take a kickboxing or yoga class, or join a gym. Find an activity you like, and be consistent.
When you feel underwhelmed (or overwhelmed) and lack motivation, it can take a toll on you—and on your relationships with others. Be kind to yourself—and be proactive. You deserve it.