If you're feeling like you're stuck in a rut do not worry. We all have our moments, you're never stuck, and there are things you can do, on any given day, to turn the momentum around.
This is not a post to disregard or invalidate whatever you may be feeling, but rather to encourage you not to get stuck there and keep doing your best to stay bright and optimistic.
Ready to turn things around?
Try any one of the 10 things below to feel a little lighter and brighter and get yourself out of a funk:
1. Walk it Out
Sometimes you just need to move your body, to get stagnant energy that can be clouding your body and mind to move. Walking is a simple yet profound way to bring some vitality back to your being. Go walk somewhere new for an added bonus and to avoid falling into autopilot. Even 10 - 30 minutes can be enough.
2. Talk to Someone You Love Honestly
It's often easier to hide away and pretend like everything is jolly when you're feeling low. While there is no use in wallowing away in pity, there is power and bravery in vulnerability and telling someone that you've been having a harder than usual time without feeling ashamed about it. Open, honest sharing can be a really useful reminder that we're all human and have challenges, and that you're not alone. It's common to feel more connected and supported after opening up.
3. Music is Medicine
Indulge in sound. If you're feeling low, play your music loud. Give yourself whichever kind of genre you need. Sad music has a time and place. Rap can give you a confidence boost. Meditation and ambient music can help everything settle. And dance music can get your blood pumping and make you want to dance around. Enjoy!
4. Go for a Drive
Drive for the sake of driving. You can of course combine this with tip #3 for a feel-good experience to clear your head. Sometimes when we feel stuck, it can be a matter of feeling stuck geographically also. Drive somewhere, open the windows, put on music or a podcast you love, and enjoy the scenery.
5. Go into Nature
Sometimes the answers lie in nature. Go somewhere you can immerse yourself in the beauty of the natural world to slow and quiet down for a moment.
Take a moment to pause, and ask for the solutions and breakthroughs that you're wanting, while you're somewhere beautiful. Nature and moments of reflection can bring solace and a sense of connection and support.
Often it's easier to look outwards to solve problems that are causing us trouble. Go within through meditation, and you might find some useful answers. The idea behind meditation is that if we get our thoughts into a better place, the benefits will ripple outwards into our lives.
Writing things down can bring needed clarity. Journaling doesn't have to be structured but it can be if preferred. Write about what you've been feeling, how you want to feel, or anything that feels unresolved. You can also write letters to people you love also.
Similar to #1, movement is healing and sometimes cardio is especially powerful. It's hard to be caught up in negative thoughts or emotions when your heart is beating and your body is charging full steam ahead. Making yourself exercise until you sweat, in various forms, is one of the easiest ways to boost endorphins and boost your mood in the process.
9. Get Artistic & Make Something
Paint, collage, take photos, do something you love to do or want to learn how to do. Using your hands and getting creative is one of the easiest ways to get out of your head and can be uplifting to your entire well-being. Children are happy to play and create endlessly, with no bigger goal in mind than to enjoy the process. As adults, it can be easy not to go there as frequently, but the creative flow is one of the best places to be. Let yourself there more often, simply for the sake of creating, without taking yourself too seriously or putting pressure on yourself to create masterpieces. Explore until you find artistic mediums that make you feel good and you can always browse the internet for endless instructional videos and ideas.
"You're only one yoga class away from a good mood."-unknown. This is usually true. Almost all yoga classes have you feeling better at the end than you did at the beginning. If you've been feeling low it can sometimes be harder to show up on your mat but the rewards are worth it.
Showing up is sometimes the hardest thing you'll do in the class, but being able to practice gentle styles of yoga online from your home to make it easier than ever.
Poses in particular that are uplifting, are all inversions (including partial inversions like Forward Fold or Downward Facing Dog). and backbends, which are are beneficial if you're feeling low on energy or sad. They're uplifting and energizing.
11. Clean or Re-Decorate Your Space
Beautify your space, and clear your clutter. Feng Shui is about how your external living space is a reflection of your inner state of well-being and vice versa. It's all connected. If you're feeling scattered, your space will look and feel scattered (and walking into a scattered place can make you feel that way also).
Simplify and beautify your space, to feel better internally. Throw out things you don't need, or never use, and you might feel lighter. Feng Shui Your Life and The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up are two books on this subject that I highly recommend.
12. Buy Yourself a Present
Don't retail therapy your way out of uncomfortable feelings, but once in a while, getting yourself something you don't need, but that brings joy, is worth it and can give you a boost. Treat yourself! You're worth it.
13. Stop Complaining
If you've felt stuck in a rut, it can be easy for some to hide, but for others, it can be easier to dwell on it and speak constantly about why you're dissatisfied with everyone you encounter. Challenge yourself, to not complain for one week, and see how your life changes, even subtly.
14. Read a Good Book
Endless social media browsing is actually being proven to increase anxiety while reading has been shown to calm humans down. Go find a good book to read and give your mind a breather that comes from getting lost in a good book.
If you're been out of reading regularly for a while, look around for a book that you're excited to dive into. Sometimes, getting into one book you cannot put down, is all that it takes to get back into reading regularly.
15. Eat Cleaner
If you're eating nothing but garbage, you're going to feel like garbage. It's pretty simple when we think about it, but depending on where you live, eating processed food all of the time is sadly the norm and easier to do than eat healthy, in many places. You don't have to transform your diet altogether or overnight, but adding some simple foods that grow from the earth into your diet, like fruits and vegetables, can go a long way, into giving your body the nutrients you need to feel good.
Make one simple smoothie a day. There are many excellent, and easy smoothie recipes here from the brilliant ladies from the Conscious Cleanse.
Remember, you're never stuck. There are actions you can take each and every day to give yourself a boost. Look forwards, not back, and experiment with this list until you find the things that work best for you.
By Keith Allen
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