One of the hardest things is getting back in the game. Whether it be after a failure, trauma, life changing event, heartbreak or wave of just down straight laziness… or better yet, a rut -lack of motivation, inspiration, depression, fear and doubt can consume us so quickly that we don’t even notice… don’t even see it coming.
And by the time we do, we are so deeply entangled in it that it can be hard to know where to start… where to begin to start feeling like yourself again, to get that sprang back in your step.
The other day I found myself offering up excuses to relax when I haven’t been partially productive. Entering a vicious cycle, where nothing gets done and justification becomes second nature.
Winter makes it relatively easy to justify doing nothing, the cold naturally makes us want to hibernate and before you know it, you aren’t doing half of what you committed too… choosing comfortable and cozy over all else.
The longer we remain in this space, the easier it becomes to stay exact where we are and do nothing becoming farther away from accomplishing anything. And no matter how much you begin to set goals and deadlines to help motivate productivity, you don’t stick to them as you continue to offer up excuses. Hence the rut!
I have found myself in that space here and there in past, and especially throughout the winter months. And it’s been a battle to get myself moving once I have pressed pause, remaining stagnant for some time can have restarting feeling next to impossible.
So what I have done is taken a moment to figure out what I need to do to press play, oiling up the wheels and setting things in motion… a reboot. I’m going to share some of the techniques I have implemented that have helped me in this instances of failed productivity… techniques that have guided me out of the rut.
First question to ask yourself is:
what is distracting you?
Is it Netflix? Is it your sleeping patterns? Is it self-love? Lack of interest? Over indulgence? What has you avoiding?? Finding out the answer to this particular question may require some meditation. As majority of the time, our avoidance stems deeper than what is on the surface. It is embedded into our subconscious.
Usually having something to do with satisfaction, either the lack or abundance of comfort, which has us feeding into our excuses. But if meditation isn’t your thing, or you tried and it just didn’t help with uncovering the reason why, make it a point to catch yourself in your excuses.
Focus on your language
What is it you are telling yourself? Too tired? Exhausted? Tomorrow? Need a break? Time for yourself? In what form are your excuses being made? Again meditation will definitely help find out the root cause, but if you look at language in your justifications, it can most definitely reveal what has you stuck in the rut.
Now it isn’t enough to merely identify what has you stuck, we actually need to do something about it. This is the hardest part of it all, it is easy to identify what has you stuck, but to actually do something about… to set yourself in motion is where the difficultly lies. It is a whole other ball game.
The interesting part about it is that pressing reboot is simpler than we think, hard but simple. Because in actuality, the only thing we have to do is to start doing… take action. Once we start taking action, we make it habitual and once it is habitual it has become a routine, essentially getting you out of the rut.
So yes, it is simple, but it is forcing the habit to form that isn’t so easy. Because today you might feel extremely motivated, but tomorrow not so much, tomorrow you may offer up the excuse that you did so much yesterday you can take it easy today. Whatever you do, DON’T DO IT!!
GET YOURSELF BUSY
Let’s say you don’t have anything to really do, find something, something you have been meaning to do, but haven’t for whatever reason. Maybe it is too tedious or not of high importance, maybe it is something as simple as doing laundry, organizing your space, or finishing an old project. Push yourself to keep busy and stay busy.
MAKE THE COMMITMENT
Once you commit to yourself that you really want out of the rut by enforcing the importance of keeping busy, start to set deadlines and stick to those commitments. Even if you don’t feel like do something, try to get it done or at least put some effort toward it.
Because not everything we do, we want to do, some things we need to do… and those vary things are what will keep us on track, moving further away from our rut.
Make sure to reward yourself when completing those more tedious tasks, take a break, but be sure it is just a break and the next day you are right back to smashing another task.
BE DISCIPLINED WITH YOURSELF
Be stern to the point, you set a schedule and you become disappointed when not productive, when not actively accomplishing something. In addition to that is knowing what you need to do. Are you working toward something? Do you have an ongoing project? Goals in mind? If not, then set small tasks. But if you do, then…
MAP IT OUT
More often than not, we don’t have a clear vision on what we want. Our minds are everywhere and everything just looks extremely overwhelming. So map it out, make a vision board and remind yourself everyday of its existence.
You could even create a mini checklist of daily tasks as a tool to keep your motivation in check. There is something about ticking off a checklist that creates a sense of satisfaction.
Regardless of whether it’s a vision board or checklist, either one will help you be consciously aware of your goals; including your final destination, which will naturally inspire you and organically motivate you.
KEEP IT GOING
So even if you aren’t feeling as inclined to be productive today as you were the day prior, then make it a point to push yourself to still do something, even if it is a simple little task, get something done! Then find something else to do, and keep going.
Build slowly, one task today, two tomorrow and so on. This will begin to consciously enforce and re-enforce productivity without it becoming overwhelming.
hold yourself accountable
Most definitely one of the most importance points of all is to not deceive yourself. Be honest with yourself regarding the effort that is required versus that which you are putting in. Because this is the thing that will keep you from fall down the rabbit hole again.
If you aren’t honest with yourself, the excuses will begin to pour once again. So not only do you have to enforce the importance of discipline, you must uphold authenticity on your effectiveness, or else none of this will work.