love being productive. I’m one of those people that likes to get things done. I enjoy being in the thick of my work and knowing that I’m making things happen and I feel an intense sense of empowerment when I accomplish a goal. It’s that rush that I get when I’ve tackled something major, something important… something worthwhile.
If I’m being honest, I’m a little different. I don’t work well under duress, under someone else’s thumb or on someone else’s schedule. I’m not a 9-5’er. Not by nature, not by choice.
For me, productivity starts with creative freedom, a positive state of mind and the right environment. The latter, can do wonders for my mindset; because, I’m most focused when I’m organized, surrounded by light and beauty and I’m able to disconnect from the ‘noise’. It’s kind of like being in my own world. When I’m inspired, energized and excited, I’m at my very best, completely unstoppable! It’s awesome.
Now, the flip side.
There are times that I find myself at the polar opposite: Everything is foggy and scattered, and I can’t quite pull it together. Not even my to-do list can keep me on point. It’s times like this that I find myself oversleeping, bingeing on Netflix or trolling FaceBook and SnapChat… for hours at a time. Completely unproductive, I know, but I’m sure I’m not the only one.
Have you found yourself at a loss for where your time went? Sometimes you just end up in a mental and emotional funk, to the point that you have a hard time executing. You are not alone, and your feelings are not uncommon.
Let’s be real, we all find ourselves stuck from time to time, some more often than others. It can creep up on us and we don’t always realize what’s happening. Spending days unfocused and unproductive, being stagnant. Just know that your mental slump is often a result of becoming a victim of your daily routine.
Think about it: your regular schedule can become just that… regular!
Your days can start to feel uninspired, boring and automated. And, until now, you may not have noticed that your days, weeks and months have become predictable and quite honestly, boring. Now that your eyes are open and you’re able to recognize what’s happening, you’ve won now that you’re aware that something needs to change, you’re already a step ahead.
It’s time for you to get unstuck!
Here are my top three steps to getting unstuck:
First, get out of your comfort zone.
Your comfort zone is… well, comforting. It’s familiar, uneventful, and routine. It keeps you small and insignificant. Get as far away from it as you can. Don’t worry, changing things up doesn’t have to be life-altering or drastic. Start small, make a goal to do something different consistently for 7 days. Whether your focus is career, home or social, your initial step could simply be reading a non-fiction book, starting a new exercise regimen, or cooking instead of take-out. The benefits may surprise you. Because, whenever you add something new to your daily routine you throw a curve-ball to stagnation, something has changed and now your mind starts to think of other ways to improve. A good example of this is when you successfully make a recipe that found on Pinterest, you immediately start thinking of all the other dishes that you would like to make. The same principle applies to getting out of your comfort zone – as you introduce new experiences and change your environment, you’ll want more.
Second, stop negative thinking.
Life experiences can keep us imprisoned in our thoughts. Pay attention, notice when you have limiting thoughts creeping in. For example: Have you been thinking: “I’m not going to try that, because the last time I tried something new it didn’t work for me? Or telling yourself: “I really want to do XYZ, but I don’t have the personality for it”? Or even, “I can’t do that, I just don’t have the money for it”. Each of these statements is just a representation of how you can limit yourself and of how you can actually talk yourself out of something before you even get started.
Last, switch it up.
Remember how I said that environment is important to my creative process? This could also be the case for you. Maybe it’s time to boost the energy of a particular room, by repositioning the furniture or adding some accessories. Or you need to add a little happiness to your work space. This method works there too, grab a small bouquet of flowers each week or add something new to brighten your desk (i.e.: a new picture frame, a coffee mug or a candle). I know it all sounds simple. It is! It’s easy to ignore the power of the areas that you spend the most time in, but it’s important to create spaces that boost your mood and productivity.
I’ve learned that it doesn’t take much to get yourself out of a funk. But the only person that can do it is you. So, no matter how small these changes may seem, DO THEM – and go from being stuck to being inspired!