How to Break Out of a Rut
If I'm being honest, it has been so difficult for me to be a functioning human being for the last few months. I was unemployed, depressed, and could barely bring myself to get out of bed, let alone look for a job or have a social life. Even on days when the sun was shining and everyone else was up and about their lives, I just wanted to stay in bed and watch mindless tv to make me forget about my unhappiness (especially during the cold winter months). However, one day some switch hidden deep down in my mind flipped and I knew I needed to make a change. I can't say it enough that my mantra for 2018 has been and will continue to be "Prioritize Happiness", and I believe everyone else should follow suit. I have made more progress in the last two weeks than I have in the last four months. But that isn't to say I don't still have some bad days, which is why I'm sharing with you the ways I break myself out of a rut and convince myself to get going again.
LET THE SUN SHINE IN
Recently, I have learned to truly appreciate sunny days. During the winter months, we get very few of them, and that makes it tough to motivate yourself to get out of bed. You wake up and it's still dark out or there's snow on the ground, but your bed is so warm and cozy. Yah, I get it. But with spring in full force and summer just around the corner, it has been much brighter and sunnier in Toronto. Even on mornings when I just want to lounge around for a few extra minutes, opening the blinds or even our sliding door to let the fresh air in really helps me to feel more awake and energized. It forces me to remember that there's a whole world around me out there to explore and gives me hope that today will be a good day.
CELEBRATE THE SMALL VICTORIES
I have to give credit to Adrian on this one because he's the one who taught me to do this. Being grateful is extremely important, but sometimes when you're having a bad day, it's tough to remember all the good things you have going for you. Instead of "counting my blessings", I celebrate the small victories that I have achieved. It can be as simple as getting out of bed to make myself a coffee or waking up before 1pm.. (oops), but by celebrating even the smallest of things I can learn to pride myself on making any amount of progress. After you've celebrated those small things for long enough, you'll be able to get to the point of celebrating bigger things like handing out 12 different resumes and cover letters over the span of two days (yes, I did that, and yes, it was hard for me).
GIVE YOURSELF TIME
Over the last few months, this has been the absolute most difficult thing for me to do. I'd wake up, check my social media, and see every single one of my friends and family making huge headway with their lives. Some were getting engaged, some were having babies (I have a new baby cousin and she's a total squish!), and 95% of my university colleagues were snagging jobs left right and centre! Or at least it seemed that way.. but after further research and digging, it turned out that some had started minimum wage jobs, and some were as equally unemployed as I was! So, my biggest take away was that everyone is moving at their own pace and that is OK. You live your life on your own timeline, and sometimes you just have to remember to stay in your own lane. The hardest challenge for me to overcome has been to stop comparing myself to other people. Who cares that I'm 22 and don't have a job in my field yet? Surely not the people who are ALSO 22 and DO have jobs in their field. There is not one person in your life that should make you feel bad about your timeline, not even yourself. You just have to give yourself the time you need to transition into productivity. For some people, it's 2 days, for others, it's 2 years. GIVE. IT. TIME.
Whenever I'm having a bad day, my mum always reminds me that we all have to share the good days. If you're having a bad day, it just means that it's someone else's turn to have a good day, and that your turn will come about again! Not all days can be good and not all days will be bad, so don't forget that sometimes it's ok to have a bad day. I still like to spend entire days in my pyjamas, sleeping and eating and watching tv, but I also remember that that can't be my everyday anymore. I found a job that I am over-the-moon about (one that makes me happy) , and I have responsibilities that I have to face now that I have graduated and am in the real world. Being an adult is hard, but we're all still learning. Above all, value your mental health and do everything in your power to care for yourself. And remember to prioritize happiness with me!
What do you do to break yourself out of a rut? How do you stay positive? Share your thoughts with me in the comments!