Updated: Jul 26
From time to time, each of us will find ourselves in a rut of boredom and disinterest. We seem to lose our zest for life and feel tired, irritable, and unmotivated. We want to hide under the covers rather than face the day. Perhaps you're feeling overwhelmed by work, or discouraged by what you see happening in the world, or just bored with the routine of your daily life.
You are not alone. We all go through periods like this at some point. The good news is that we can do something about it. Here are some tips to help break out of the monotony and feel excited about life again:
1) Take some "Time Out"
Long-term stress can wear us down and zap any enthusiasm we have left. Before doing anything else, take a few minutes to breathe and just BE. Empty your mind of all stress and worry. This takes practice, but don't give up! As thoughts come into your mind, gently push them back out and continue to keep your mind empty and calm. Take slow, deep breaths and let all your muscles relax. Sit quietly and recharge your batteries. Try to do this daily, or even twice daily (morning and night).
We need quiet time as much as we need anything else in life. Give yourself the gift of inner peace.
2) Get Inspired
Read something motivational, inspirational, or uplifting. Look at some beautiful nature photos or read something funny. Consciously move your thoughts to a more positive place. Focusing on nothing but work and our daily responsibilities in life can leave us feeling uninspired. It's easy to turn it around if we want to. We must seek out things that will lift our spirits and our moods. Make it a point to laugh, be happy, joyful, and lighthearted each day. Don't wait for inspiration to come knocking on your door, go out and find it, or create it.
Think back to some cherished or touching memories. Write them in a journal so you can go back and read them when you're feeling down.
3) Get Excited!
Think about the things you have planned for the day and recall the enthusiasm you once felt for them. When we first begin a new project, or start a new job, we are excited about the possibilities and anxious to get going. Over time, we can lose that enthusiasm for any number of reasons. Go back in time for a moment, and think about what got you so excited in the first place. What made your heart beat a little faster? Recapture that feeling and hang on to it! Even if what you're doing at this moment isn't anything to be really excited about, at least think of some positive benefits to doing it. For example, list the ways they will benefit your children, your spouse, yourself, your job, or your home. Identify the payoff and focus on that. Even mundane tasks have some benefits.
Sometimes it's just a matter of switching our mindset to see the positive side. It's all about perspective.
4) Take Baby Steps
Sometimes the hardest part is getting started. A project can seem so enormous that we dread the thought of all the time and energy we'd have to consume. Instead of overwhelming yourself, start small. Set a timer for 15 minutes and just start working on it. Allow yourself to stop after 15 minutes if you really want to. But most often, once we start working on something, we won't want to stop. Don't focus on the big picture, look at the smaller details and take them on one at a time.
Any large task will be manageable once we break it down into smaller steps.
5) Care for Your Body
Sometimes our fatigue is caused by physical deficiencies, not anything mental. Be sure you are getting enough rest, eating food that nourishes your body, drinking enough water, getting enough exercise, etc. Especially when we're very busy, we tend to grab the quickest, easiest meals, which aren't always the best choice for our bodies. Eating a lot of high processed foods and sugar is like putting watered-down gasoline into our cars. For our cars to run smoothly, we need to maintain them properly, and so it is with our bodies. Remember, the body is the vehicle for the mind and soul!
Finally, remember to reward yourself from time to time, and be gentle with yourself! There will always be things that "need" to be done. But some of us take on way more than we can handle, and our lives turn into a grind because of it. Try to eliminate the things that don't serve you well or truly don't bring you joy; or at least minimize the time you spend on them. Do what you can, and let the rest go. Or ask for help. Don't feel you have to do everything yourself.
Remember that motivation, just like happiness, is something we choose. We may need to give ourselves a little push at the beginning, but once we get into the right mindset, it gets easier to stay there if we choose to.
Philippians 4:13, Isaiah 40:31, 1 Peter 5:7, Matthew 11:28, Romans 15:13, Psalm 46:1, Lamentations 3:22-23
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