I Lost My Mojo!
I was in a rut and this is what I did to get my groove back on!
Lethargic, uninspired, flat, restless, and numb are some of the words I use to describe being in a rut. And trust me, I know, because recently, I found myself stuck in a rut.
Things piled up over time. I was frustrated at work. My husband was out of town. We’re active in the sailing community and with racing season over, I was missing my time on the water. I also had a falling out with some girlfriends that had left me reeling. And, to make matters even worse, I was consuming way too much news. I love to write and I was still writing. But under all that stress, writing became more of a chore than my creative outlet.
I had lost my mojo.
And I wanted it back!
A rut is a habit. The formal definition is “a pattern of behavior that has become dull and unproductive but is hard to change.” The thing is, I don’t think it has to be that hard to break all habits. Sometimes the smallest actions can create big changes.
Here are some things that helped me get out of my rut. If any of this sounds familiar, you might want to give them a try.
Cry. You know the saying, have a good cry? There’s more to that than you might think. According to Judith Orloff, MD. “tears are your body’s release valve for stress, sadness, grief, anxiety, and frustration.” Emotional tears contain stress hormones and crying not only releases stress and toxins, but will also stimulate the production of “feel good hormones” — endorphins.
Write a Gratitude List. Gratitude lowers the stress hormone cortisol. “Clinical trials indicate that the practice of gratitude can have dramatic and lasting effects in a person’s life,” said Robert A. Emmons, professor of psychology at UC Davis. “It can lower blood pressure, improve immune function and facilitate more efficient sleep.” If the only thing on your list is your cup of morning coffee, that’s okay. It’s a start and the beginning of a healthy new habit that will get easier over time.
Accept that contraction is a natural part of life. In his book Within, a Spiritual Awakening to Love and Weight Loss, Dr. Habib Sadeghi explains that the “balance of opposites is the Law of Expansion and Contraction.” You can’t expand without contraction. He uses the example of an inch worm that literally has to contract in order to expand and move forward. If you look at a rut as a period of contraction, knowing that you will eventually move into expansion, it’s easier to let go. When we fight against it, we spin our wheels and dig ourselves deeper into the mud and get stuck. Once we accept our natural periods of contraction, we will move through them with greater ease.
Turn off the news. Bad news feeds a bad mood. According to a study published by the British Journal of Psychology, the more time you spend watching negative news the more time you worry. “Bombarding people with sensationalized negativity does have genuine and real psychological effects.” Try going on a news diet. I did and it was the easiest diet I’ve ever been on!
Read a book. Bibliotherapy is “the art of using books to aid people in solving the issues they are facing”. It has been around since King Ramses ll of Egypt. He had a special chamber for his books. He called it “House of Healing for the Soul.” A good movie is helpful too, but reading is even better because you use your imagination and mind more fully when you read. You escape with the fictional characters. This could be one of the reasons the Fifty Shades of Gray series is so popular. But poetry will work too. So will inspirational books like Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic, Creating Living Beyond Fear.
Getting ‘unstuck’ isn’t as hard as you might think. Beyond these five tips there’s so much more you can do for yourself. Give just one of them a try and you just might find yourself happy, smiling and back in the juicy groove of your life before you know it!