I’ve had the most downward-spiral / fell-off-bandwagon / feel-like-I-need-to-start-over week ever. Okay, maybe not ever, but it’s been pretty bad. Lack of exercising, lack of working out, too many cookies, not enough water, and so on. Last night I was thinking about how bad this week has been and how exhausted I am and trying to figure out what the heck I can do to get out of this rut that I seem to be in this week. It’s like I have something that I need to do to leave this place I’m in, but I can’t figure out what it is or how to do it right now. And, then it hit me: I need to treat “it” like something I have to end a relationship with – a lover, if you will. I need to break up with my bad habits and overall crappy lull I’m in right now. And then the song shot into my head – you know the one I’m talking about, by Paul Simon:
Okay, that’s a cover of it from the Muppet Show but it seemed appropriate considering comments in the media of late regarding Muppets, Sesame Street, PBS, etc. 🙂
Granted, the song doesn’t quite fit my situation completely since I’m not really having an affair nor am I trying to leave my marriage, but I like it regardless so I’m going to stick with the metaphor. Therefore, I give you 17 Ways to Leave Your Lover; or, How to Get Out of Your Damn Rut and Move Forward (meliastyle):
17. Call a friend. No really, like RIGHT NOW
I think that talking with a friend is a great idea because first of all, friends do pretty darn well in the making you feel better arena. Plus, it helps to spend time thinking about other people’s lives and solving their problems rather than focusing on your own.
16. Tell your accountability partner. Don’t have one? See #15.
Yep. Gotta call him/her and admit it. For me, simply the dread of having to tell him that I didn’t workout today is enough on most days to make me get my butt out of the house and do it!
15. Get an accountability partner.
Okay, so you must get one of these. I actually have a couple. And you can’t make any excuses like “no one else I know is trying to lose weight” or “no one lives around me and can run with me” or some other crap like that. I have accountability partners who live literally on the same the street as I do (granted, it’s up a few blocks), and partners who live freaking far away like in Chicago and in Afghanistan. Your accountability partner can be someone who works out with you or checks in on you or lets you vent about your concerns and encourages you along the way.
I freaking love coloring. And, it’s a stress reliever. Don’t believe me? Check out mandala coloring pages on the internet sometime. Mandalas are very spiritual and can be used for meditation and focusing. Good stuff.
13. Write in a journal about why you started this journey to begin with
This works pretty well for me – whenever I start to “lose my way”, I write about it in a journal. I have both a word document I use to write in and the old traditional paper variety as well. Depending on my mood, I either sit down to type or write in longhand in the print journal. It’s a good method to remind yourself what’s important.
12. Make a list of the accomplishments you’ve done so far – nothing is too small.
For real – list everything you accomplished that day, week, month, whatever. Doesn’t matter if it’s “got up out of bed” or “ran 3 miles” – they all count! This will help you remember you’re not a complete failure (which is how I often feel when I’m in these slumps).
11. Take your (or a friend’s) dog for a walk.
How can you not totally enjoy watching your dog freak out in joy when she sees her leash? Or while she’s on a walk with you and tries to catch a squirrel? Or bird? Or leaf? You get out of the house and she gets out of the house and you both get fresh air and it’s super great.
10. Laugh your ass off (this may or may not need to involve others).
This is absolutely the best thing ever. Laughter truly is the best medicine. Truly. Do it – do it until you’re crying tears of joy you’re laughing so hard.
9. Ride your bike somewhere. Anywhere.
Even though I’m in my *cough* 30somethings, I feel like a 12-year-old girl when I ride my bike. Wind in your face, flying by the trees, big smile on your face. You can’t beat that. Well, I think if you had all of that AND a bell on your bike, that would be even better.
8. Facebook a friend whom you cannot call for any other reason
Not all of my friends answer phone calls (you know who you are) and some I can only chat via FB messages – and that’s okay. We all have our own preferred modes of communication. So if you can’t call or text a friend, get on FB and look at their silly photos, write them a message, and say hello.
For those of you whom I have not graced with my awesome singing, you should know that I’m practically tone deaf. And I don’t care. I still sing on top of my lungs. And it rocks. You must be careful in your song selection however – belting out Everybody Hurts does not always a good day make.
6. Dance around your house while cleaning something. And singing.
I recommend this above singing because it’s got all the benefits of singing, plus shit is getting cleaned in your house. Extra bonus. My recommendation:
5. Get outside. Even if it’s just to read something while sitting on the porch.
I’m fortunate because I have both a front porch and a back deck to hang out on – I like the front porch because I can work or read while watching the people walk or drive by the house. And Cleo the super dog loves it too. Ah, outside fresh air.
4. Take a moment to understand that you can’t be perfect all the time (this one is pretty hard).
Sigh. It’s hard to admit that you can’t do it all perfectly all the time. But we’re only human and this is a good realization to have – one that I frequently need to remind myself. It’s hard, but it’s good.
3. List three things you love about yourself (this one can be pretty hard too sometimes).
OMG> I dislike this one SO much. It’s asinine hard to do this sometimes. And then I’ve been known to even cheat and say “I love that I picked such amazing friends” which isn’t really a solid “love yourself” comment. So then I make myself do it again and again until I get it right (which is kinda funny, considering #4).
2. Watch ridiculous TV show – but only for one hour!
I can’t begin to tell you how nice it is to just let yourself zone out into some craptastic TV show. It’s good downtime – but you have to limit yourself or otherwise you’ll have wasted an entire freaking day to the marathon of Flavor Flav’s Flavor of Love reality show. And that’s never a good thing.
1. Make yourself go running
Okay, okay, this is easier said than done but honestly, if I’m really stressing and having a horrible day, nothing – and I mean nothing – makes me feel better than running. I run until it hurts, and then keep running until it stops. If I can get myself out the damn door, so much in life is better.
So, there you go: melia’s super awesome list of ways to get out of your rut and leave your lover, or bad habit, whatever. 🙂