Advertising
Advertising

5 Ways to Get out of a Funk

5 Ways to Get out of a Funk

Do you have big dreams, but find yourself struggling to get out of bed some days? You might be in a funk. The thing is, acknowledging that you’re not happy is half the battle. Despite what most people think, getting stuck in a funk doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Being sad is not a sign of weakness — it’s a sign that there’s room for growth.

The next time you get stuck in a funk, don’t get mad at yourself. Embrace the truth, which is that it’s a blessing in disguise.

1. Acknowledge that it’s up to you to fix it.

When things don’t go your way, it’s easy to put the blame on other people and outside factors.

“My coworker keeps interfering.”
“I always get selected last.”
“I can never catch a break.”

Recently a good friend of mine and I were catching up over dinner. She mentioned how long she’s been struggling to get a job. Interview after interview, and still no callbacks. The reason? She speculated that it’s because she’s overqualified. We could have spent the entire dinner speculating over why. But the “why” isn’t the question we should be asking. It’s “what.” In this case, “What am I doing wrong and what can I do better at?” Only then, by acknowledging there’s room for her own improvement, can we talk about ways she may be able to do things differently.

No matter the situation, you have two choices: you can either spend your time making excuses or acknowledge responsibility and find solutions. You can’t do both.

Advertising

2. Disconnect from your norm.

Wake up. Eat. Commute. Work. Eat. Work. Commute. Eat. Sleep.

Chances are you follow an iteration of this same schedule. Oftentimes, we forget that we’re humans and not robots, designed to do one thing over and over again. If you find your days all beginning to look the same, you’re susceptible to falling into a rut.

Incorporating change in small ways can do wonders. Switch up your morning routine. Change elements of your diet. Try a new hobby. Take a different route to work. Change up your social media profile. All of these simple changes can help you get out of a funk.

“The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.”

—Albert Einstein

3. Find positive people to be around.

When you become an adult, you take on the responsibility for your own actions and choices. This includes the food you eat, and the types of people you choose to hang out with. If you eat bad food, it’ll impact your health negatively. The same goes if you hang around negative people. They will inevitably rub off on you.

Advertising

“I think it’s important to get your surroundings as well as yourself into a positive state — meaning surround yourself with positive people, not the kind who are negative and jealous of everything you do.”

—Heidi Klum

While on a visit to my mom’s, she told me a story about one of her neighbors. She mentioned that the neighbor has been really struggling lately, and has been calling and visiting more often to talk, sometimes at really late hours. I probed further, and my Mom said that she talks about her illnesses, lack of money because she can’t work and a bad relationship she’s in. However when my mom tries to offer solutions or even talk about her own life, the neighbor would get defensive and cut her off right away. The neighbor even called her rude for it.

Although my mom feels like she’s being a shoulder to cry on, this lady is a classic case of being an emotional vampire. She prays on people who are willing to listen, to fuel her own relentless need for negativity.

There are many reasons why you should avoid negative people, but most importantly, recognize that negative thinking is a chosen mindset. If you spend your time with negative people, realize that they’ve made a conscious choice to put excuses above solutions. Remember: it’s their decision not yours. You should decide who to hang out with to become the best version of yourself.

4. Stop fighting reality.

Just because something happens that we don’t like doesn’t mean it wasn’t supposed to happen or that you can’t turn the situation into a positive one. If you put yourself into a mindset that you are exactly where you need to be. Your mindset shifts from reactive to active.

Advertising

You have to make a consciousnesses decide whether you want to spend your time reveling in the past, fussing over future problems that haven’t happened yet, or enjoy the journey that is today and now.

“Sometimes when you’ve had a long series of disappointing things happen, you can get into the very bad habit of just expecting more of what you’ve already had.”

—Joyce Meyer

No matter what you decide, the world continues to spin through space at 1,040 mph and your time on the planet continues to count down. Make good use of it.

5. Map your success.

If you’ve ever been on a trip where your GPS ran out of battery or you forgot your map altogether, you know how important navigational tools are. The same goes for goals in your own life. Without a direction in mind, you’ll end up going in circles.

One of my biggest life lessons came to realization when I was deeply unhappy. I was a world traveler. I went to all the coolest parties. I had plenty of friends. But I was the furthest thing from happy. It was hard to wake up because everyday felt the same. I was literally in my biggest funk. Reality finally hit me that I tied my happiness to a world I let others control. I lived on a whim and built my life’s foundation on everyone else’s dreams.

Advertising

It took me reaching my unhappiest to recognize I was headed in the wrong direction.

Although starting from square one (rock bottom) was one of the toughest decisions I made, it gave me the opportunity to realize that I have goals and I’m capable to reaching them, including become a writer. It’s my dream to write for LifeHack.org, and here I am!

Without a map, you are simply reacting to road signs and conditions. If my own journey taught me anything, it’s that I didn’t know what my goals and dreams were until I set a course and ended up hating where I arrived. Knowing what you don’t want is as fruitful as knowing what you want. Where are you headed next to reach your goals?

Featured photo credit: snapwiresnaps.tumblr.com via pexels.com

More by this author

5 Ways to Get out of a Funk Feeling overwhelmed? 5 Things You Can Do When You Feel Overwhelmed Positive music Top 5 Benefits of Listening to Positive Music How To Avoid Gaining Weight When Traveling

Trending in Lifestyle

1 How to Get the Best Deep Sleep (And Why It’s Important) 2 How to Practice Meditation for Anxiety and Stress Relief 3 How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators 4 12 Sad Things That You Should Learn to Be Grateful For Instead 5 7 Morning Rituals to Empower Your Day And Change Your Life

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

Advertising

  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

Advertising

Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

Advertising

As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

Advertising

9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

Read Next