So maybe you’re six weeks into something new and things are starting to gel. Or, it’s been a year since you lost your spouse. Now you’re beginning to wonder what is next.
I remember being newly single in college and not knowing what to do. Everything changed in an instant. I didn’t want to do much. Mostly, I thought about diving into the Saranac River and seeing how long I could hold my breath. In retrospect, I just wanted to be numb to what was going on. Ever feel that way?
Wanting to feel better is a natural tendency, however it’s not the only option. Pretty soon, your comfort zone gets uncomfortable. Stay inside the box for too long and you’ll suffocate.
It’s counter intuitive, but life begins outside your comfort zone. Be it a new job, circumstances, challenges…illness. There’s just something about embracing a challenge that is rewarding.
Years ago I met a guy in his eighties who was still taking college classes. “I’m a life-long learner,” he said. We all should be. In the words of Bob Dylan, “He who is not living is dying.”
Here are some things you can do if you’re stuck in a rut.
Start something new. It’s called a sigmoid curve. Google it. When you reach the top of the learning curve and start declining, it’s time to start climbing again. Challenge yourself in a new way. Rewrite your business plan. Learn Greek or Hebrew. Offer a new service. Start a new business or stream of income. But whatever you do, start something new!
Find a new way To travel to work. To spend time with your mate. To spend money. To save. To improve your diet. To study the bible. To meet people. To earn a living. To have fun. To network. To grow. To challenge yourself. To donate. To learn. To write. You get the idea!
Meet new people. New people bring new perspectives. They teach you new things and allow you to teach them. It’s a give and take kind of thing. What kind of people do you need to meet to accomplish your goals? A guy I just met used to be a salesman. He would go to shoe stores and buy shoes that had damaged boxes or minor blemishes and give them to potential clients. He’d attach a note that said “I’ll do anything to get my foot in the door.” I wouldn’t have learned that unless I took the time to meet and learn from him. Meet new people It will change your life.
Develop a new mindset. Negativity gets us nowhere. Write down some affirmations and review them daily. Stop letting the weather or circumstances dictate the quality of your life. Decide to be content with today, not this Friday or next year when you have your dream job. Those kinds of tomorrow’s never come. Learn to be content no matter where you are, Paul was. Capture your thoughts in a journal. Meditate daily- it doesn’t have to be for hours. Start out for a minute or ten a day. During that time focus on shutting out all distractions. Occasionally focus on a the excellent things in your life and world.
Of course these are only some ideas to get you started. Be creative. Years ago I decided to take a leave of absence from my steady job to work at a summer camp. One of the best decisions I ever made. Had two incredible summers! Summer’s here. So what are you going to do about it?