Have you ever noticed that life isn’t always roses and rainbows? Sometimes, no matter what the heck you do, things feel like a struggle?
One of my goals for this blog in 2013 is transparency. Sure, I talk about health and nutrition and success and goals and attitude, but that doesn’t mean I have it all figured out (far from it). I don’t sit around eating steamed broccoli and chicken breasts, thinking positive thoughts 24/7. And it’s EASY to tell other people to be happy…but what happens when you look in the mirror and you’re not feeling happy yourself?
Personally, things have been tough lately. I’m not exactly sure why, but the best way of describing it is just feeling “BLAH.” I’ve been going through the motions with less emotion and less satisfaction. Maybe it’s the cold…or the gray…or the short days. Who knows? I haven’t had any traumatic life events happen and, truthfully, I’m not as concerned with diagnosing the problem as I am coming up with a solution.
So, partially inspired by the movie Austin Powers Goldmember (it was on TNT a couple nights ago), I set out to get my mojo back. Below is what I did and what I found – in 6 parts. If you’re feeling “BLAH,” I’m hoping it can help you find your mojo as well…
I’m blessed and fortunate to be surrounded by people who will tell me what I NEED to hear…not necessarily what I WANT to hear. It’s easy to surround yourself with “yes people.” I’m also well aware that I can post a self-loathing status update on Facebook at any given time and have 20 people tell me, “Yes, Scott, everything is going to be ok.”
But that’s not what I need to hear. It doesn’t help – it just makes you more comfortable in your own sadness. Sure, the close people in your life will be empathetic when you need it, but the truly SPECIAL people in your life will tell you, point blank, when you’re not acting like yourself and when you can do better. They will pull you up.
“The truly SPECIAL people in your life will tell you, point blank, when you’re not acting like yourself and when you can do better.”
2. Change Your State
Studies have shown that the simple act of smiling and laughing will immediately change your state and make you feel happier. Don’t believe me? Try it. Even if you have nothing to smile or laugh about, just do it. You’ll feel better immediately. If you feel like too much of an idiot smiling or laughing when there is no good reason to do so, cue up your favorite comedy movie. Yes, Austin Powers, Dumb and Dumber and Tommy Boy do this for me. I promise you’ll feel better afterwards.
3. Break the Pattern
If you want to know more about why we do what we do, I’d highly recommend reading the book, The Power of Habit. In short, all of our habits are based on a cue à routine à reward system. And this holds true for positive or negative habits. If there is something you want to change, you have to break the pattern. Add a new cue. Add a new ingredient to the mix. Without this, the same routines will almost certainly repeat themselves.
4. Get Started
Newton’s first law says that an object in motion stays in motion. The simple act of GETTING STARTED is often the hardest part. I’m a big believer in momentum. Just get the ball rolling and get some small wins. It doesn’t matter how small these wins are…what matters is that you’re moving forward. Remember, we’re always either progressing or regressing in life. We’re never maintaining.
5. Do What You Find Intrinsically Enjoyable
What makes you happy? I mean, really happy? If you don’t know what it is, imagine your perfect day. Anything included is probably what makes you the happiest.
When you find this, do it. Or do more of it. Sunrises, sunsets, coffee, manicures, massages, movies, plays, sports, art, working out – it really doesn’t matter. It is awfully hard to feel “BLAH” when you’re doing things that make you happy.
6. Pull Someone Else Up
No matter how sad we are or how bad our situations may seem, there is always somebody who has it worse. Yes, it is true. And I do believe that we were put on this earth to pull other people up. Give and thou shall receive. If you want to get your mojo back, help someone else find theirs. Never underestimate the power of contribution to humanity.
Lastly, remember that we’re emotional creatures. No one is happy and positive all the time. I will go through “BLAH” phases again, as will you. But life is not a dress rehearsal and we all deserve to have lives of happiness and fulfillment. The above checkpoints will help you to make this happen.