How to Get Out of a Slump

For those who haven’t seen the movie Get Out, “the sunken place” is a reference to a place in which you have no real control over your actions. For me, the sunken place is a place eerily similar to the one I feel I am in when I am in a slump. There is so much I know I should do, so much that I know I want to do, and yet for some reason I am bound in chains to a mental cement block, keeping me from getting anything done.

Sometimes we hit places like that in life. We know that we want to be successful at something, we want to accomplish something but sometimes we forget what that something is or/and we lose the drive we need to work to obtain that something. Optimism gets replaced by doubt, doubt plants seeds of hopelessness and before you know it, you couldn’t make strides towards your goals even if you tried.

It’s always easier to fall into a slump than it is to get out of one. With patience and a tad bit of desire to escape “the sunken place” however, it is more than possible to get out and get back on track.


Relax. Productively.

No time is wasted time. So if you pity yourself because you feel like you’ve been a lazy bum- stop that way of thinking right now! If you don’t know what to do or where to go next, maybe it’s time you stay put. Rest is just as important as work and is just as productive. We are not robots. We don’t operate on batteries that never die (no matter how many energy boosting drinks we might have).

We need time to refuel and often, we refuel by relaxing. Allow yourself that time to refuel. Watch a show or movie that makes you laugh (or cry! Whichever suits your mood!). Read a book or a blog and take your mind off of your troubles that way. The idea behind relaxing productively is to allow yourself the time you need, to acquire the energy you need, to get back on your feet.

Find Things that Motivate You.

I tend to confuse things that motivate me with things that aren’t meant to offer motivation but offer steps I can take to achieve my goal. I’ve learned that there is a difference between the two. It could just be me, but I find that I am not motivated by how-to’s and guides. I am motivated by glimpses of the lifestyle I wish to have. The more I view those glimpses, whether it be through a movie or pictures, the more I want to turn those glimpses into my reality.  This is why I believe having a vision board has aided me greatly!

It’s important to find things that give you energy and make you hungry to find and fulfill your purpose. Take note of what those things are, and if you haven’t found them yet; experiment! Maybe you need to reflect on the reason you want to achieve your goal/s to feel motivated. Maybe you too need glimpses of a life with the goals you want to achieve already accomplished to feel motivated. As one of my favorite quotes states:

Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire

Set Small Goals.

It’s okay not to be okay, it’s just not okay to stay that way. It’s also not okay to force yourself to accomplish overly ambitious goals upon realizing it’s not okay to stay “that way”. Be kind to yourself. Build some stamina by setting goals that are small and easy to accomplish. Handling one small goal at a time, you’ll be able to challenge yourself more and more and work your way up to goals with a bit more weight attached to them.

Just to name an example, when I feel like I’ve been in a lazy mood, I often list to-do’s like “do the dishes” or “vacuum the living room”.  They’re small, they need to be done regardless of if I put it on my to-do list or not, and once they’re accomplished I actually have something to mark as accomplished that day. Any step in the direction of progress is a step worth celebrating. Don’t beat yourself up for only accomplishing little things, be happy you accomplished anything!

Ease into a Routine.

You’ve taken all the time you need to re-energize and re-motivate yourself. You’ve stopped at the “Slump” gas station and now you are fueled and ready to get back into the swing of things. You’ve been setting smaller goals and now you are ready to handle something a bit more regimented. As I mentioned above, the last thing you want to do is cram your mind with an overly ambitious to-do list. The same goes for a routine. Whether you had one before you entered the slump or not, the last thing you want to do is throw yourself into a routine you’ll eventually burnout from.

Start off with the idea of a routine you want to adopt. Then try to incorporate bits and pieces of that routine, adding as you master each bit. Eventually you’ll reach a point where-in not only have you successfully adopted your ideal routine, but you’ve also built consistency as well.

A little progress each day adds up to big results 

If you have any tips on how to get out of a slump, please share in the comments below!


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