Are you feeling stuck in a rut?  I don’t know if this is true for many, but I somehow seem to consistently get stuck in January.  Maybe it’s the weather; maybe it’s because I have been tied to a school year for so long that January feels like the middle of the year, not so much the beginning – I don’t know.  But I am feeling like I need a new view of things to get out of my rut – a new perspective.

It turns out it doesn’t take much to get a different view of things.  Sometimes it’s as simple as standing up instead of sitting down while you do or think about something.  So here are some things I have come up with that may help change your perspective.

Stand up – this has helped me before when I am in a rut practicing my instrument, which I usually do sitting down.  When I stand up, things feel different, things look different, things even sound different.  I think it may work for other things as well, so it is on my list.

Do your task in a different place than you usually do – if you usually write in your office and you are stuck, try writing in your living room, or your bedroom, or outside.  Or perhaps take you laptop to the coffee shop or to the beach to write.  Different surroundings may just help break you out of that ‘stuckness’ and get the words flowing again.

Change your elevation – it has been suggested to me that just getting up and standing on a chair while I think about something may create a shift for me.  I am willing to try it, it certainly can’t hurt (as long as I don’t fall off!)

Change it up – if you always do something a certain way, try doing it differently one day.  If you always wear a certain pair of shoes with an outfit, pull out a different pair.  If you always read the paper first thing in the morning, try doing something else first, then read the paper. Change up the thought process – if you always think ‘oh I can’t do that’ when something new comes up, try changing that for a week of thinking ‘yes, I’ll try that.’  If you always say no to something, try saying yes once.

Attend something different – if you are a steady patron of the symphony, try checking out a jazz club for a night.  Or if you are a devotee of punk bands, see what an opera does for you.  Check out a dance troupe or go watch student production of something.  The goal here is not to change your tastes, but rather to expose your brain to something different.  If you discover something new you might enjoy, that is serendipity!

As for me, I think I will part my hair differently, and see if that does anything for me.  Great if it does, and no big deal if it doesn’t – it’s free and it can’t hurt, even if it doesn’t help.

For the ultimate in changing your perspective, try this one:  Whenever something doesn’t work out the way you thought it would, instead of thinking that something went wrong, see it as something that went unexpectedly well, but for reasons that are not yet apparent.

What do you do when you need to get out of a rut?  What helps change your perspective?

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