by Hannah J. McKay
8 Practical Ways to Get Out of a Slump
I’m not going to lie. March has been a doozy of a month. [These two little bright spots not included. They give me a reason to smile and laugh constantly].
Nothing really big has happened, but then…maybe that’s part of it. It’s the last hurrah of winter, holding on tight with its dreary, drizzly days. Spring teases, I see the blooms about to burst, feel the shift in the weather, but still mostly clouds, lots of wind, chilly breezes.
Can it just be July already?
Actually April will be just fine. As the calendar inches closer to the first of the month, I hold my breath. I won’t be sad to leave March in the dust. It’s been a month of long days, a lot of holding patterns, a time change that threw us off completely, a continuing health journey for me that’s felt discouraging, stretching times in mothering, some questions longing for answers…
Bring on April, bring on spring at its finest, at its fullest. Bring on more sun [hopefully!] and warmer temps and travel and moving closer to answers and wellness and…well, I’ll post my April goals next week. This week I want to talk about:
8 Practical Way to Get Out of a Slump
1. Stay the course. Do the next thing. Move forward with what you know. Even when it feels like you’re wading through waist high water. Put one foot in front of the other. This is when it pays to have morning rhythms [bonus for daily rhythms that will carry you through the entire day]. So you don’t have to think so hard, you just have to do. Read your Bible, write that blog post, do those dishes, put in that load of laundry, turn on that praise music. Whatever it is for you, be encouraged: forward movement only asks for one step at a time.
2. Meet any pressing physical needs. Do you need rest? Find a way to build it into your day(s). Make sure you’re staying hydrated and eating good food that’s good for you. Make time for some exercise, a long, hot shower, anything that makes you feel more like yourself. A little self-care goes a long way.
3. Step out of routine. Forget what you know. Do something different. Do something new. Take a different route to work. Take the kids out for donuts before hitting the grocery store. Walk to the library instead of driving. Leave routine in the dust. Weave some spontaneity into your day.
3. Identify one thing that is weighing on your mind + take the first step to address it. Go ahead. Grab a notebook or a blank piece of paper and a pen and brain dump. Write everything out that’s on your mind. Get it all in black and white. Be real. Be honest. Then pick one thing, maybe the biggest thing if you’re feeling bold or maybe the smallest thing if you feel like you need to build momentum, and write down the steps you need to take to address/solve it. Then start.
4. Make your bed. Yes, I know. Too easy. But it makes a huge difference. It’s one thing you can control. Also? Get dressed, even if it’s yoga pants and a clean shirt, and put on some makeup. Huge morale boosters.
5. Move your body for at least 20 minutes. Get the kids out for a walk, do a yoga video at nap time, play soccer in the park. Whatever floats your boat and gets you moving.
6. Journal a prayer. Take ten minutes and find a quiet place. For me, that usually means early morning or nap time. Grab a journal or notebook, a blank piece of paper or pull up a new Word doc on your computer. And just start praying on paper. Whatever comes, however it comes. Talk to Jesus.
7. Do something for someone else. Write a snail mail note. Bake a batch of cookies and deliver/send them. Send a text. Watch another mama’s kids. Invite friends over for dinner. Send a care package to someone in need. The opportunities are endless.
8. Buy a $5 bouquet of flowers for your table. I usually get the cheapest + prettiest bunch when I get my groceries. And then I make them last as long as possible by changing the water and trimming the ends every couple of days. Today I split my still-going-strong-week-old bouquet between the kitchen bar and my bathroom. So bright + cheery.
Those are a few things I’ve learned and implemented over the last month. They didn’t always make me feel better in the moment, but the goodness has accumulated and helped me through this month. And April is going to be better. Brighter. I can feel it.
Cheers to spring in full bloom,