This post is the third and final post of what has become a three part series, which started with Don’t Get Stuck, continued with How to Know When You’re Stuck, and finishes today with How to Get Un-Stuck.
Getting Un-Stuck: Career
Dig deep and find out what kind of work you love. Ask yourself the tough questions about why you ended up in your current job, what you always wished you could do for a living, and what your absolute passion is. If you need help, shoot me an email.
Schedule lunch with a colleague this week. Work sucks when we don’t like the people we work with. We often don’t like what we don’t know. Get to know a colleague you’ve long been wanting to get to know better or maybe one you don’t understand.
Set a professional goal completely outside of your job description or performance metrics. Job descriptions and performance metrics are what make life at work boring. They trick us into limiting ourselves to once set of tasks or accomplishments. Throw that stuff away for thirty minutes and brainstorm some goals that would be fun, cool, or beneficial to accomplish. Write one down, put it in your office or cubicle, and make it happen… Start with step one today.
Learn a new skill. Almost every major university has online training in typical school subjects and skills-based learning. Many companies offer great training programs that don’t get taken advantage of. Find one that looks intriguing and sign up. Then SHOW UP!
If all else fails, start a side hustle doing the work you love. I can’t tell you how many blogs I read that inspire people to get passionate about life by starting a side hustle outside of work. If you’re really in a rut and doing work that is monotonous and you can’t change it, invest in a side hustle. A side hustle takes your great love or passion and puts it to work making money. Set a goal of making just $500 from your passion in the next three months. Failure is not an option. If you want more resources, send me an email.
Getting Un-Stuck: Relationships
Whether you are in a relationship or not, go on a date. If you’re in a relationship, find a restaurant, a show, or anything else new and potentially exciting and invite your significant other to go there with you. Get it on the calendar today! If you’re not in a relationship, ask someone on a friendly date. It’s not the end of the world if they say no, and you might have a blast if they say yes!
Plan a dinner or activity with friends. It’s easy to end up partying with our friends, especially as young professionals. It’s something consistent that is always an option, and nobody has to do any planning. Everyone just shows up at a bar and that’s that… But if you really care about your friends, plan a dinner or outing with your core group where you can spend quality time together. You’d be surprised at how much fun you can have in the absence of a bar if you’re willing to put in some effort!
Place at least one random phone this week to someone you care about. It takes maybe 30 minutes, and it can substantially change the trajectory of that person’s day. Call them and just start the conversation by saying: I was thinking about you and I wanted to see how you were doing. Let it carry on from there.
Put a reminder on your calendar each week to tell someone you love them. We don’t say I love you enough. Period. Do it.
Surprise a loved one with a hand-made gift, note, or meal. We don’t have to spend much money to give a pleasant surprise. Use your hands to make a gift, write a note, or try a new recipe and give it to someone you care about.
Give your kids one entire day of undivided attention. Yes, the whole day. Kids can be annoying. They can seem like a lot. Sometimes you just need some time away. But on the kid’s end, sometimes they just want your undivided attention. So give it to them – for just one day. Don’t you think you’ll look back fondly on a day sans to-do list, cell phone, and errands?
Getting Un-Stuck: Personal Growth
Go to your favorite physical bookstore and buy the ONE book that looks most interesting, fun, or promising. Pick a book, any book. Enjoy it within the next week. If you don’t start and end it immediately, it will sit on your shelf and not get read. Reading gathers momentum, and in a couple of months you might find you have a new favorite store and hobby!
Take 4 hours of vacation time from work and do something you love. If you’re allowed to take half-days, do it. By yourself. Don’t tell anyone. Sneak away for the afternoon and do something you love. Whatever it is, just enjoy it and don’t worry about anything else in the world.
Set 3 stretch goals for 2012. Not resolutions… goals. Things you can accomplish and be proud of. If you don’t usually set goals, just use them for things you normally do, but give them intention. If you already use goals, set some goals that will expand for comfort zone or encourage you to experience new things.
Find your local Habitat for Humanity affiliate (or charity of choice) and schedule a day of service for you (extra points for you AND your family). There are a million organizations that need our help right now. It is always a perfect time of year to support those in need just because. Give it a shot and see what you think!
Whatever made you leap for joy when you were a child… Make time for that at least once in the next two weeks. Whatever we do, it is so important that we don’t forget our childish joy. Just have fun. Do it with friends, or family, or by yourself. But please, over the next two weeks, do something that made you leap for joy as a kid.
Have other techniques for getting unstuck, or generally enjoying life? Please share in the comments!
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