If you’re feeling like you’re in a rut, you’re not alone. Many people feel stuck at some point in their lives. They don’t know how to get out of the funk they’re in and they feel like they’re just going through the motions day-by-day. If this sounds like you, don’t worry – there are things that you can do to break out of your comfort zone and start living again! In this blog post, I will discuss some tips for getting out of your rut and starting fresh.
Signs you are stuck in a rut
You have not been feeling yourself lately, but how can you be sure that the problem is that you are stuck in a rut, and not something else?
Here are some signs that you may be stuck in a rut:
You feel like you’re going through the motions
If you feel like you’re just going through the motions day-by-day, it’s a sign that you’re stuck in a rut. You’re not living – you’re just existing. You’re not doing anything that brings you joy or makes you feel alive.
You don’t have any goals
When you’re in a rut, it’s easy to lose sight of your goals. You may have had goals and aspirations at one point, but now you can’t even remember what they were. Or, you may have never had any goals to begin with. If you don’t have any goals, it’s a sign that you’re stuck in a rut.
You don’t know what you want in life
Another sign that you’re stuck in a rut is if you don’t know what you want in life. You may have an idea of what you don’t want, but you can’t seem to figure out what it is that you do want. This can be a frustrating feeling, but it’s a common one among people who are stuck in a rut.
You’re not taking any risks
When you’re stuck in a rut, it’s easy to play it safe. You don’t want to take any risks because you’ve lost all motivation and nothing seems to be important enough to go out on a limb for. However, this lack of risk-taking can lead to even more feelings of stuck-ness.
You feel like you’re in a dark place
There are many parallels between being stuck in a rut and depression. In fact you should also consider the possibility that you may have lost the zest for life because you are depressed.
This is particularly the case if things that give you joy no longer do so, you’ve lost interest in social activities and your sleeping and eating habits have changed.
If the feeling of darkness persists and you are experiencing additional symptoms of depression, then you need to consider reaching out to a mental health professional.
Depression is a serious illness, and it is important to get help if you think you may be suffering from it.
There are also several helplines or support groups that you can reach out to, especially if your thoughts are turning even darker and thoughts of suicide are flitting through your mind. DO NOT ignore such thoughts – take action immediately.
Important information for anyone struggling with suicidal thoughts
If you are struggling with thoughts of suicide, please act immediately. Contact a mental health professional or call a suicide hotline in your area.
In the United States, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress, as well as prevention and crisis resources.
You can call the Lifeline at +1 800 273 8255. They also have a chat function on their website that you can use if you do not feel like talking.
In Canada, the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention provides resources and support to those affected by suicide.
In the United Kingdom you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Helpline or call them on 0800 689 5652.
If you are in another country, please visit this page for a list of international suicide hotlines.
Getting out of a rut and living life to the full
One of the first things you need to do is take a step back and assess your current situation. What is it that you’re not happy with? Is it your job, your relationship, your living situation, or something else entirely? Once you’ve pinpointed what it is that’s causing you to feel stuck, you can start to make a plan for change.
Getting out of a rut – unhappy at work?
Sometimes things go sideways at work. We might not click with our new team mates, or our boss might be putting too much pressure on us. Over time this will lead to burnout, which of course is simply another word for being stuck in a rut.
If you think that work is the cause of your unhappiness, take action. Speak to HR and ask if you can be put on a new team or transferred to a new department.
If you’re feeling like you’re being overworked, have a conversation with your boss about your workload. It’s important to advocate for yourself at work, or you’ll never be happy.
You can also look for a new job if you feel like it’s time for a change. Just be sure to take the time to find a job that’s a good fit for you, or you’ll end up in the same situation as before.
Looking for a new job can be a daunting task, but there are plenty of resources out there to help you with your job search. If you’re not sure where to start, try talking to your friends or family members about their jobs – they may be able to give you some good leads.
Getting out of a rut – Relationship woes
Has your relationship lost its spark? While it is normal for the honeymoon phase to wear off, if you’re feeling like your relationship has become more of a chore than anything else, it’s time to take stock of the situation.
You and your partner need to sit down and have a serious conversation about your relationship. If you’re both on the same page, you can start working on ways to reignite the spark.
Consider new activities that you can do together, or old activities that you used to enjoy but have since fallen by the wayside. It’s important to make time for each other, even if you’re both busy with work or other commitments.
If your partner does not respond, or is not interested on working with you to save the relationship, then you may need to consider whether or not it’s time to move on.
Getting out of a rut – Loneliness
If you have lost the zest for life because you are lonely, make some changes to your social life. Join a club or group that interest you, or start planning regular get-togethers with your friends. If you don’t have any close friends, now is the time to start making some.
Here are some tips to consider if you would like to expand or diversify your circle of friends:
Look for people who share your interests. This can be anything from a book club to a sports team. Your shared hobbies and passions will make it easier for you to click and they could form the base for some important new friendships.
Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone. Say yes to social invitations, even if you don’t know anyone there. You never know, you might meet some great new people. Don’t let social anxiety or shyness hold you back.
Be friendly and open to conversation. When you’re out and about, strike up conversations with people around you. You never know, you might have a lot in common with them.
Attend community events. This is a great way to meet new people who live near you.
Sign up for a course or workshop. This is a great way to meet like-minded people and learn something new at the same time.
Reach out to family and friends
One of the best things you can do when you’re feeling stuck is to reach out to your friends and family. In most cases they’ll be more than happy to lend a listening ear, and they may even have some good advice for you. Talking to someone who cares about you can help you to see things from a different perspective, and it may be just what you need to get out of your rut.
Obviously, we are not all blessed with loving and caring families who support us, and if this is the case with you too then there are plenty of other people out there who care. As well as professional support, there are many charities and organisations that can offer you the emotional support you need.
Reach out for professional help
If you’re feeling stuck and you don’t know where to turn, there’s no shame in reaching out for professional help. A therapist or counsellor can help you to identify the root of your problem and come up with a plan to address it. If you’re suffering from depression, they can also provide you with the treatment and support you need to get better.
There are many different types of therapy, so it’s important to find one that’s right for you. If you’re not sure where to start, your GP can usually give you some good recommendations.
Making the decision to seek professional help is a big step, but it’s often the first step on the road to recovery. If you’re feeling lost and alone, reach out for help – there are people out there who care, and they can help you to get your life back on track.
Final thoughts on getting out of a rut
Making changes in your life can be difficult, but it’s important to remember that you’re the only one who can make yourself happy. If you’re feeling stuck, take some time to assess your situation and make a plan to get out of your rut. With a little effort, you’ll be feeling better in no time.
For Further Reading:
The following are some posts you might find useful if you struggle with anxiety.
- Relationship Anxiety: What It Is, What Causes It, and How to Overcome It
- How to Overcome Anxiety with Simple Grounding Techniques
- Driving Anxiety: How you can overcome the phobia of driving
- Pet Separation Anxiety: The Human-Animal Bond in Two Studies
- How to Help Your Child Overcome Social Anxiety: What You Need to Know
- 20 Affirmations to Calm Anxiety and Improve Your Life
- Anxiety vs. Depression: How to Tell the Difference and Get Help
- Anxiety and Heart Disease in Men: What you need to know
- Spinner Rings – a natural way to reduce stress and anxiety
- Music To Heal Anxiety – The Best Songs to Listen to When You Are Anxious
- Managing Anxiety and How to Stop It from Ruining Your Life
- How to Manage Anxiety and Stress with a Mindfulness Practice
- What to Say to a Friend with Anxiety Instead of ‘Don’t Stress’
- Inspirational Quotes about Overcoming Anxiety
- Everything You Need to Know About Self-Soothing
- The Danger of Being a Perfectionist: Why You Need to Let Go
- Getting Out of a Rut: Tips for Breaking out of Your Comfort Zone
- Interoception: the hidden sense that shapes wellbeing
- How to Control Anxiety in the Face of War: Tips for Coping
- Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD): Everything You Need to Know
- Gardening – A Fun and Healthy Way to Lower Stress, Anxiety and Depression
- How to break the rumination cycle
- 11 Steps to Coping with Climate Anxiety: What You Need to Know
- Acupuncture for Anxiety – How does it work and why does it help?
- Mindfulness Puzzles: How to Reduce Stress and Relax with Adult Puzzles
- 11 Ways to Stop Comfort Eating and Cope Better with Stress
- How to help Employees Deal with Anxiety in the Workplace
- Suffering From Anxiety Attacks? Symptoms and 10 Ways to Calm Down
- Separation Anxiety in Adults – How to Overcome Separation Anxiety as an Adult
- The Answer to the Question “Is There Such a Thing as Good Anxiety?”
- A Comprehensive Guide to Different Types of Anxiety Disorders
- Stress Eating: What is it, Signs you’re doing it, and How to Stop
- Things to help with anxiety – How to Reduce Worry and Overthinking
- 10 Symptoms of Generalized Anxiety Disorder as Defined By DSM 5
- Anxiety Disorders – do we pass them on to our children?
- How to Overcome Social Anxiety – 6 Effective Strategies
- How to Cope with Climate Anxiety – What You Need to Know
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links in this post are affiliate links. When you use one of my affiliate links, the company compensates me. At no additional cost to you, I’ll earn a commission, which helps me run this blog and keep my in-depth content free of charge for all my readers.