7 Smart Habits When You Feel Lost
I say adios to 2017 by saying adios to my job, unemployed right smack on January 1.
I text some of my closest friends in all caps I QUIT MY JOB. LET’S HANG OUT. half-glad half-helppp-lemme-cling-on-to-you-for-dear-life.
But more the former because 1. I’m free and 2. I get the chance to press pause, catch my breath and enjoy the simple pleasure of just chillin’ out. Which I hardly ever do btw.
Maybe I'll tell you why I left my job after only 8 weeks another time.
But for now let me tell you about what comes after — the first time I say I have no idea what to do next.
I thought I should be good with this by now. When I left college, I became a planner. I would write goals for up to 10 years into the future, so sure that my heart and tenacity will get me exactly where I want to go.
But nope! Now I know life will never go exactly as planned, not even if we give it our all. And our job is to move through the highs and lows, to honor our pace, and to enjoy even the annoying but inevitable phenomenon of getting lost, and sometimes, a total engine failure.
I know it's not fun. And while we all know we'll eventually get going and find our way, it doesn't feel that way when you're in it.
So I made a list of 7 habits to keep you sane and excited for what's to come.
- Be honest. With yourself, and with others. It's okay not to have everything figured out. The sooner you stop pretending, the more courage you'll have to actually do something about it.
- Breathe. Here’s a simple step-by-step count for mindful breathing: Deep breath (4 secs), hold it (7 secs), let it out (8 secs). Making this a habit gives you clarity, helps you to be more positive, releases tension and toxins and it lifts you up when you feel down. See for yourself!
- Do some chores. It’s exercise, you feel good about being able to help around the house and it’s honestly the perfect time to just let the mind wander. What I find myself thinking about while soaping and scrubbing nowadays: if we’re all supposed to think the same in a perfectly peaceful world, the many books I'd like to read and what my dream studio would look like. Pro tip: blast some upbeat music for extra positivity and booty-shaking. More pro tip: Beyoncé.
- Look back on your life. Remember the sweet memories, your growth through the struggles, even the littlest blessings you enjoy today. Gratitude is a powerful tool for positivity.
- Find inspiration. Get on Pinterest, read books, learn a new skill and if you can afford it, travel.
- Focus on other people. Spend more time with your family, your friends, colleagues, even strangers. I find that listening to other people's stories and struggles humbles me. A lot of times, I realize my problems aren't as big as I imagine them to be.
- Consider your options. No need to make concrete plans just yet! Think: opportunities and possibilities, no matter how weird or impossible. I like a friend’s approach to this. He doesn’t go for dreams straight on, he just thinks “what if?” What if I work for McDonald’s just for fun? I’ve always loved math and science, what if I tutor some kids part-time? I enjoy organizing events, what if I work as an assistant for an events coordinator until I can eventually go on my own?
If you haven't noticed yet, these 7 habits are all about getting out of your head and getting your mind and body moving! AKA relax and have fun!
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