Have you been feeling drained and uninspired?
You aren’t alone. Getting stuck in a rut can happen to anyone and most people have experienced it at least once in their life. Usually, it just means you’ve been in your comfort zones for too long and your soul is itching to grow.
Of course, right now, it’s an especially challenging time to not fall into a rut.
Being in a funk can be a disheartening and frustrating experience, especially if you’re a creative person because it feels like a part of you is lying dormant, just out of reach.
But there are always opportunities to get your creative juices flowing and make you feel alive again ─ and you don’t even have to leave your home to do them. Here are some easy ideas on how to get out of a rut and stimulate your creativity at home.
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How to Get Out of a Rut and Stimulate Your Creativity at Home
Journal (brain dump) daily
There is a lot going on in our minds at any given moment and all that noise can make it hard to get in touch with our creativity. In fact, it can make us shut down altogether because of the overwhelming amount of information.
Journaling is one of the most effective ways to work through what’s on your mind quickly. It’s like unclogging a pipe. Once you do a brain dump, you’ll find that things flow much more smoothly.
You’ll feel lighter, less frazzled, and gain clarity on things that are bothering or blocking you. You’ll also clear the way for new ideas to start flowing so you can get out of a rut.
Explore with your mind
We live in an amazing time where it’s easier than ever to explore new places and ideas without leaving our homes. Instead of focusing on what you can’t do and where you can’t go, start taking advantage of the whole world of possibility that is available to you.
Learning is one of the best ways to expand your mind. You can explore time and space, step into someone else’s shoes, and broaden your awareness and perspective to invite all sorts of new ideas into your life.
- Take an online course ─ There’s an online course for just about everything imaginable. You can take courses from top universities on Coursera (some of which are free, like The Science of Well-Being from Yale), celebrities on MasterClass, and experts on Udemy.
- Watch educational YouTube videos ─ There is a whole side of YouTube full of free educational content on a vast number of topics. A couple of my favorites are Veritasium (science and other educational topics) and Broadly (short documentaries).
- Start a reading challenge ─ Books are some of the world’s first modes of travel. You can use GoodReads to keep track of your reading challenge, find new books, and connect with other readers.
- Listen to podcasts ─ Podcasts are easy to listen to while doing other things and they’re totally free.
- Join an online community ─ You can learn from others through discussions and connect with interesting people, such as in free Facebook Groups on topics that interest you.
Learning stimulates your mind and encourages a fresh flow of energy that will prevent things from going stagnant.
Try something new
A new project, hobby, activity, or even simply a new routine or way of doing things can also infuse some fresh energy into your life.
Routines are great for stability and consistency, but it’s important to leave room for some magic. When you challenge yourself to do something new or in a new way, your brain creates new neural pathways.
How can you spice things up in your daily routine? Maybe you can try going for a walk first thing in the morning, working from a different spot in your home, or cooking a new recipe. And what’s a hobby or project you’ve been wanting to try?
Don’t let the discomfort of being a beginner stop you ─ sink into the newness of it and treat it like an adventure!
Create a vision board
If you’re feeling uninspired and out of touch with who you are, creating a vision board can be a great way to reconnect with yourself.
A vision board is usually talked about in the context of goal-setting and it’s true that it can be a huge help in determining and staying aligned with what you truly want in life.
This doesn’t just apply to big, long-term goals, though. It applies to your daily life, too. You can gain a lot of insight into how you want to feel and what makes you feel that way when you explore your deepest desires in the process of creating a vision board.
Not only is it really helpful, but it’s also a genuinely fun project. I love making them and they always help me reconnect with what inspires me. It could also help you come up with ways to bring those things that light you up into your current circumstances.
Update your atmosphere
Your environment has a strong effect on how you feel. It’s important that your home be a reflection of you and support your intentions as much as possible.
Depending on your situation, such as living with others, it may be more challenging to personalize your space. However, there are creative ways to work around this. Even if you just have one room that is yours, make the most of it.
Rearranging the furniture and updating the decor are great ways to bring a fresh vibe to your life. You could paint a bold accent wall, hang up new art, bring in some plants (real or fake), or even try your hand at a DIY project. Even just moving your desk to a different wall or bringing in some plants can liven things up.
Have fun with it and get creative!
Give yourself space for ideas
In Sara Blakely’s MasterClass on Self-Made Entrepreneurship (which I highly recommend), she talks about how creating time to get quiet is critical to creativity and problem-solving.
“It’s really important to find out for yourself, where do you get your best ideas? For me, it’s in the car. Where does your mind wander? Carve out time where you’re alone. That’s where the real connection and the gift will come for your ideas.” ─ Sara Blakely
For Albert Einstein, it was when he was shaving and a lot of famous authors have said their best ideas come to them in the shower.
When you are doing a task that you can go auto-pilot on, it takes up just enough of your focus to quiet the noise while allowing your mind to wander without the pressure of performing. This perfect balance is a sweet spot for tapping into your creativity, so make sure to build it into your day.
As kids, we are never short on creativity because we are always playing. This is something most of us begin to struggle with as we get older because we hold ourselves back by judging how we do it or feeling guilty for not spending our time on more ‘productive’ tasks.
But having fun is a key component to our mental and emotional health. Studies have shown that play is vital to developing cognitive skills and creative thinking. It helps us explore our curiosity and accept the unknown.
To get out of a rut, let yourself have some fun. Block time for it in your schedule if you have to. What games or activities do you enjoy that you can do for no other reason than to simply have fun?
Go do that. And do it often.