Your Life Feeling a Little Ho Hum?

Water on window raining

As a forester, navigating dirt roads this time of year can be quite the challenge. This is one of our rainiest times of year and coming off a wet 2018 has made matters even worse.

When dirt roads get soggy, they get soft especially in lower lying areas. When they get soft, tires will leave impressions or ruts. The soggier and softer the road, and the bigger the tire, the deeper the rut.  Depending on the road (path) you’re on, avoiding ruts can be a real challenge. Often, life works in much the same way: It sometimes becomes a little soggy and we can end up in a rut. As with these dirt roads, these ruts can be difficult to avoid, and even harder to get out of, once you’re in one.

Now, you may be wondering what I mean by “life becomes a little soggy.”

Dog lying on bed with bored look on its faceThinking back to a rainy day. Now, think of several rainy days back-to-back. It can make one a little stir-crazy. I know that this affects those of us who love the outdoors more than others who aren’t so inclined, and I also know many people who love this type of day because it gives them the excuse to watch movies and/or sit around and read books; however, after several days of rain it can be a little depressing and mundane. Shall I say life becomes a little ho-hum?

Let’s say on day five, the sun reappears. If we are not careful, though, the “ho-hum” feeling will linger. I like to think of ho-hum as ordinary, nothing exciting going on. And let’s face it, sometimes “ordinary” can get downright boring. This is what I call being in the “rut of life.”

When you’re going about your day-to-day life, it can become hard to recognize you’re in a rut. Generally speaking, as with traveling down a dirt road, the longer you’re in a rut, the harder it becomes to get out of it. Makes sense, right?

So how do you know? For me, below are a few signs:

  • if you stop and think about it, you probably are.
  • if you wake and follow the same routine with the same attitude without excitement.
  • if you feel your life ho-hum or lacking originality.
  • if you are bored, you may be in a rut.
  • if you find yourself complaining about more and more.
  • if you frequently use the phrase, “I’m living the dream,” you are likely in a rut.

How do we get out of these ruts?

As with being in a rut on a dirt road, we just need to shift to another gear and brace for a bump. Metaphorically speaking, that other gear in a truck might be a lower gear or it may require a more drastic move such as shifting into 4-wheel drive. When these don’t work, we may need a little help from a friend or a passerby to give us a little push or tug. Below are a few suggestions that have helped me:

  • change the way you go to work.
  • change your daily routine.
  • try a different form of exercise, if of course you exercise.
  • change your diet; I find that we generally eat the same few meals week after week.
  • spend days off doing something different.
  • Take a long walk or hike out of doors.
  • talk to a friend or family member that you haven’t spoken to in awhile.

Related: 8 ways to get out of a rut

When we change the physical things we do in life, it can causeour brains to think a little differently. Those physical things change our perspective and when we change our perspective, we change our lives.

Stay tuned next week when we discuss when our ruts can lead to a !

Soulful Quote:

“Everything that we see is a shadow cast by that which we do not see.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

Song:

Readers’ choice. However, you must choose from a genre you don’t normally listen to and you have to do it for more than one song. Listen to several, over several days.

Game Exercise/Life Changer:

Change something about your daily routine.

Don’t Be a Cow!

 

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