Reality Blog: Use Holiday Time to Get Out of Your Ruts

A black dart in the center of a dart board

You know that funny, grinding sound your tires make when they just can’t get any traction? There’s a sort of slipping, moaning rasp if you’re driving on ice, or a deep growling if it’s mud and rocks that have you stuck.

Whenever I’m stuck in a rut, I feel like making similar noises of frustration.

My mom once described being in a rut as “lying in a coffin that’s open on both ends and the top.”

I remember her saying that during an epic six-month battle with my younger siblings over learning to read. They refused to budge, and she wasn’t sure how to change tack to get them moving forward. An impasse like that is draining… and once you’re out of it, it can seem like the answer should have been obvious much sooner.

Open-Ended Coffins

Getting stuck is frustrating. It slows your progress and fills you with self-doubt.

But that’s only when you realize you’re stuck.

A worse problem is when you don’t realize you’re stuck, or you’ve been stuck in a bad situation for so long that you’re unable to identify the real problem.

When problems become habits, and those bad habits become routines… well, then we find ourselves lying in those open-ended coffins my mom was talking about.

Signs that Your Habits Aren’t Serving You

All of us do things out of sheer habit, from brushing our teeth to getting up at a specific time in the morning. Sometimes, I feel like my daily routine is the main thing standing between me and insanity… or at least chaos.

But the thing that’s wonderful about habits is the same thing that can become destructive about them — you don’t have to think.

And habits can get old and stale.

They stop working the way they used to, and sometimes they can even start to slow you down, costing time and energy.

This can happen in a lot of different ways…

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Suzanna Fitzgerald

Suzanna Fitzgerald

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