For the last couple of months, I’ve been feeling all sorts of meh and I haven’t had any clarity around what my next personal project should be. I’ve also felt consumed by the hustle harder mentality.
The constant pressure to be generating content to have a steady stream of monetization so the algorithm doesn't forget me is over played in my eyes. I feel like the fun parts of creating are getting lost in the mix because always grinding is what the boss babes (i.e., people I don’t know and have no effect on my life) says I should do. What a bunch bullshit.
This mentality doesn’t motivate me in the very least, in fact, it has the opposite effect. I become paralyzed from the thought of needing to exceed expectations, and I don’t do anything at all. The feeling of meh has hijacked the driver’s seat of my life and put it in neutral – I’m living, but I’m not going anywhere. I procrastinate and lack enthusiasm, and I just go through the motions of life.
Living a life of meh had gotten tired, and I was ready to start living the intentional and authentic life I always strive to achieve again. Just because I’m someone who talks about shifting your mindset, doesn’t mean I’m not human – I get caught in slumps too. Though I do blame the weather a bit for meh’s extended stay… incessant grey skies, rain and clouds will get to you after a while.
Here are five simple ideas I’ve used to help me rid my mind of meh. They aren’t complicated, but are self-initiated… so you’ve got to be ready to push yourself a little.
1. Do some self-reflection.
I literally locked myself in my office to do some soul searching. The first question I asked myself was, “If life had no limits, what would you chose to do?” The list was long and there were a variety of answers. Some were big dreams, but most were little desires. Then I challenged myself with a follow-up inquiry, “What’s holding you back from taking the next step?” Most of my replies to this question were an annoying “nothing.”
By laying it all out, I was able to get a better view of what’s really going on in my head and what my soul really desires. Maybe some dreams aren’t within reach now, but what can I do to make them more attainable in the future? Most of the time we’re the ones holding ourselves back and stalling the realization of the things we want because fear is in the way, thus living in meh. Facing that fear or at least recognizing it exists is the beginning of making it a thing of the past.
2. Take action now.
For the longest time I have hesitated about getting comfortable with putting the big weights on the barbell for overhead lifts at the gym. I want to be able to drop the bar when needed, and the only way I can do this is if I put on the big weights. Last week I tested myself with a couple of heavier lifts during a long workout, this week I used that same weight for an AMRAP, today I did a personal record squat snatch with the big weights (30 kg/66 lb total – might not sound like a lot to some, but to me it’s tough). I can now drop the bar.
I can’t get comfortable with the challenges I set for myself if I don’t work on it consistently. I know it’s cliché but trust the process. Action is momentum and focus makes it intentional, meh isn’t a fan of either of these things. By the way, it also helps to have friends on the sidelines telling you your barbell is too light. So don’t forget to surround yourself with good people.
3. Celebrate small wins.
For months I had three things rolling around my car: a Christmas tree skirt needing dry-cleaning, boots needing repair, and trousers needing to be hemmed. I pass these places daily; it shouldn’t have taken me months to complete these tasks… I mean, a Christmas tree skirt needing to be cleaned in April, WTF? A few weeks ago, I’d finally grown so annoyed with my procrastination that I scooped the things up, and within ten minutes I had delivered each item to its destination. As I closed the door to the dry-cleaner, I felt lighter and accomplished. Dropping off the last item was like having an invisible weight being lifted off my shoulders.
I’m a big fan of celebrating the little wins. It’s important to recognize all the small things that get done and the sense of accomplishment that comes along with it… they tend to get overlooked and viewed as unimportant. This is the stuff builds confidence and tells meh to get lost.
4. Try something new.
For the past six months, I’ve been toying with the idea of taking an improv class. I’ve done the research, found the place, emailed them, followed them on Instagram… you know, the general stalker-like things one does when they are interested but scared of committing to something. The other day, I said, “Fuck it.” I pulled out my laptop, went to the website and registered for the trial class for 40 bucks. I’m only slightly freaking out about making a fool of myself; but you are only given one life to live, and I don’t want to regret not giving it my all.
Trying something new is also a form of acting, but with a kicker of the unknown… I have no idea how to do improv. Maybe my knotted-up stomach isn’t crippling fear but anxious excitement, at least that’s what I’m hoping it is. It also gets us outside of our comfort zone, which is where a lot of growth happens and tells meh they aren’t welcome because you’re not afraid of putting yourself out there.
5. Get in the flow.
Sometimes I forget to eat. Not because I’m intentionally starving myself, but because I’m in a state of flow. This would often happen when I was writing my book. The tips of my fingers would hurt from tapping away for hours on my laptop and my butt would a flat and numb from sitting for so long, but I felt energized. The writing didn’t feel like work, it felt like fulfillment, purpose, and passion.
Have you ever felt that sensation of flow? Be mindful of these moments because the things causing this reaction are what make you feel full of joy and satisfaction. Focus on those! Does organizing give you a sense of calm. Do it. Maybe it’s learning how to use a new computer program. Get on it. Does a manicured lawn and garden give you joy? Reach out to me because I need your help.
Here’s my theory…
I’m all about living a laid-back lifestyle, but meh takes it to the next level. It hates to be disturbed from its lackadaisical approach to life and doesn’t exactly thrive on triumph.
Taking back your power from meh and getting clear about what is next on the docket doesn’t have to be complicated. In my opinion, simplifying things is always the better approach, and if you are willing to invest in the effort… you can walk away with big returns.
Like kicking your old boyfriend to the curb (yes… he was nice to look at, but boring as hell with zero potential), breaking up with meh takes a desire to live outside of your comfort zone. You knew then you deserved better, so why not now? Go get cozy with the uncomfortable things because you’ll be inviting in new opportunities and swapping old mindsets for a greater evolution of self.