You’re busy creating the life of your dreams, making great progress and then bang! You come to a halt. Maybe, you don’t know what to do next. Maybe, you know exactly what to do, but for some reason you’re not doing it. Or maybe, you don’t even know what you want anymore… I’ve got some ideas for you – try one or all of these playful ways to get unstuck and you’re bound to get moving again.
Get more sleep
“But sleeping isn’t really playful”, I hear you say. Usually, it isn’t. That’s why we have such a hard time getting ourselves to bed: there are so many other things we could be doing that are more fun. But you can add some play even to sleep. Here’s how.
1) Have a fun mantra that makes you smile at the thought of going to bed. If you can’t think of one, you can borrow mine (and I borrowed it from Carolyn from Carolyn’s Words): “The muse must recharge”. You can even make a fun drawing to go with it.
2) Take a book to bed with you. SARK’s Change Your Life Without Getting Out Of Bed is perfect!
3) Try interpreting your dreams, it’s fun and you can gain some amazing insights. And to interpret dreams, first you must dream, right?
4) Have a conversation with your imaginary friend before you drift off to sleep. Don’t have an imaginary friend? It’s never too late to get one (or a dozen of them)! Download your free imaginary friend playbook here (no opt-in required).
5) Get romantic with your partner. Ok, this may initially distract you from going to sleep, but you’ll get there eventually.
If you’re trying to create movement towards your dreams, why not start with some physical movement? It’s easy to do and very effective.
6) Do a crazy dance (definition of “crazy” by David Leonhardt: “would hurt your eyes to watch”).
7) Jump on a trampoline.
8) Play with the kids.
9) Try something new: skating, surfing, skiing or another sport you’ve always wanted to do.
Get in touch with nature
Consider this: science confirms that we’re happiest when we’re in contact with nature. A UK study found that people report highest levels of happiness near the sea, followed by mountains, forests and farms. And when we’re happy, our creativity flows freely and solutions appear out of nowhere. So…
10) Go for a swim at the beach.
11) Have lunch at the park.
12) Practice yoga in a natural environment.
13) Feed the birds.
14) Get busy in your garden (but only if you enjoy it!).
Your creative endeavours can be related to your stuckness, but they don’t have to be. Once you get your creative juices flowing, you’ll find that new ideas pop into your mind effortlessly.
15) Cook something new. Most of us stick to the same meals day after day and it gets boring. I know, the kids will probably not eat it unless it’s one of the two things in the world that they like, but do it for yourself. What do you feel like having for dinner today?
16) Engage in some art and craft with your kids.
17) Take a camera and go for a photo walk. You can choose a theme (for example, “red” or “flowers”) or just take photos of everything that catches your eye.
18) Draw your stuckness as a place, an object or an animal – it will give you a different perspective. You can also draw it as a person and have a conversation with it.
19) Try a prompted story writing exercise like this one.
Sometimes being stuck is a sign that you need a change of direction and to get unstuck you need to explore your deepest feelings.
20) What is your ‘why’? Why are you trying to do what you’re trying to do? Why did you start your project in the first place? Has your motivation changed? When you sit with these questions you may discover that you’re stuck because you don’t really want to move forward anymore. Or your project may still be a priority, but for different reasons than when you first started it and when your motivation is different, the way to go about it could be completely different.
21) Check out Unstuck.com. You’ll be guided through fun diagnostics and given a prescription to get unstuck.
Stop trying to get unstuck for the moment and turn your attention to something completely unrelated. As Gill Andrews puts it, “it might feel like you are procrastinating at first, but actually your subconsciousness is still working on it. It just needs some free space from your conscious guiding hand to generate new ideas”.
22) Play a computer game.
23) Finish a round of Sudoku.
24) Watch a movie.
25) Ask yourself, ‘What would I like to do right now?’ Then go ahead and do it. Without guilt. And if now is not the right moment, schedule the time for it within the next week.
Big thank you to David Leonhardt, Phil Turner, Dangerous Lee, Justin March, Max Ivey, Gill Andrews, Matt Gates and Deepanshu Gahlaut, who contributed their ideas via MyBlogU to make this post possible.