Step #1: Just Sit There.
I wrote the words down over and over again. I was creating a list of things I needed to do in order to get my so-called sh*t together.
This is uncomfortable. Sitting here, writing this to you. But me, sitting here, actually writing this, is what is driving change in my life. I know, sitting doesn’t necessarily scream “making a change” does it? It is usually equated with laziness, and maybe even slovenliness. But in my case, sitting here writing this to you is helping me get my life together. It is helping me to pick up the pieces after losing my job, recovering from scary medical news, and all the other ways I felt like my life went to shit in the past few months.
But what do you do if you find yourself suddenly without a job, counting the pennies, alone and far away from the comforts of family and friends? The only thing you can do: keep. moving.
Which, when I actually write out, sounds counterproductive and counterintuitive with what I just said about sitting. But hear me out…
While technically unemployed (ie not working a full-time gig, but trying my hand at freelancing) for the past month or so, I have learned that the only thing I can do to keep from going completely insane is to keep moving forward. For me the internet is how I make money. I make connections, I strategize, I execute, I eventually reap the benefits the great expansive digital wild west can offer me. And that requires sitting. In front of a computer for hours each day.
So what have I been doing to keep moving forward while just sitting here day in and day out?
I learned some new skills.
I spent time learning how to use Lightroom and Photoshop. I am learning how shoot and edit videos. I took the time to learn more about my DSLR camera and practiced by doing a photoshoot for a fellow Nashville blogger. I even learned as much as I could about setting up e-commerce platforms so that I could start selling my own products on my website. More of that to come soon.
The point is, I didn’t sit idle. I sat and became productive. All of these skills are skills that I want to incorporate into my professional and blogging life and I finally had the time to do it. So I sat here and did it.
Took a class that got me out of the house.
Using a bit of leeway here I didn’t actually take a class, but I did sign-up for a conference, where I sat in the back the whole time, related to my industry, had several meetings with a career coach, and signed-up for a virtual class/challenge with other women who are trying to figure their lives out whether professionally or personally.
The point here is that I got to share my time with other people who were either a) trying to help me or b) trying to further themselves in life. It is great to surround yourself with like-minded people when you are riding the struggle bus.
Organize your surroundings.
I am still working on this one, but I FINALLY started organizing my room and work space and am so in love with it, I don’t know what took me so long. I started to go through boxes and bags that have been in storage since moving to Nashville and not only did I find some important things, it allowed me to clear up the clutter which in turn helped me feel more organized and empowered.
The key point here is free yourself from the unnecessary clutter and it will boost your mood! I quite literally sat on the floor for hours going through boxes and it felt so productive.
I found myself with a desire to make something. To get my hands dirty. To make something pretty someone else could admire. After being in a position with minimal creative outlet for the last year and a half I just wanted to make. Whether that meant writing, coloring, painting, building, it didn’t matter I had to create something. So I did exactly that. I made artwork for my niece. I colored. I tried and tried my best to write and eventually broke through a serious case of writer’s block. It felt amazing to simply create something. In my own voice. With my own viewpoint.
The point here is find your own creative outlet that will help you get back to your roots. It doesn’t have to be actual artwork. It could be reading while sitting in your favorite cozy chair, or gardening. As long as you are doing something that feeds your soul.
When it comes down to it and you find yourself at an impasse you cannot let your life stall out. You have to keep placing the proverbial one foot in front of the other in order to move forward. It seems simple enough, but when you are in the throes of a self-appointed pity party and lacking the desire to do anything it is paramount to the health of your id, ego, and superego to simply keep moving.
So as a twenty or thirty-something who may or may not rely heavily on their social network and is in the process of getting their shit together the only thing you can do is take a deep breath and start with the easiest thing first. For you that may be to clear your room of clutter or taking a class to get you out of the house, or, like me, simply sit there.
The best thing NOT to do is to sweep it all under the rug and refuse to deal with it. That never helps and will induce even more anxiety later on. Force yourself out of bed, out of the house. Shower. Eat your veggies.
And most importantly remember that it is a process, all you have to do is sit there and keep moving.