Today’s solocast topic is: How to Pull Yourself Out of a Rut
I wanted to take you through my three step process for helping you pull yourself out of a rut, out of a down period or just feeling really off. We want to discuss this and support each other because it’s something that I think is pretty universal.
This topic is inspired by Heather, who I believe is from Virginia Beach. She is a beautiful member of our community that submitted a question last week for our Q&A podcast. So I was really inspired by her question where she described just feeling lost and unsure and confused.
I send you lots of love, Heather. Thank you for inspiring today, and I hope you listen to this one as well.
Topics Covered In How to Pull Yourself Out of a Rut
#1. My biggest personal rut and how I came out of it
#2. How to reset by connecting to yourself on the level of being
#3. Setting positive intentions with each of our Four Cornerstones
#4. Continuing to ‘build’, to fully pull yourself out of a rut
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Hey Beauties. Welcome back to our Monday Solocast Podcast, where our topic today is how to pull yourself out of a rut. We’ve all felt that feeling of just feeling frustrated, lethargic, confused, not sure where to go, what direction to take, and it’s something that pretty much all of us go through in some form at some time.
I wanted to take you through today my three step process for helping you pull yourself out of a rut or pull yourself out of just a down period or just feeling really off. Again, so we can just really discuss this and support each other because it’s something that I think is pretty universal. I will say that this topic is actually inspired by Heather, who I believe is from Virginia Beach. She was someone that … a beautiful member of our community that submitted a question last week for our Q&A podcast. So I was really inspired by her question where she described just feeling lost and unsure and confused. So I really send you lots of love, Heather. Thank you for inspiring today, and I hope you listen to this one as well.
Fan of the Week
Before we go in to our topic though, I just want to give a quick shout out to our fan of the week. This is by Moon and sun wellness center. Here, she writes: “Kimberly, I first discovered you somehow when I found your green smoothie online. It brought me to you and now I have read your books, completed your recipes, and listened to your podcast. You helped me stay motivated to be my best. Thank you.” Moon and Sun Wellness Center, thank you so much for being part of our community. Thank you for your great review. Thank you. Thank you so much. It really means a lot. Sending you a big, huge virtual hug. No matter where you are, wherever your wellness center is, I send you all my best.
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All right, so let’s get right into our topic today, which is How to Pull Yourself Out of a Rut. This could be, the way … rut is sort of a very broad term. It could be where you’re just feeling like you lack motivation to do the things that you want to do, the things you want to accomplish, or it could be that you got back into some sort of habit that you don’t want to have anymore, that isn’t helpful to you, whether it’s not eating great, or smoking, or something in that regard.
So there is a study from Psychology Today that found that up to 80% of alcoholics and 90% of smokers end up returning to their habit at least once after you quit. Dr. G. Alan Marlatt, who is an addiction behavior researcher and clinical psychologist, found that setback is an opportunity to develop better techniques for anticipating and avoiding temptations to fall into bad habits again. So he has a whole model for recovery, which includes identifying triggers and learning from mistakes.
That’s one form of a rut is getting into that sort of behavior. I also think there’s a sort of rut, which just feels like, “What do I do? I’m confused. This feels so stressful,” or just, “I’m just bewildered and overwhelmed, I’m just not going to do anything at all.” The study from the World Health Organization found a record number of young adults today are experiencing depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders, which stem from excessively high standards around personal achievement, appearance, and wealth. Finally, I’ll say there’s a 27-year longitudinal study by the American Psychological Association that found that perfectionism is at high. This is from data collected over three decades, and they found that rates of perfectionism have increased up to 33%. So this, of course, leads to depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, and he goes on and on.
One thing I will say that … sorry, so much research here. But one last study is that … this is from the Journal of Food Research, found that fad diets actually lead to increased levels of obesity, impairment of quality of life, low self-esteem, so on and so forth. So I think there’s many different sorts of ruts where we start to get down on our self. We get back into a circular pattern. We get into a habit. We get confused and then it just starts to feel pretty hopeless and we don’t know what to do.
My biggest personal rut and how I came out of it
I’ll share with you guys, probably the biggest rut that I felt is in the last few years, and I’ve shared this before, but through the lens of looking at it as a real rut, is when my mom passed away and it sort of blew up my world. Then shortly afterwards, I went through a big breakup, and I ended up moving out and being on my own for a while. It was a really tough period. I did feel that I was in a rut, in many ways, emotionally. I would go into my closet, I’ll cry, and be by myself. I just felt like just incredibly frustrated. It’s hard to put a word on it. I also felt like, “Oh my gosh, I’ve worked so hard, and I would set up all this stuff and I don’t know why my life could be falling apart.” There was a little bit of disbelief and a lot of sadness, a lot of crying. I’m sure there was some anger mixed in there too, but it definitely felt like a rut.
1st Step: Reset by connecting to yourself on the level of being
This gets into our topic today and my three-step process. The first step is reset. What I mean by reset is connecting to yourself on the level of being. So just being, breathing literally the essence of you, which we have to do first before we create inspiration and inspired doing or action steps. So let me explain what I mean by that. So when I was going through my rut, I met with this monk from the Self-Realization Fellowship and he’s someone I’ve called on for counseling time and time again, here and there. He’s actually this amazing monk. He’s been in my life for a while, and he’s the one that actually married Jon and I, not our secret court wedding, but our forward facing wedding with friends and family, so he’s a really special person to me.
What he said was take some months … months, he didn’t say days, he didn’t say a week, he said, take some months to reset yourself and treat your home like an ashram, really simplify, go back to your practice, which I’ll talk about in a second, and focus on yourself. I think when we are in a rut, we start to feel really focused on doing, and then we’re not doing as much as we think we should be doing, so we start to beat ourselves up. We feel bad about ourselves and it goes on and on and on. I will say that, that period for me I felt so good because I had defined a time period. Again, for you, it may just be two weeks, or a week, or a month, but for me it was about five months. And I just, whatever the time frame, I just knew that this was a period for me. That took the stress off, trying to like do so much, and go out and meet up with people, and do lots of dinners, just all this stuff that I get sometimes really caught up and busy with. It’s actually … This is applicable now. It was probably easier now because of quarantine and because of COVID and everything going on.
But for me a couple of years ago, it wasn’t like the easiest thing, but it was incredible. I just had … Like I said, defining that took the stress out of, “Oh my gosh, I need to run to this next thing or I should be figuring out.” So it should be doing, doing, doing. We get so obsessed with doing that when we’re not doing anything, we feel bad and we’re not doing enough, or we feel like we’re doing the wrong thing. That’s when we get into a tizzy. So the reset period, what I recommend is, if you’re in a rut, figure out a time frame, and it could be a week, or two weeks, or month, or whatever, longer, and think of this as your little incubation period. If it just feels like you are confused, you don’t know what to do, you don’t know how to eat, you don’t know how to take care of yourself anymore, I encourage you in this period to connect back to you and just simply being and breathing.
You can just focus on your breath. This is a great period for journaling, so I recommend taking out some paper, sitting with yourself. It could be really choppy at first and really hard to get out and really rough, but really thinking through your intentions, reconnecting to your purpose. Maybe that feels like the furthest thing from you right now, but you could sit with it, again, because you have this defined period. In this period, it means you could be working, you could be seeing people to an extent, but just think of it as a reset period where every day you’re thinking about just being and connecting back to your deepest self. In the journaling process, I recommend, even if it’s further away, you could just write down the sentence, “My purpose is …” or “I love …” or, “I care about this or this is what I want to create …” and you don’t know yet, but you’re starting to call it in. So there’s intention here, but it doesn’t take crazy amounts of action steps or energy. You don’t have to go out and learn to make 20 different recipes. You don’t have to find a new job tomorrow. You’re resetting, so you’re literally tuning back in. You’re literally thinking through your purpose again and your intentions and what you want to create. It’s really, really powerful. I definitely encourage you to write these down.
Psychologist Gail Matthews found in a 2015 study that when people wrote down their goals, they were 33% more successful in reaching them than those who mentally just noted them. We want to concretize our purpose and our intentions. We want to start pulling ourselves out of this kind of blah-mah feeling. So one of the ways to do that is to write our intentions, to start to connect with our purpose, to start to really think in this space, and put aside the judgment and the negativity and the “yeah, rights,” and just start to really think what would you like your life to be without the pressure of trying to create it now. Just this reset period is so amazing.
For me, I was starting to go back to the scriptures and I was reading Yogananda’s commentary on the Bible and the Bhagavad Gita and the Yogi Pradipika, and all of these … Charaka Samhita, these really ancient texts, which I actually really connect with and I really do love studying scripture. On one hand, “Oh, that’s not really related to what you’re doing,” but on the other hand, it just started to help me feel grounded. I started to feel the wisdom coming back through with this inspired reading.
Again, this was all part of the reset period where I wasn’t intentionally trying to do something else. When you’re in a rut doing more, can feel like that block. It can feel like the wall. Maybe you just can’t muster the motivation or the energy of the direction right now, and that’s okay. So the first step is just allowing yourself to reset, to write down, to think about your goals, just to ponder, to breathe, but it’s not doing nothing. Like this is, again, a period of so I want you to set a time frame and to think, “Okay, this is the first step of getting me out of the rut, and how am I going to use this time?” So, for me, those five months were just filled with a lot of solitude, a lot of reading, a lot of meditating, a lot of just time to breathe, and I came out on the other side incredibly strong and I felt a lot more clear.
I think that’s one of the biggest, biggest advantages of taking a reset is you can emerge with a lot more clarity. When we’re so focused on doing and running around and getting more done, we can confuse ourselves and we can get off track and we run in circles. So have that set period, just intentions, connecting with yourself, connecting with your purpose, letting yourself be and also ramping up energetically. You know the next phase is coming. So this is sort of like your warm up, your stretching period for the next part of our reset process, which is to breathe and to pick one simple thing in each of our Four Cornerstones, and to commit to it.
Here’s where we start to pull ourselves out of the rut a little bit more. It’s so fun. I was laughing because when I think of a rut, when I think of an actual physical image of it, I can’t help but think of the Sarlacc pit from the Star Wars because Bubby loves Star Wars, for some reason, even though he’s never seen them, but we do have a bunch of Star Wars books. I forget which one it is, Return of the Jedi, I think, where this pit is and then some of the window, covers, and like some of the characters had tried to climb out of this pit. So in this part of our process, we are starting to climb.
2nd Step: Setting positive intentions with each of our Four Cornerstones
The first part doesn’t look like we’re climbing, but we’re gathering the energy. We are setting the intentions. It’s a very important step that can’t be skipped. In this part, I want you to think a simple step in each of our cornerstones. So our four cornerstones are food, body, emotional well-being, and spiritual growth. The reason that I want you to pick a step in each of them is because time and time again, I’m shown consistently that a holistic approach and a multi-faceted approach like this is the way to really enact great change and sustained change. So if you’re just eating a little bit better for a while, but maybe you haven’t really started to tune into your emotions and your feelings and what got you into a rut in the first place, then the second you fall off track, the second you give into a food craving, you might just completely let go and completely fall off track, which isn’t something obviously that we want to happen.
By taking this approach, we are strengthening ourselves on all levels, and we can go forward in a much stronger way, one little step in each. So I want you to actually write down each … or I’d like to draw on a page as like across and each quadrant is one of the cornerstones. Write it down again, just like you did your intentions, and just think of one thing in each of your cornerstones. So a lot of people are like, “Oh, I’m in a rut. I’m just eating crap food. I’m eating junk food,” blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. So they may be like, “Oh, I just want to do this whole new diet and revamp my whole diet.”
Again, food is so connected, especially for us women with emotions and feelings and how connected we are to ourselves, which is our spirituality. So even though you may feel that your rut is in one particular area, or in the body area, maybe you haven’t worked out in like three months or five months since quarantine started, it’s not just focusing there, but maybe it’s having the centeredness to sit in meditation and to focus yourself and to simplify your life in that way, then you can go into these other areas.
No matter what your rut feels like to you, it’s very powerful to create inspired action, inspired doing in all of these areas, not full out, but one step in each of them, and then you will get better results. So, again, write in your quadrants. The food quadrant could be as simple as “I’m going to get back to making my GGS, my glowing green smoothie. I am going to cook dinner for myself three nights this week. I am going to drink my hot water with lemon and take my probiotics every morning,” whatever it is. Just pick one step. Supplements are sort of in the body category, but we can pair things together. That is also a really powerful practice is, if you’re already having your GGS, you can pair it with your probiotics. So you can start to stack wellness routines and steps, and that can help as well.
The body cornerstone, it may be, “Hey, after dinner, I’m going to do a 20-minute walk every day,” or “I’m going to do myself yoga practice every day even if it’s 10 minutes,” or “I’m going to take my probiotics every day.” Whatever it is, just picking one thing, one very doable action step. Nothing is too small. When we’re pulling ourselves out of a rut and we have felt beat down and exhausted, do not try to do the hardest thing. Do not try to say, “Okay, I’m going to cook this elaborate recipe every meal forever.” It’s better to start with small, simple steps. So there we are. Those are just some examples for the body one.
For the emotional well-being, I highly recommend journaling as a practice, five minutes a day so your step could be, “Hey, I’m going to, after I meditate or before I meditate, I’m going to focus on meditating for just, or writing in my journal for five minutes, having this free flow time, really spending that time for myself,” whatever it is. Other examples are participating in a really connected group. We have our private Facebook group, for instance, for our Solluna Circle. Of course, we have our podcast here, which I consider a really beautiful community. I think every … Solluna, just, I’m so grateful, we just attract really quality, really beautiful, kind people, and you see that across all the platforms on Instagram and online everywhere. So find a supportive community, tune in, find a friend. Emotionally, maybe you say, “I can carve out time to talk to a friend twice a week or three times a week or once a week,” whatever it is, but one step in emotional well-being.
Then the fourth cornerstone is spiritual growth. Here, this is a really, really important cornerstone for getting past a rut because, what is a rut? A rut is when we’ve just fallen off, and the reason we fall off and we feel powerless, we feel like we’re a victim, we feel like it’s really tough is because we disconnected to our full power, and to who we really are and that incredible unlimited light that’s inside of us. So, if anything, if you’re going to skip anything, please do not skip this spiritual cornerstone, which could look like meditation twice a day consistently. It could be spending time in nature, resetting, just anything that feels good to you. And, again, it’s a small step, so it could be, instead of saying you’re going to do a full hour-long meditation practice, maybe it’s just three minutes or five minutes to start, and that’s what feels doable to you right now and that’s great.
But I would like you to pick four little steps, again, so you can feel the holism of you. So you can feel this focus and this power building on one another and running through your entire life. So it’s not just when you sit down to eat a meal, or when you meditate in the morning, but it’s touching every part. It’s touching your body, and it’s touching your mind and your emotions and the spirit part of you, and, yes, the dietary part. I think that’s really important. Again, no step is too small.
3rd Step: Continue to build, to fully pull yourself out of a rut
Then the third step of our process for pulling yourself out of a rut is to continue to build. So once you have a little bit of a foundation, and so you’ve done a lot of the hard work in step one and step two, but you don’t want to just leave it there. You want to continue to fully pull yourself out of the rut. Like that last little bit where you pull … if you ever go swimming off the back of a boat, which we just did a couple of weeks ago on our road trip, pulling yourself finally fully out of the water, you’re on land. It’s just like that little bit of oomph. So you don’t want to just … you may be in a little bit more of a vulnerable phase if you’re just dangling there, so you want to continue to build, you want to continue to feel good, you want to continue with these inspired action steps, which will help you really strengthen, and re-energize, and re-inspire yourself, and feel like you are on strong footing, and you can continue to do your best, and to feel your best, and to get back on track with the amazing, beautiful energy that is you, that is who you are.
When I say build on what you have, you could, for instance, look at what you created in the last step, these baby steps and say, “Oh, well, my goal was to meditate once a day for five minutes. Now, I’m going to meditate twice a day for five minutes,” or, “Maybe I’m going to meditate twice today for 10 minutes.” It’s natural building process. You might’ve said, “Oh, well, I said I was going to have hot water with lemon, now when I continue building out my morning practice, I’m going to have hot water with lemon and glowing green smoothie in the morning.” Maybe for the body practice, it was, “I’m going to go for a 15-minute walk,” and maybe it’s, “Hey, I’m going to do a 45-minute walk or 30 minute, 20 minutes.”
The big thing here is that you need to feel good about taking that next step. It needs to be sustainable. It doesn’t have to be a doubling or tripling. It could be a slow build if that feels good to you, but what’s really important again with getting past a rut is consistency and doing it regularly and getting into that flow. There is so much you win by giving yourself little wins. Even making your bed in the morning, that makes me feel like I have accomplished this task. It feels really good, and then I’m like, “Oh, let me go downstairs and turn on the water and do all this stuff.” So it’s about getting yourself into that flow of back to creator and back to feeling good about achievement and it feels really, really, really wonderful. So there is no time frame, I will say for any of these steps, but I do think it’s important to check in and to keep the process moving.
In phase one, when we’re doing this reset period, from the beginning, I definitely recommend that you do have like a set time frame, something that you do create for yourself, minimum a week. I mean, a week’s actually quite short, but no, it depends on you. It depends on how deeply you feel this rut is, depends on how you start to get into it, and then you start to feel that call of inspired action come through you and maybe you want to move a little bit faster or get things done, so whatever. Just think about the reset period and then when it comes to picking one thing in each of the cornerstones of baby step and continuing, I definitely recommend that you stay in there for a month, at least in phase two, and the reason I say that is because all these different performance and habit experts say it’s 21 days, or 25 days, or 28 days to really establish a habit and to shift your lifestyle. I’ve heard all these different numbers, all somehow in the twenties range. So there’s something in there that must be right. It doesn’t really matter the exact day. But if you do a month and you’ve covered that already, and that way you feel again, solid, you feel that you’re making progress and it just feels really good to do it that way, so I would, again, recommend one month in phase two.
Then in the building part, this becomes life. Maybe you take some more steps and you stay in them for another month, and maybe you extend it beyond that, and you keep building and you keep really getting back on track. What’s amazing is I’ve seen … So Katelyn who you guys know she’s on here, I’ve seen her go through these phases. I’ve seen her go from, have gaining weight and then feeling like off, to baby steps of running a little bit, and then building on that, and establishing habits and feeling strong and fit in her body to the point where last year she did an Iron Man. She’s incredible. She’s won a couple marathon. So it just shows that when you get into this flow, and you start to build, and you keep yourself on track, that becomes inspiration for the next step.
If we sit here now, we think, “Well, how am I going to be where I am today?” and magically, it feels like a leap to where I’m doing all these different things, there’s this huge chasm. Is it “cha-sem” or “ka-sem”? I guess, I’m not sure. I guess I’ll say chasm. This gap, this space between where we are and where we want to be. I think when we project too much into the future, that’s when we start to get frustrated, we get into our head, we get confused, we kind of shut down, so don’t do that. Just think, first, “I’m going to reset, and I promise you that reset period where you connect to yourself and your power and your intention is so important, and that will set you up for success with the other steps.
Don’t skip that part. Really tune in, really think. Sometimes it takes hitting rock bottom to really re-evaluate, to let go of things that maybe weren’t serving you. Maybe you have to fully change direction and honor that. Like, that’s a really beautiful thing and there’s a big opportunity here, just like in many ways, society-wise. I say this with love and compassion because I know a lot of people are suffering greatly because of COVID. I know a lot of … There’s a lot of financial stress. There’s a lot of change, but the positive side of it is that it has been a reset for a lot of people, and the way that they work and the way that they interacted, the way they commute, all these different things are being we thought right now. So we know that there’s great power in putting aside time to reset, and so I definitely encourage you to do that as well with everything else.
Let me know how you do. Being in a rut is never fun for anyone, but if you look at it again as an opportunity to grow and to just feel your own strength and your own power, hopefully you will get through this and feel much stronger on the other side. That’s definitely what I wish and hope for you, and I send you all my love in that regard. So thank you so much for tuning in as always. I’m very grateful for you, for our community, for all the love that we have, that we get to share with one another.
Remember to please keep your questions coming. You can keep submitting your questions over at mysolluna.com/askkimberly or mysolluna.com. Now, I think there’s even a podcast tab, it makes it quite easy to submit your questions. There’s also daily inspiration for you over an Instagram, which is @_KimberlySnyder and also @Sollunabyks, which is our new Solluna Instagram, and over on the website itself, of course, which is mysolluna.com. All that being said, have a lovely, lovely day, a lovely week. We’ll be back here on Thursday. Remember to subscribe to the podcast if you haven’t yet already. That way, you don’t miss out on any episodes. Sending you lots of love. See you back here soon.