We all go through periods of time when our minds seem to be working against us.
It could be anxiety or stress; an upcoming deadline or a big life change on the horizon that we can’t stop thinking about.
Sometimes, it’s just something simple that sticks with us, like a dirty look from the local barista who was having an off morning (maybe they even gave you decaf by “accident”).
Whatever it may be, once our minds burrow into something it can be tough to dig ourselves out.
But just because it’s tough doesn’t mean it’s impossible. With a little practice, digging ourselves out of a mental hole is as easy as picking the right shovel.
A Shed Full of Shovels
When it comes to getting out of a mental slump, we’ve got a lot of tools at our disposal.
Some tools might work really well for you, and some might need some sharpening. The point here is to find the right method for you. The best way to do that is through a little trial and error.
So the next time you notice yourself slumpin’, dig yourself out with one of the following techniques.
A Change of Scenery
One of the quickest ways to change your mindset is to change your surroundings.
We spend a good chunk of our time in the same place; the same office, the same desk, the same chair. This can cause a mental slump in itself.
Remember reorganizing your room as a kid? It felt like a whole new world full of possibilities.
As humans, we have an innate need for variety. When we give in to that need, it fuels our creativity, productivity, focus, and sense of wellbeing.
This doesn’t mean you have to book a vacation every time you feel a little stuck. Simple fixes like going for a short walk or moving your desk to the other side of the room can really help.
If you are working from home, try working in a different room, or even outside for a bit if possible. You can even add some indoor plants to your desk, just don’t forget to water them.
Creatively change up your scenery however you can, it may be the push you need to get out of your mental slump.
One of the fastest and most effective ways to change our mindset is to change our breathing pattern.
The way we breathe directly affects our brain chemistry. Even a short breathing exercise, 5 or 10 minutes, can reset our mood, improve our focus, and lead to feelings of wellbeing.
A great technique for this is box breathing. There’s a reason this technique is used by Navy Seals, first responders, and athletes.
It focuses the mind, relieves stress, and provides a much-needed reset.
Best of all, you can do it literally anywhere and it’s totally free.
Try this guided exercise the next time you feel a mental slump coming on.
If you can’t move yourself to a different place and breathing isn’t your thing, it’s time to try shifting your attention.
Think of this technique as an internal scenery shift. It comes with all the same benefits and you can do it anywhere.
This method may require the most practice, but it can also be the most powerful.
We’ll walk you through it in this guided exercise.
Knowing when and how to switch things up is mental hygiene 101.
It’s a necessary tool for all of us to learn in order to live our most fulfilled, happy, and productive lives.