There are so many times in life we find ourselves in a holding pattern. Do you know what I’m talking about? Nothing is really happening in your life. Your job sucks. Your financial situation sucks. Your social life sucks. Maybe you wouldn’t say it sucks really, but it’s definitely boring and there’s no perception of real progress. What’s really going on here?
You might be waiting for that big break, that windfall of cash, that hot chick to come and ask you out. Let me tell you a secret: It’s not going to happen. Wait a minute! I can hear you screaming. I’m a talented guy or girl and I deserve it and I’m good-looking and fun, blah, blah, blah… You know what? Nobody cares!
Ouch. That kind of hurts, don’t it? Now, get over it. You have work to do. What I’m trying to tell you is that if you want something to happen to break you out of the excruciating holding pattern that life has become for you, you’re going to have to do it yourself.
That’s right. No one is going to do it for you. I know you already know that, but you have to really focus on this and make it a cause for action. If you want something good to happen in your life, if you want to make progress, you have to take action.
This is all about getting out of your comfort zone. This is a stretch for a lot of people because we all tend to stick with what we know, what feels safe. If this is how you feel and you hate it, here are the top 5 ways to break out of the holding pattern your life has become:
1. Go somewhere alone. Many of us don’t feel safe or secure doing things without other people. Maybe your significant other has moved on or is too busy to hang with you. Then do it yourself! Go see a movie or a band, go out to eat at a new place you’ve been wanting to try out.
2. Learn something new. Take a class at your local community college. Try something you’re not already good or experienced with, like golf lessons or learning to speak Italian or cook Indian food. It’ll give you a chance to stretch your horizons and meet new people who may be interested in some of the same things as you.
3. Talk to a stranger. Don’t be afraid to talk to people. Make a joke with the check out girl or the old guy in line ahead of you. Say hi to that cute girl or guy you keep seeing at the bookstore and don’t leave without an email address or phone number. Get over your fears of meeting new people.
4. Take risks professionally. Speak up in that meeting at work, volunteer for a project, stand up for yourself against an attack or unfair comment by a coworker. It’s time to start asserting yourself. This will help build your confidence to change the way you act which will change the way others act toward you and eventually change the way you perceive the world around you.
5. Start/stop a habit. For God’s sake, stop biting your fingernails! Stop doing those things that you hate that you do and start taking up habits that are good for you. If it’s a quick rush of something that makes you feel good for a couple minutes and then bad afterward, that’s a good sign that it’s not good for you. Build good, guilt-free habits. Start exercising each day and drop that soda and bag of chips you’re having at your desk every afternoon.
It may feel strange at first, but after some practice you’ll get used to it and really enjoy experiencing new things. The changes you want to see in your life have to come from the inside first and then move outward. Some of these things you’ll have to do alone at first, but over time others will notice your positive and exciting outlook on life and want to spend time with you.
Note: This post has been entered into ProBlogger’s latest Group Writing Project.