I don’t always feel inspired. Lately, I haven’t felt inspired at all.
I know this blog is all confetti and pink, but that doesn’t mean I’m not just as vulnerable to the mean reds as the next girl (Oh Holly, you know us so well). I want to be a person that encourages you, and I don’t believe I can do that without being real. And being real means telling you that it’s been tough getting out of bed for the last several weeks.
Last week I shared here about how I lost my sweet kitty in early April, which totally threw me for a loop. That sudden loss combined with the exhaustion of the last chunk of the school year left me feeling anything but inspired, hopeful, or ambitious.
As a creative person feeling uninspired is just about the worst thing that can happen, and for me it means lots of sleeping, lots of procrastinating, and lots of geez-I-wonder-if-I-will-ever-actually-achieve-anything-other-than-binge-watching-The-Handmaid’s-Tale.
Whether you’re a lawyer or a kindergarten teacher, a nurse or an accountant, we all go through periods of time when inspiration is as elusive as those weird muse statues.
Thankfully, I had DFWCon in Dallas this weekend. And you guys, I feel amazing. I feel hopeful. I feel joyful and ambitious and grateful. I feel inspired. Why?
You need those things if you’re going to get out of your rut. Here’s 5 ways to do it!
Go to a conference in your field, your passion, or your personality.
Go be around your people. For me, it’s writers. You can read all about my book here and here, and all about my big dreams and grand plans. It’s easy to lose sight of those when you’re feeling uninspired, which is why I think you should go to a conference. A sweet friend of mine who sells LipSense recently went to the Senegence National Conference and I can see her in pretty face how invigorated she is.
I met so many incredible writers, agents, bloggers, and editors this weekend. I saw writers I’d followed or that I’d met at past conferences. We talked books and blogs, sat in writing classes, and got to pitch our hopes and dreams to people who just might help us reach them. I needed this so much; I needed to remember what makes my heart sing, where I envision my life going, and that there is more to my world than being a tired teacher who misses her cat (say that with a straight face).
If you’re a creative, there’s a conference out there for you. If you’re not a creative, find something in your industry or in the industry you WANT to be in. There are conferences about making things happen, entrepreneurship, home decor, blogging, parenting, and virtually anything else you can think of. Go learn some things, get out of your every day routine, and be reminded of why you love whatever it is that you love.
Most importantly, go be with your people. The ones that value what you value and are fighting your same good fight. Go be with your people. And if you can’t do that, then-
Go on vacation.
I firmly believe you can make this happen on virtually any budget. If you have the means to do something amazing, like the beach, mountains, or something international? Girl. Do it. Do it for me.
But if that’s not in the cards for you, go on a weekend road trip that IS in your budget. Go visit a friend in another city. Cruises are often quite cheap during some parts of the year, so you might even be able to make that work. Last spring I had planned on taking a solo trip, but the months leading up to it were so wild that I was never able to sit down and book it. So I packed a bag and stayed two nights at a swanky hotel downtown, just me. I watched movies and read books and ordered room service more than once. It was way cheaper than anything else and didn’t require any fussy travel plans.
Get away from your world for a bit, and see what happens!
Start a new project.
Starting a new project means something different for all of us; for me it’s planning a new book, writing a blog series, or redecorating a room in my house.
(Or buying more office supplies from Target than I could ever possible need, but whatever.)
Start something new. Don’t completely drop whatever has you stuck, but ask it to ride in the backseat for a bit while you catch a breath of fresh air. It could be a new project at work, that blog you’ve been thinking about forever, finally learning to cook, or that extra room in your house that’s begging for some beauty. Just make sure it’s a project. Something you can sink your teeth into.
Bonus if it’s work related, bonus if it’s joy related (see what I did there?).
Get a brand new haircut.
On a whim two weeks ago I called my salon an hour before school got out and begged them to fit me in that day.
“Alright Miss Pradhan, but I have in the books that you were just in a for a trim a few weeks ago?”
“Yeah I know. It’s an emergency.”
“Like, a gum emergency?”
“No like a soul emergency.”
They fit me in that same afternoon and I gleefully told my stylist to take off 4 beautiful inches. And the nice lady on the phone didn’t even make fun of me when she put a face to the girl who told her she was having a soul emergency.
(I may or may not have done something similar after a breakup four years ago, but who’s asking?)
Anyway, I think this one is self-explanatory. Hair is magical. New hair holds infinite possibilities. Do something new/different, and try to tell me you don’t feel better.
Don’t let it go on forever.
I know this may feel somewhat obligatory, but I mean it from my heart. If feeling uninspired turns into your feeling all-around unhappy, if you have a hunch that it’s more than just a rut, then don’t be afraid to ask for help. Who in the world hasn’t dealt with depression before, anyway? If you just can’t shake the feeling, or have no idea why you’re not interested in stuff that normally makes you light up, then you owe it to yourself to address it. Okay? You owe it to yourself. Don’t let it drag on forever.
I hope you have a lovely, inspiring week.