Lately, I’ve been going through some major life changes. I’m talking about switching career paths, ending a nearly five-year relationship, and moving across the country—all at once. To say that this has been an overwhelming experience would be an understatement. As I’ve been navigating the changes as they come, I’ve found myself more in “survival” mode than normal.
Many of the things I love to do, my mental health, and my physical well-being have been put on the back burner while I’ve tried to stay afloat. Think circa 2020 when we were all just trying to get by, understand how the world was changing, and simply take things day by day. We were living on autopilot, and maybe some of you, like me, have stayed in that stagnant place for a little too long.
Now that I’m starting to feel more settled in a new routine, I’ve decided it’s time to regain control of my life. It’s important to me that I craft a better future for myself. I want to start chasing my goals once again. Like everything in life, that’s easier said than done. I’ve realized it will take a lot of effort to get back on track. While I’ve needed to give myself grace the last few months, I know it’s time to hit the ground running. Here’s exactly how I plan to get it together this fall:
1. Join a personal development group
The easiest way I’ve found to stay in a slump is to try to get out of it on my own. As human beings, we need community, support, and genuine connections. This is exactly what Topknot was able to provide me.
If your best friend were also an affordable life coach who encourages you with forward-thinking and tangible ways to achieve your goals, you’d have Topknot. Their goal is to be an affordable alternative to one-on-one life coaching, where you meet with other women in a personal development club to discuss ways to achieve your goals.
Ever since my first Topknot session, I have been obsessed. I’ve left each one feeling energized and motivated. Before the first session, Topknot asked me to provide a goal. In my case, I chose to advance my career. Topknot matched me with another individual with a similar goal. For 40 minutes, she and I discussed the issues that have held us back from achieving our goals. We also discussed tangible ways to overcome the setbacks and strategic timelines for measuring success.
The Topknot website guided the discussion for us, strategically offering discussion points that allowed us to come to the conclusions we did. Maybe the most impressive part of the session was that you were given the option to add alerts from their website to your personal calendar. These alerts remind you to work on the action steps you previously set.
Through the support of my personal development group members, the constructive conversation I had with my partner, and the accountability aspects of Topknot, I’ve achieved real day-to-day progress. The best part? It is a low-cost, hassle-free platform for women who want to invest in personal growth. Interested in learning more? Click here to start a free trial membership of Topknot Time and start slaying your goals today.
You’ve probably heard us talk about journaling more than once. (I think that just shows how important it is not to let your thoughts consume your brain.) As a writer, it may seem like journaling would come easy to me. But truthfully, as much as I love to write, putting my thoughts and feelings down on paper was—and still is—something I have to work on. Likewise, you don’t have to be “good at writing” to take up journaling.
The great thing about journaling is that no one but you has to read it. As the ultimate act of self-care, think of it as a quiet time to be with yourself and your thoughts. Instead of having thoughts racing around in your mind all day, give those words home on a piece of paper. One of the things I’ve loved most about taking up journaling is that it’s helped me sleep better. It used to take me so much longer to fall asleep because I would stay awake thinking. I would think about my to-do list, all of the upcoming changes, and everything else that was worrying me. Leaving everything on the page before bed gives me a solid reason not to have all these thoughts when it comes time to lie my head down.
3. Go to the gym
It’s no secret that regular exercise can make you feel good. Your brain is literally releasing “happy” chemicals. After being in what felt like survival mode for months, my physical health turned for the worst. I wasn’t eating well, and my workout routine was almost nonexistent. And if there’s one thing that can kick you while you’re down, it’s not feeling confident in your own skin.
While I pay very little attention to the number on the scale, the effects of not prioritizing my physical health were showing in most aspects of my life. I was feeling extra tired and lacking motivation. And, to be honest, when my clothes didn’t fit as well as they used to, I felt uncomfortable in my skin.
Making the commitment to exercise regularly was something that I needed to do. The beauty of getting into a fitness routine is that it can be ever-changing. One day I’ll feel super motivated and take a high-intensity workout class. On other days when I need a slower pace, I can opt for a more meditative yoga session. For me, getting out of the house and spending time moving my body means starting to feel better in my skin again and improving my mental health exponentially.
4. Reprioritize old hobbies
While dealing with several life changes simultaneously, the things I once enjoyed had to be put on the back burner. One hobby that hurt me to lose was reading. I’ve loved reading all my life. So, seeing that become less and less of a priority was a hard pill to swallow.
To get myself back on track, I decided to reprioritize this hobby that I love. First, I got a library card, which made it significantly easier to read more because I’m not spending $15-20 per book. Then, I set aside time in my days specifically for reading. I even started a bookstagram. Getting back into a hobby I love has been like reconnecting with an old friend. It’s just what I’ve needed to start to feel like “me” again.
Even if you don’t already have a hobby you love, there’s no better time to start exploring your options. The great thing about hobbies is that they give you something to focus on. When you prioritize a new activity, you show yourself that you can be motivated. And the first time you do something successfully in your hobby, you will get feelings of accomplishment that can accompany you throughout the rest of your daily life.
5. Say “yes” more
There’s nothing like your comfort zone to keep you in a stagnant place. One of the most rewarding decisions I’ve made lately is choosing to say “yes” when opportunities arise—even when it means leaving the comfort of my couch and favorite TV show (The Vampire Diaries, obviously).
For instance, I was recently invited to a golf event with about 45 people. Of those 45, I personally knew four of them. Oh, and I had never golfed a day in my life. Do I sound unhinged for saying yes to this event? Probably. But I also am so glad that I did. As it turns out, golf is pretty fun, and I wasn’t as bad at it as I thought. On top of that, I was able to meet so many people who were all incredibly nice and welcoming. I even made a few actual friends out of the experience.
All that to say, good things happen when we step out of our comfort zones. A great way to get out of a slump is to make yourself do things—even an activity that is nearly foreign to you—and spend time with other people.
This post contains a sponsored inclusion of Topknot, but all of the opinions within are those of The Everygirl editorial board.