The 5 Things You Should Do to Reset When You're Feeling Stuck

Have you ever felt like you desperately just needed a reset button? Like when something in your day goes wrong, or you’ve been unproductive, and your schedule is thrown off. All you want is a second chance to do it right and to get things done.

For me, I always get the urge to just go to bed. I’m a total morning person and mornings reset me. But what if it’s noon? Or if there’s still a lot you need to get done? Going to bed isn’t an option and you need something that will bring you out of your funk. So in this post, I want to share with you a few things that you can do when you need a RESET.

Oh and, psst, here are the rest of the posts from the Bliss Bean March self care series! 

13 Ways to Show Yourself Love (Self Care Ideas) 
1: How I Deal with Perfectionism  + 28-day Self Care Challenge
2: 50 MORE Self Care Ideas for Total Wellness  
3: 23 Resources (Books, Websites, Videos & more) to Continue your Self Care Revolution
4: The Cost of Perfectionism - My Journey pt. 1 (through 10th grade)
5: The Cost of Perfectionism - My Journey pt. 2 (junior year + changes)
6: you're reading it!

1. Talk to someone

I’m putting this first because I think that going out into the world widens your perspective. When we’re working hard on homework, our jobs, blogging, etc. (the grind never stops) our perspective shrinks. For hours we’ve been looking at the same room, same computer, doing the same things. Our problems feel magnified because they are all we see. If we take the time to talk to people, we realize that, yes, the world is still turning even though to us it feels like the day is irreversibly ruined!

When I need to talk to someone, I usually just go downstairs to talk to my family. If you live alone, it can be a bit harder. You could go on a walk. I’m not saying you need to go up to everyone you meet on your walk and become best buddies with them, but just seeing other people will help. The idea is the same. You see that life goes on, and you can go on, too!

Harder: Go out and talk to a family member or friend face-to-face.
Medium: Call up a friend and have a quick conversation to catch up.
Easier: Go outside for a quick walk.

2. Fresh air

I think we all intuitively know that being outside invigorates us. So, you probably don’t need me to bust out any science but HERE IS IT ANYWAYS: According to a 2010 study in the Environmental Science & Technology journal, it only takes 5 minutes of being outside to get a mood-boosting effect. Alright, are you convinced? 

Harder: Go outside for a quick walk or a jog. Preferably, don’t listen to anything and allow your mind a little bit of quiet space.
Medium: Step outside for a few minutes.
Easier: Open a window wherever you are working. Even if it’s cold. You can close it after a minute, but the cold will invigorate you!

My Perfectionism Story (School Years) Date (YYYYMMDD) (5 of 5).jpg

3. Exercise

This morning I was at Turbo Kick. It was omgmylegsburn HARD. Near the end, we were doing this move called “fire throws” (which is hard to describe but you sort of go side to side, throwing your arms toward one side and bringing the opposite leg up). Basically, it’s super cathartic. The teacher yelled at us (in the most encouraging way) to throw away whatever was bothering us. I immediately thought of the unproductive day I’d had. Her words struck a chord, and I threw away my negative thoughts with all of my strength.

And you don’t need to physically act out throwing away your bad mood in order to get a benefit from exercise (if you feel silly doing that), because all exercise releases endorphins, and endorphins make you feel goooood. Plus, it gives your mind a chance to focus on something not work-related!

Harder: Go to the gym or find a home workout you can do. If you’re having trouble finding the motivation, go to a group class or invite a friend to exercise with you.
Medium: Do the 7-minute workout.
Easier: Quick! Do 15 jumping jacks, 10 pushups, 15 squats, and 5 burpees. How do you feel?
Also easier: Do a headstand. You definitely have to activate your core, so it’s physically challenging, but there’s also just something about getting upside down that is so refreshing. I do it whenever I take a break from homework. It’s not weird, I promise!!

An actual entry from my journal and partly the inspiration for this post :)

An actual entry from my journal and partly the inspiration for this post :)

4. Journal

Sometimes when you’re feeling stuck you just need to have a good talk with yourself. And while you could just sit down and talk to yourself (which is actually beneficial) it can help to have it down in writing. It forces you to slow down in your thinking and dump all of your thoughts out in a tangible way. So get out your journal and just start writing. Need a journaling prompt? HERE’S ONE: “Man, today I feeI like sh*t...” :)

I usually like to list out how I’m feeling and what is bothering me. Then I make a written game plan for what I’m going to do next, and give myself a pep talk. Honestly, never underestimate the power of giving yourself a pep talk. 

Easier: There is no "easier". Just do it. Seriously.

5. Recognize when it’s time to throw in the towel

Sometimes you try it all but you just feel spent. Mentally, physically, or even both. In that case, the best thing to do is to just give yourself permission to relax. And I totally realize how hard that is, I do. It’s hard to tell if you’re really too tired to keep going, or if you could crank out another to-do if you just “got yourself together”. 

If you’re having trouble letting go, try doing it with intention. Don’t just plop down in front of the TV mindlessly but instead make a decision about what you’re going to do to relax, why you’re going to do it, and if you’ve got a busy day ahead of you and really feel like you need to, the amount of time that you will spend relaxing. 

The process of resetting is really personal. Things that one person finds relaxing can make another person grumpy. Like baths. I don’t know why, I've tried bath bombs, bubbles, books, music, I just can't "bathe". So that's why I tried to include only very open-ended tips on here, but what do I know? Maybe you absolutely hate the outdoors and you can’t stand the smell of fresh air. Please, if that is the case for you, don’t listen to tip #2. You do you.

So as you’re journaling, try and make note of what works for you and what doesn’t. Did you go do cartwheels in your yard and now you feel amazing? Well, what are you doing sitting around here for?? Go do more cartwheels in your yard!

But in all seriousness, it’s important to have a plan. Because while this all may seem easy right now, the times when you need a reset are often the times when it’s most difficult to take the time to actually do one. I would suggest writing these steps on a notecard or something, and pinning them to your wall (and by that I mean your real, physical wall and not your Pinterest board). 

And remember - we ALL (literally all of us, please e-mail me if you are an exception because I would love to learn from you) feel stuck sometimes. The most important thing to remember? Maybe the thing I should have put as the #1 tip if it weren’t so gosh darn simple? Remember that IT IS OKAY.

It’s okay.

What do you do when you feel stuck?

Happy Sunday x

The Cost of Perfectionism - My Journey pt. 2 (Junior Year + Changes)

Hey y'all,

(I never say hey y'all in real life... funny)

Anyways so yes, here is a blog post, delivered to you on a Thursday (NOT a Sunday, gasp), and that is simply because when I was writing this blog post it ended up being so gosh darn long that I decided to split it into two parts. It split very nicely between my last post, which was a summary of how perfectionism has impacted my life in different ways from when I was little up until recently.

Today, I want to share you with you the missing piece. The part about where I am now, junior year. Things are a lot different now and it makes sense for it to be in a separate post. As I will elaborate on, I think my perfectionist side will always be a part of me, but I've really been able to keep it from impacting my life too much this year. In what was a really deep sort of journaling session for me, I explain what has changed that has made it this way. I hope you find something relatable in this blog post, and that you enjoy reading...

11th grade

Whew, we're on to junior year.

Junior year found me really getting my sh!t together in terms of time management, taking charge of my own happiness, and also investing time into what makes me ME.

Now, the year sure wasn't (and isn't) perfect. These days, when my inner perfectionist tries to creep out of the corner I keep driving it into, it manifests itself as this little bugger that is always examining whether I'm being productive, whether I'm working on the most important thing, whether I'm making the BEST possible use of my time.

So perfectionism is a beast I still haven't tamed. BUT I can say with confidence that where I am now in terms of managing it is the best I've ever been in my life. Let's examine why:

1. I've established healthy eating and exercise habits.

I have a better relationship with my body and am much more willing to give it rest (especially when I'm on vacation). Learning how to simply enjoy exercise has provided me with a stress outlet, a fun way to spend my free time, and a confidence boost.

2. I've gotten so much better at doing less work for school.

Yikes, don't show this to my teachers. But honestly, I realized that it didn't make sense to strive for perfection if a 90% (89.5% to be exact) constitutes an "A". I've been realizing where I'm putting all of this unnecessary effort. For example, in freshman year, I confused my finals schedule and went into my history final having done no reviewing. I still got a near-perfect score. This year, I didn't study one bit for a math quiz and got 100%. School is no longer the focal point of my life because it no longer makes SENSE for it to be the focal point. I have figured out how to manage my time in class wisely and I now have a lot more time to set aside towards my passions.

3. I've dropped things that no longer serve me.

I'd spent most of my life trying to do ALL the things. And then I got a taste of the liberating feeling of saying "no" to things. First, I dropped orchestra, which no longer got me excited and took up a whole credit. Then, for my junior year schedule, I decided to opt for the easy history class over AP US History. I'm convinced it's the best decision I made all of last year. When faced with putting together a senior year schedule, I first dipped my toe in by deciding to take AP Stats instead of a college math class, then went all-in and decided to not take any math at all. And I am SO excited. Instead, I am taking a semester of Photo 2 and a full year of Video 2 and that just makes my heart happy. Soon, I'll be faced with a big decision about dropping something else that has been a big part of my life, which I'll talk more about once I make that decision.

4. I jumped headfirst into my passions.

Whereas sophomore year I felt very unfulfilled by what I was doing, junior year has been the total reverse. I have a communications internship, I lay out the school newspaper, I've opened myself up to opportunities to make videos, I STARTED THIS BLOG (I just went and took a peek at my first blog post, hahaha). These are all things I wouldn't have thought I could make time for, but I did, and thank goodness I did.

5. I've started on the path to a future that is right for me.

If there's anything that a perfectionist knows very well, it's that very nicely drawn out plan of perfect grades, well-rounded extracurriculars, standardized tests, college applications, university, career. It's what we have been promised by our teachers and counselors all along. Do well in school and this life will be yours! *cue game show lights and sound effects* Now, I am not saying that this is the wrong way to go. There IS no wrong way to go because everyone's life is different.

But dropping my perfectionism made me realize that this was not the path I wanted to take. I'm very early in the journey, but I can see my future more clearly than I have ever before. I know I want to take a gap year to travel, and I want to find ways to support myself financially using my creative passions and the Internet. The thought of that truly lights my soul on fire and gives me the energy I need to enjoy every day and every week of my life.

6. I spend more quality time with myself and the people I love.

Journaling has been a lifesaver for me. It's a way to empty my mind and to have a conversation with myself, in a way. We all need a pep talk sometimes and sometimes you need to be the one that gives yourself that pep talk. So I've learned to spend some quality alone time that rejuvenates me when I'm feeling scattered.

My family has established a Sunday family night routine that relaxes me before the beginning of each new week, and I'm more open to things like spontaneous trips to the sledding hill.

I have friends in my life whom I can't wait to see after a few days apart because being around them makes me SO happy. We support each other and give each other advice and perhaps most importantly, we make each other laugh, so so hard.

At the center of all of this? Self-care. Because these things didn't happen on accident. They happened slowly, but they happened because I willed them to happen. I actively worked to fight my eating problems. I worked to start this blog. I made the decision for myself to cut out things that weren't serving me anymore. So yes, self-care is chamomile tea and evening walks and good books. But self-care is also taking charge of our own lives and making sure we build an existence that gives us happiness and fulfillment.

I know this is a deeper post than what I normally write. But I think it's important not only so that you can get to know who I really am, but for me to pull together all of these things I know about myself into one story, in a way I never have before.

I thank you for joining me on this March journey of self-care and wish you all the happiness in the world. Go out there and be amazing :)

How have you changed throughout your life that has put you on the path to where you want to be?