For the past 5 days, I had been feeling like garbage
I’d get a decent amount of sleep but wake up exhausted. My workouts were uninspired. And every time I’d sit down to start writing at night, the words I typed were wasting the digital space they occupied.
At about 11:00 on Friday morning (Day 5), I made a decision. Instead of just accepting this constant feeling of ‘blah’ – I decided to take action.
It would’ve been easy and uncomplicated to just sit in my office’s break room for 30 minutes, eat lunch, then proceed with this worse-than-vanilla feeling for the rest of my Friday. But I’ve seen what the easy road can get you and I’m done buying.
Lately, I had taken the stance of Sisyphus
Have you heard the phrase: “the journey is the destination?” Well, Sisyphus put that phrase on the map well before it was cool to do so (although the story tells us it wasn’t by choice).
For a lifetime of trickery and ultimately a crime against the gods, Sisyphus was condemned to a sentence of hard labor. He was ordered to push a boulder up a mountain, which was a logistically impossible task because: gravity would rule and eventually send the boulder crashing down from the hillside. So Sisyphus would start again.
“How long was this sentence,” You ask? Oh, no big deal… Just for eternity.
So, I imagine that Sisyphus would either crack and go crazy or he’d become satisfied and comfortable in his task. He’d really dive in and devote himself to working hard. To sharpening his axe, so to speak. And eventually, though he’d be the best damn and most content boulder pusher in all the land.
Me – I’ve tried to own my journey and forget about the destination
Lately, I’ve taken great joy in the daily grind that life can throw at you. With regular workouts, multiple jobs, household responsibilities, and my family – sure I could whine and complain that I’m too busy. And that would infect the precious time with my fam or my workouts (which had been happening for these past few days).
But that’s no way to live life. At least to thrive living life. To give it every last ounce of effort – of love – of joy. So, as I noticed myself in this self-pitying rut, I had to recenter myself mentally. And I knew that I had to shock the system out of complacency and back into Sisyphus-icy (a real word…? Not important…).
Because this period of “journey” is soooooooo much longer than time spent at the actual destination
It would be criminal to choose to mentally submit and on the journey. “Own the journey!” is what I told myself. “Because many are not as fortunate as you to have so many blessings and opportunities. Thrive! Live!”
So on that Friday at 11:00 that’s exactly what I chose to do
Luckily for me, I keep an extra set of workout clothes and a towel at work, and I’ve always got some tennis shoes in the trunk. I grabbed my stopwatch, set it for 25 minutes, and told the boss I was heading out for lunch.
I ran to nowhere specific for 25 minutes. No music, no thoughts, just one foot after the other. To clear my head from all the clutter, negative thoughts, and excuses. I ran hard. And at the end of my run, when the alarm sounded – I walked back up the steps to my office, headed to the shower, and felt the joy returning.
The blood was flowing back through my veins, the endorphins were flying, and the creative juices had returned. My outlook had completely flipped in 25 minutes! No longer was I stuck in the negative complacency rut – I was back to my Sisyphus-icy and it felt so good!
I hopped out of that shower, threw my work clothes back on, and proceeded to have an amazing close of the work week. Then I went home to my family with a smile on my face and a new outlook on the work that awaited me that evening. The rut was broken and happiness returned.
It didn’t take an act of God to snap out of this rut. All it took was 25 minutes and some physical activity…
I want YOU! to consider this story the next time you’re stuck in neutral
I’m not just over here beating my chest because it feels good. No. I want you to use this approach the next time you’re feeling down – in a rut – or kind of blah. Grab a stopwatch, set it to 25 minutes, and just get active! Do something. Run, take a bike ride, walk the dog, search YouTube for a workout video, or choose one of my 7 ways to workout for free. The “what” is irrelevant.
Embrace your inner Sisyphus-icy and smile through the challenge. Get lost in your workout for 25 minutes without thought of the day’s tasks or stressors that await you after the workout. Just give yourself 25 needed minutes of self-care to reset and recenter.
And when that alarm sounds in your ear – wipe the sweat from your forehead, feel the endorphins running through your veins, and smile. Because you’ve just taken back control of your day… And your journey has now become your destination once more. Live it – Love it – Thrive in it!
Thanks for reading!
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