Let me open up to you guys for a sec. (Don’t worry; I’m not going to cry.) Working for yourself is undeniably awesome in a lot of ways and it was the number one thing I wanted in my career: The freedom, no asshole bosses, vacations when you want, working in pajamas (or nothing at all). But there are definite downsides: You feel like you’re never really on vacation, you literally LIVE at your office (if you work from home), and of course, that whole benefits/health insurance/taxes thing (FML). And while trying to attain goals, build a business/brand, thrive professionally, and stay organized with only yourself to push you can be rewarding, it can also be really exhausting. Sometimes, I just want to say F it and crawl into bed in the middle of the day (ok, so I have done that before), go to lunch and start drinking (maybe once or twice…), or hire an overbearing assistant to run my life (although that could end badly).
I wouldn’t trade it for anything (except maybe a job at Chelsea Lately), but I say this because I have those moments when I’m so mentally and creatively tapped out (as in ANY job) that I just dick around on Facebook/Buzzfeed/FamersOnly while my overwhelming to-do list sits there sans checkmarks. And let’s be honest with ourselves–our inspiration and genuine excitement to do/create something isn’t going to come to us while we’re stalking our crush or reading about the 67 best things from ’90s Nickelodeon television.
So these are some of the things I do to get my swag back. (I didn’t know I was going to type that phrase, but it just came out, so I think it’s meant to be.)
1. Sweat…like, really hard. Friends, you know it’s true–nothing gets the endorphins going like a tough, heart-rate-skyrocketing sweat sesh (this does include hot yoga, which I’m still terrified to try). Afterward, you’ll feel rejuvenated and ready to get back to crushing life.
2. Take a walk. Get the f*ck out of the house/office and let that fresh air fill your lovely lungs (or manly chest). A dog is a perfect excuse, but even if you’re sans canine, put on your kicks and hit the pavement. It doesn’t have to be long (that’s what she said) or intense–just enough time to clear your head. DO NOT bring your phone with you (those SnapChats can wait), and consider setting an intention for the stroll. I have figured out how to handle issues, come up with new story ideas, and basically wrote my entire, first standup routine whilst walking around my ‘hood. If you live near the ocean (bitch), walking along the water’s edge is the ultimate head-clearer. Take a dip and you’ll be back on the top of the world by the time you dry.
3. Shower. Even better if you actually need one. There is science behind why people come up with great ideas while lathering, rinsing, and repeating, but I’m no biologist. I just know I’ve written entire articles in my head while its under running water, and have to jet out of the shower, go straight to my computer in a towel (or not), and write that shit down before I forget.
4. Put on your favorite song and dance around like a total idiot. If you aren’t doing this AT LEAST weekly, you are missing out on a whole bunch of awesome. Not only does it get you up and moving, but your fave jam can make you happier than Miley on National No Pants Day. Basically, a foolproof recipe for instant funk-busting.
5. Call that person who never makes you feel stupid, always makes you feel awesome, and laughs at everything you say. (Oh hey, Mom.). You’ll be uplifted when you hang up. (Extra feel-good points if you tell them how important they are to you.)
6. IF you want to talk things out, dial that person who challenges you, asks questions, and pushes you to think harder and dig deeper. Just make sure you’re up for it or it might end in a dramatic “OMG, who asked you anyway!?” hangup.
7. Take a nap. You know when you’re running on E, so don’t ignore it, or you’ll end up passing out in a bush without your shoes, purse, or dignity (actually, I think there was alcohol involved when I did that). I don’t get a lot of sleep at night, so I’m a big fan of the 45-minute nap on occasion; it recharges you and get you thinking clearly again. Even if you lay down and only get 15-20 minutes of decent sleep, it can get you through the rest of the day without wanting to die. Same as your iPhone.
8. Drink (no, not alcohol, but that can work, too). Dehydration is the devil and most of the time, we’re not as hydrated as we should be, which leads to fatigue and cloudy heads. Get at least 16 oz. of water (standard bottle) and just chug the shit out of it. Your body will recognize the boost and your mental state will catch up soon after. A super-healthy juice (or five days of ’em) can also work wonders for your system, productivity, and energy level.
9. Take care of something. You know something has been bothering you–the friend you’ve been at odds with and just need to call, that painting you’ve been meaning to hang for three
days weeks, your chipping manicure you can’t stop picking at, the mysterious fees that showed up on your last Comcast bill and you need to call about, your brother’s birthday present you haven’t mailed yet…..from July (#guilty). It could be a minor thing, but it’s occupying space in your brain and could be stressing you more than you realize. Get it done, clear it out, and you’ll be ready to take on something new.
10. Laugh hard. I laugh…A LOT. But sometimes, a full day will almost go by and I’ll be like, “Wait, I haven’t had a hysterical laughing fit since yesterday!” What is happening?! That’s when I text or G-chat a friend with a random memory (or better yet, a selfie), and before I know it, I’m crying.
Or I go back and read/watch this.
And now I’m ready to take on the world.
Hope some of these tips help lift you out of any impending funks and get you feeling #swaggy, and if they don’t, then I guess that’s what alcohol was made for.
(PS, am I allowed to say swaggy as a white girl?)