Tuesday, January 11, 2011

In a Rut

Have you ever felt as though you're in a rut? With your work? Self? Routine?

Being snowed in has wedged me into a rut. Three days of not leaving my apartment and studying non stop for a final on Friday have made me feel...claustrophobic.

Rut warning signs:

-Sleeping in (and sporadically...hello, inefficient naps)
-Refreshing those same pages on the Internet
-Staring at pages of text and brain scans without absorbing anything
-Scanning through my novel from beginning to end, beginning to end, beginning to end...

These sentiments are eerily parallel to when I hid from society to study for the MCAT. To prevent my spirit, thoughts, and attitude from becoming stale, I unveiled a few things that have helped me:

-Going outside and walking to the grocery store (we Southerners aren't prepared for the snow so most people aren't driving yet). The cold air rattled me back to life and it was oddly cathartic to stomp through the snow.

-Cleaning up my own work space. The more cluttered my room is, the more cluttered my mind feels.

-Looking at pretty things....sometimes, the more I study things like blood vessels and medications, the more I crave aesthetically pleasing pictures:

Dreamy entrance

Feminine, whimsical desk

-Getting a little dressed up. This is yet another reason why I admire people who work from home. All I would do is wear sweat pants and a sweat shirt and stay in bed. (I would not accomplish anything besides marathons of Food Network shows.)

-To get out of my writing rut: I expand my reading: different news sources, books in unexplored genres, song lyrics, poetry, etc.


  1. Getting like minds together also really helps a writing rut because you have people to bounce things off of. Also, if you are really stuck, I find it helps to reread a few of your childhood favorites; it tends to get you thinking on different levels and can generate more work than one might expect.

    As far as life ruts, it is always a good idea to get out of the house or connect with a person that always inspires/encourages you.

    I hope you get out of your rut soon! We'll see what I can do about mine. LOL

  2. Oh, I sooo agree with the more cluttered the work/living area the more cluttered my brain feels. Sometimes I have to stop and straighten everything up so I can concentrate.

    My poor little Southern friends, not knowing how to cope with the nastiness of snow.

  3. I hear ya!

    I know I'm in a rut when I sleep in and when I spend too much time blogging or browsing things to buy online.

    Hope you're out of your rut soon! The snow can't last forever....

  4. Walks and exercise help me to clear my head. So does guitar playing.
    Getting out of a rut involves doing something out of the ordinary with my wife. (And no, sex is NOT out of the ordinary, although I never object to that option!)

  5. LOL As I sit here in my sweats and T-shirt I wonder if I'm in a rut--no, don't think so except for my outfit!!

  6. At one time I rode my bike to the grocery store. I loved it! It wouldn't be nearly as easy to hop on a bike with my two-year-old. :)

  7. Oh my goodness... I think I've been in a rut for the last 4 years! But you're right...it gets especially bad when the snow hits :(

    Usually taking a walk, watching a movie, reading a good book, or WRITING helps. I think writing really helped to pull me out of the rut quite a bit... not completely out yet, but getting closer!

    I hope you're out of your rut soon! :)

  8. Aw, thanks! I think taking this final will help a lot.

  9. I've been in a rut for a while now too. The snow DEFNITELY doesn't help. We got almost 2 feet of snow the day after Christmas, and it is currently snowing again (they predict anywhere from 8-16 inches for this storm!!!!). I am ready for winter to be over already :(

    Good luck on your final!

  10. This comment has been removed by the author.

  11. I was in a rut some time back, but now I am out of it. I work out like crazy, go for long walks, read books and listen to music to clear the cobwebs inside my head.

    Hope you get out of your rut soon.

    All the best for your final!!

  12. it's all too easy to fall into a rut. like you said, though, fresh air and touching something beautiful does it for me too.

  13. Ruts are hard. I like what you've done for yourself and to change things up. Getting a little dressed up for even a day of work at home--which is where I work, always makes a difference. I can take myself more serious!

    As for your book comment--I haven't read or heard anything about The Space Between Us. I should look it up. I would like to read Committed, though. I really enjoyed Eat, Pray, Love.

    Have a wonderful day, Cassie

  14. Know how you feel re. rut. I am suffering cabin fever from all the snow where I live.

    Ye reading helps to escape ... Best of luck for Friday and your final :)

  15. Those little refresher breaks really help! Sometimes just a walk does wonders.Good luck on getting over your rut!

  16. I have really enjoyed your visits to my blog -- thanks for stopping by with your great comments. Exercise is a great way to break out, but I don't do it as nearly as often as I wish I did. Still, something is better than nothing. Dare I admit, though, that I read while working out? *sigh* It's hard to get away from work, I'm finding. Keeping a schedule of meeting with friends, my Bible studies, etc. are other ways I deny these ruts too much power. :)

  17. Honey, January does the same thing to me! I've been making similar commitments to myself (getting outside, even though it's freezing, and putting a little more effort into my appearance) to help me break out too.

  18. I can definitely sympathize with you how feel; being in a rut can sap at your energy and leave you feeling tired and listless. Cleaning and organizing and looking at pretty pictures (especially of gorgeous interior designs) definitely help!

    Good luck!

  19. I SO need to do this. Ironic, I just commented on this over at Laurel's Leaves, but I HAVE to clean my work area! Don't wanna, don'twanna don'twannadon'twanna....

  20. Oh, I hate ruts. And unfortunately I get stuck in them all the time. Right now, for example, we're broke, I can't yet get a job (apart from writing, that is) and it's so cold, so I don't go out much and find myself stuck in a stay-at-home-and-find-things-to-do rut. But looking at pretty things and reading new stuff does help!!

  21. Looking up pictures that might be related to my characters or their story really helps me get back into writing mode.

  22. Great tips for getting back on track. As a kid in the midwest, I use to look forward to snow days so school would close, now, not so much as we never close at work. :(

    Just found your blog and it's great, following. :)

  23. Love the title of your blog! 'The more cluttered my room is, the more cluttered my mind feels'....I think this goes for most of us:)

  24. Hi Saumya....there is an award for you on my blog.