13 Ways To Bust Out of a Rut
Author: Lauren Mikus

13 ways to bust out of a rut

I’m in a bit of a rut myself, and without much justification. Isn’t it funny that no matter how many blessings we have to be thankful for, we find a way to focus on the one trial or tribulation that’s got us down? Whether everything seems to be going astray, or one nagging thought just won’t leave you alone – I’ve got good news. We’re in this together. Let’s lean on one another, and this list, to get back to the bright side.

13 Ways to Bust Out of That Rut Right Now!

1. Dance

Preferably to “Always alright” by Alabama Shakes. That’s what the living room is for.

2. Get some sun

Nature’s #1 free and available mood enhancer. (Check out this post about Free Parks in Cool Cities for some inspiration)

3. Take a walk

I’m not asking for a run, or even a sun salutation.  Just get out there and let your thoughts clear as your feet move (here’s the key word) forward. (You might enjoy this post: 51 Things to Spend Your Money on Other Than Gas)

4. Get lost in a book

The characters in your own life ruffling your feathers lately?  Distract yourself with fictional ones and gain some insight in the process. (37 Books You Just Can’t Miss might be just what you need)

5. Abstain from the booze

Say what!? I know, I know – this defies all natural inclinations mid-rut.  But the truth is, you’ll just end up feeling more frustrated and hurt than you were before.  Nobody wants a “broody boozy” on their hands.  Do yourself and your friends a favor by just taking a little break until things sort themselves out. (Here’s a sorta-related post you might like: The Social Side of Cutting Back)

6. Rest

My mom always tells me, “Nothing goes right when you’re tired.”  Eight hours of sleep, eight nights in a row.  Then come talk to me.  I challenge you!

7. Write

Maybe you can’t find the right words to articulate your mood when concerned friends start asking questions.  However, in the comfort of your own home, nestled in bed with a notepad – you might find they come a lot easier.  Ballpoint pins make the world a better place.  Two tips in one, fancy that!

8. Don’t buy a thing

Jeans hide your fanny, not your issues.  Don’t create more financial stress in the wake of a hard time, it’s simply not worth it. Clothing, ritzy dinners, and concert tickets can wait.  It’s time to focus on more important things. (Some ideas to get you going: 56 Things to do Instead of Spending Money)

9. Eat healthy

Align this with the eight days of rest, same notion. (Totally related: The Ultimate Guide to Eating Organic on a Budget)

10. Watch the news

Talk about putting your personal problems into perspective.

11. Pick flowers

Keep fresh flowers in the house and put them right by your sink so you’re looking at them often throughout the day.  (I know we may be bummed, but the dishes have to make it to the sink.)

12. Cruise around

Explore a new neighborhood, preferably by bike or foot, for no odd reason other than just because.  I did it last Saturday.  Great fun.

13. Take time for silence

We’re surrounded by a myriad of sounds all day long.  Boycott noise for thirty minutes a day to see what your busied mind is capable of.


Give yourself some credit!  What are some positive attributes about yourself that you focus on during self-deprecating ruts? What is your favorite rut buster?

Pro-chance and fancy free, lifestyle blogger Lauren Mikus lives gratefully in the burgeoning city of Denver. Soon her website, The Serendipper will launch! 


in Motivation, Practical Solutions


  1. Audrey - This Little // June 5, 2013

    This post couldn’t have come in a more timely manner for me – quite in a rut too, but that shall pass with time and your helpful tips :) xx

  2. Jane // June 6, 2013

    Take a Zumba class—energizing, sexy, tribal….you will move parts you didn’t know you had!

  3. Pieliekamais // June 6, 2013

    Great list!

  4. Sarah Ann Noel // June 6, 2013

    Love this. And needed it! I’ve been stuck this week!

  5. Debt Blag // June 6, 2013

    I love to have a good laugh when I’m feeling down. And meditating helps a lot more than I would have guessed it would

  6. sonrie // June 6, 2013

    Bake! Make something with what you have on hand, and it makes your home smell good! Thanks for this list.

  7. emily reinhardt // June 6, 2013

    I am in a MAJOR rut! This post really helped boost my spirits for the time being. I have a broken foot, so unfortunately the dancing, walking/biking and cruising around won’t work just yet…but what a great list! Thanks Anna!

  8. Alex Renteria // June 6, 2013

    “Always alright” by the Alabama Shakes = my new theme song!

  9. Marlene Escalera // June 6, 2013

    I think i need to do a few items on this list. STAT! Thanks for sharing.

  10. The Norwegian Girl // June 6, 2013

    this was a great wakeup call!:-D Thanks for all the good ideas!

  11. Prue // June 6, 2013

    So glad I found your blogs, loving it and I can’t wait to reach my debt free and savings goals thank you for all the great tips !

  12. Alice // June 6, 2013

    One thing that usually helps me is to remind myself that one day, the problem I’m facing, the rut that I’m in, the reason for my stress and dismay … one day it will be a vague memory.

  13. Lizzie // June 7, 2013

    Love this post, I’m in a rut too & you’ve inspired me to takje advantage of the sunshine and go out and do some work in my garden, thank you!

  14. Traci // June 9, 2013

    A great list of reminders. I’m going to focus on #9 today!

  15. grandmasmad3ringcirc // June 12, 2013

    Perfect timing! To get out of the rut I’m in, I think I’ll try em all!

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