Picture you’re eight years old at your favorite neighborhood park. The fat lumps of cotton candy clouds are scattered across the vast crystal blue sky. The trees dance. All is well.
The natural beauty of a good day pales in the background as you dash towards the center of the universe—the playground slide.
You make the step, one dust-covered shoe after the other until you get a bird’s eye view of the world from the top of your little castle.
All that effort only to slide down and come back up again.
Fifteen years later, you don’t stop falling. The downhill is never-ending.
You have no idea what’s going on.
This is what we’ve come to call the sudden decline in our activity, motivation, energy, and in severe cases, the will to shower.
I’ve shuffled through my fair share of slumps. Like you, I don’t know precisely how it happened and what led to it. And like you, all I knew was I needed to get out of it.
But how exactly?
Then I remembered that hack about tricking your brain into happiness.
Smile, and then you’ll feel good. Not the other way around.
“Movimiento es vida.”
The Two-Minute Rule
As the name implies, the two-minute rule made famous by James Clear states that a new habit (or a task) can be scaled back to something that doesn’t take more than two minutes to achieve.
In short: Make the action too small to dodge. This way, you just have to do it.
Exercising for an hour becomes putting on your workout shoes.
Finishing a book becomes reading one page every night.
Instead of cramming a month’s worth of lectures into a single all-nighter, start with just opening your notes and laying them on your table.
Breaking The Cycle
Contrary to popular belief, the cure for a slump isn’t relaxing and hitting the couch. It’s movement.
You do the work first before you start to feel good.
The slump, I’ve discovered, isn’t a hole. It’s a ceiling, and it always comes when you’re on the verge of breaking it. It’s your old self’s way of holding you back.
Make sure she doesn’t win.