Twice within the past week I have failed to completely close the big side door of our van when I parked it in our driveway. One of the van’s interior lights stayed on, the car’s battery ran down, and my husband had to jump start the vehicle.
Sometimes I feel like that van. My light has burned itself out. My battery is dead, and I need a jump start.
This condition strikes most often in the morning. Nothing and no one demands my attention. Numerous activities are options for me, but not one of them calls my name. I am completely unmotivated.
If this ever happens to you, please heed my advice. Do not reach for the TV remote control. Do not lie back down in your bed, or stretch out on the couch, or curl up in the recliner. Do not pick up your phone and consider all the opportunities for entertainment it offers. Do not stand in front of a mirror and berate yourself. Do not take ice cream from the freezer and start eating it straight from the box.
I am speaking from experience. None of these things will make you feel better. Try one of these activities instead.
Sit on the floor or on a hard-surfaced chair and put on your shoes. If the clothes you have on are not appropriate for wearing outside the house, put on some that are. Open a door and walk outside. Breathe deeply. Speak to someone, or at least wave at a driver who passes by. Pet a dog. Stroke a cat. Pick some flowers. Your blood will start flowing again and you just may think of something you want to do.
Or, try this some morning when you can’t get moving. Go into the bathroom, and without delay, turn on the shower. You will hear water running and feel steam starting to form. Undress without any thought of what clothes to wear that day, what to eat for breakfast, where you may go or what you may do later. Think no further than the shower.
After your shower, you will be compelled to do other things like drying off and combing your wet hair. Accomplishing those tasks may motivate you to brush your teeth. Before you know it, you are ready to face your closet and choose something to wear.
Here is another idea. Open a drawer, cabinet or closet at random. Look at something you haven’t looked at for months. Gather the socks you put away for future darning and throw them in the trash. Do the same with the broken trinket you intended to glue back together, as well as the craft project you abandoned eight years ago. Purging is very satisfying.
My point is this. When you can’t decide what to do first, do something. Take one step and then another, followed by a few more. Movement stimulates movement. You may soon find yourself in the kitchen pouring yourself a glass of orange juice. You’re over the hurdle.
If all else fails, you can do what I just did. Sit down at your computer and compose an article in which you tell people what to do when they don’t want to do anything. You may convince yourself to get out of your pajamas.