Getting Out of a Rut

I’ve been feeling stuck in a rut lately. Like nothing I’m doing is helping me get closer to my goals and I have no idea how to change things. But I discovered something yesterday that could be just what I’ve been needing.

If you guys haven’t read the book The Slight Edge By Jeff Olson, stop everything you are doing and go get it now. Seriously. I wish I had heard of it much earlier in my life because it would have saved me a lot of heartache and frustration. It talks about how every decision you make either brings you closer to success or closer to failure, even when you don’t see it right away. For example, one extra slice of pizza today won’t kill you. If people dropped dead after eating a piece of pizza, there wouldn’t be 70,000 pizza parlors in the USA today. However, if you eat an extra slice of pizza every day for a year can have some serious health consequences. Now you might say, “Alyssa, I would never eat pizza every day for a year!” which may be true, but it doesn’t have to be just pizza! It could be something different every day: pizza today, macaroni and cheese tomorrow, a Big Mac the next day… you get the picture.

This principal doesn’t just apply to food though. What about exercise? Most people know that to see health benefits from exercising, you should exercise at least three times per day fro 20-30 minutes. But why do so many people have those gym memberships and never use them? Because they subconsciously make a choice to ignore the recommendations and say “I’ll go tomorrow… I’m just too tired today.” And three years and 40 lbs down the road (maybe that’s a little bit of an exaggeration), people are too discouraged to ever go back and lose those extra pounds.

Convinced to read the book yet? Here’s one more example: Imagine how your life would change if you read just 10 pages of a book that was geared towards changing your life, books like The Millionaire Next Door, How to Win Friends & Influence People, or Failing Forward: Turning Mistakes into Stepping Stones for Success. It’s so easy to read just a few pages a day, and it’s just as easy not to, which is why so many people are stuck in a rut with their careers, school, relationships, etc. just like I was. You probably won’t see a difference right away, but over weeks, months, and years, the things you do will compound and your life will be changed whether you know it or not. Jeff talks about how most people do these things when they hit rock-bottom to go from failing to survivors, but the people who continue to do them after they are surviving are the continually successful ones, the people who seem to be succeed in whatever they do.

So, from now on, I am going to ask myself this question whenever I am faced with any decision, whether big or small: “If I did this every day for the next year, how would it affect my life?” and similarly, “If I DIDN’T do this every day for the next year, how would it affect my life?” These simple questions apply to everything from academic work to exercise, eating, spending money, and any other decisions you make every day. I challenge you to try it and see how your life changes. I cannot wait to see how it changes me. Also, just get the book. It’ll be well worth your money.

Speaking of being in a rut…

You guys should know that I eat a lot of soup. Like A LOT of soup. Like usually one or two times every day. I just love soup. It is so nutritious for you and delicious, especially now that we’re getting into fall. I usually have three or four different kinds of soup made up in the fridge to heat up. Today, I was heating up some GAPs approved chicken “noodle” soup (find the recipe HERE) and I wasn’t as excited about it as I usually am. I’ve been eating it quite a bit because it’s starting to go bad and I still have a lot of it to eat. Then I came up with the best idea to spice it up a little bit and make it a little differently. Ready for the big secret? It is…


Green onions and an egg! This makes the soup into something similar to an egg drop soup. I cannot believe that something that simple (and cheap!) could change the soup so much! It definitely made this soup much more enjoyable.

So, if you are stuck in a rut today, try making just one or two positive decisions about your health (what you eat or exercising), your relationships (saying “I love you”), or your personal development (seriously, get that book). Then keep doing that every day for the next month and see the results. You can also ask those who love you most what differences they have seen. Chances are, they’ve seen results more than you have! Then keep up the good work!

If you have any more ideas on how to get out of that rut, please let me know! I’d love to hear from you!

Have a blessed day!!!


One thought on “Getting Out of a Rut

  1. I agree, The Slight Edge is an awesome book! It is great encouragement to answer the question–why should I work so hard at x (which will pay off in the future) when I have plenty of work to catch up with today. The answer is… read the book!


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