We all get into them, and it takes some of us longer than others to get out of them. No, I'm not talking about the backseat of a two-door car (is anyone else completely inept at getting in and out of those?), but a rut. Sometimes it's a mental block, sometimes it's lack of inspiration. But precious time doesn't have to be wasted. Here are some great ways to get stuff done even when you're just "not feeling it."
1. Get a new office wardbrobe. For those of you who roll out of bed every morning and put on the same tired uniform, we’re right there with you. But sometimes puttting on a new mindset is as easy as putting on a new blouse.
2. Learn a new skill. One popular way to tackle a mental block: pick something you want to learn and get to work figuring out how to do it. Choose something you know will involve a good amount of time spent researching online. Google is a no-brainer.
3. Read up on your field. Start each morning catching up on the latest work-related news. Begin every day with a new idea, so you'll be able to suggest new ways to do things and keep up with the professional chatter.
4. Answer emails or do other "housekeeping" type tasks. Sometimes mental clutter is brought on by clutter elsewhere... your inbox, your desk, your life, etc. Forcing yourself to answer every email that you can in one sitting not only gets those things off your plate, but also lightens the pressure (which sometimes releases your mental block, too). Likewise, organizing random papers can bring to light some notes (and inspiration) that you'd forgotten about. If an abruptly ended conversation with a friend is still weighing on your mind, clear it up.
5. Do whatever it is you're avoiding. Just get it over with already. In journalism, there's a saying: write your first draft, delete everything but your last paragraph, and write your story using your last paragraph as your new lede. It doesn't work all the time, but sometimes you know your first version is going to be awful, so you might as well get it out of the way.
6. Exercise. This one's probably least popular. This may not work for those committed to a desk from 8-5, but if you have the flexibility and freedom, get your body (and your brain moving.) Even a brisk 15 minute walk can help clear your head. Outdoors and along the water preferred.