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In a Rut? Change It Up In 6 Simple Steps. It's a fine line between staying focused and suffering monotony. Small changes, carefully chosen, can have big results.

By Marty Fukuda

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At some point in everyone's life, the routine becomes boring and they fall into a rut. Even an action-packed life can grow monotonous. Every day becomes your own living version of the movie Groundhog Day, repeating the same events with no progress. We all encounter it at some point. The question is, how do we get past the inevitable rut and on with the life we want?

1. Cease and desist.

The first, best thing anyone can do to get out of a rut is figure out what not to do. What are you doing repeatedly that does not bring fulfillment or progress to your life? Give yourself a cease and desist order for the unproductive tasks in your life. It could be as simple as getting to bed earlier, requiring you to put a cease and desist on watching late night talk shows. Imagine how much more energized you'll feel by getting an extra hour's worth of sleep.

Related: The Surprising Sleep Habits of the Rich and Famous (Infographic)

2. Shuffle the deck.

Sometimes all it takes to snap out of a funk is a change of scenery. Try re-arranging your office furniture to switch things up, or take a walk in the middle of the day to get some exercise and clear your mind. Re-inventing your routine can do wonders for your perspective.

3. Take up a new hobby.

Things can go stale in your life when you have no outlet beyond your normal day-to-day of work and home. Think of a hobby that you've always found interesting but never tried, or re-engage in a passion from your youth. These are great ways to add some enthusiasm to the rest of your life.

Related: 4 Leadership Skills That Hobbies Help Build

4. Figure out your mission.

Do you have a mission or specific goals? I've found that individuals who work toward something specific and important to them are usually too busy making it happen to become bored. The author Robert Heinlein said, "In the absence of clearly-defined goals, we become strangely loyal to performing daily trivia until ultimately we become enslaved by it."

It's amazing what a specific purpose will do to invigorate your life and energy.

Related: A Personal Mission Statement Can Set You on a Course to Success

5. Talk to different people.

Having conversations with people outside of your normal circle of influence can lend a fresh perspective on things. Discussions with a new colleague or friend can help you think differently and come up with new creative ways to tackle your biggest challenges.

6. Change a habit.

Everyone has at least a few habits they know they should change. Pick one for starters that you know will have a large impact on your quality of life and commit to changing it. Focus on improving yourself in this one area to help create more willpower and self esteem in other areas too.

Related: The Best Way to Change Your Habits? Control Your Environment.

Marty Fukuda

Chief Operating Officer of N2 Publishing

Chicago native Marty Fukuda is the chief operating officer of N2 Publishing, overseeing operations at its corporate headquarters in Wilmington, N.C. He first joined the company as an area director in 2008 after working in the direct sales and print industries. 

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