From Fed Up to Fired Up: 3 Steps to Reignite Your Passion

Monotony is a recipe for disaster and a common complaint for people who feel fed up and stuck in a rut.

Sometimes in life, you feel as though you’ve gone off course, or things just don’t feel the same as they used to.

Like Sisyphus, in Greek mythology, it’s as if your daily routine consists of pushing an immense stone up a hill, only to watch it roll back down repeatedly.

Wash, rinse, and repeat, this is your life. You are missing your zest. Wondering what happened to your mojo?

Feeling a little less than shiny? How did this happen? You had big dreams. You had a plan.

It was all going so well until it wasn’t. You’re fed up; it’s time to make a change!

But you’re stuck, so you sigh, put your shoulder to the rock, and push uphill again.

What can you do when you’re fed up?

Here’s the differentiator: Sisyphus didn’t question his destiny; he rolled the rock because he believed it was his fate.

It isn’t yours.

Ironically, we are pretty good at creating a life that is exactly what we don’t want.

However, it is just as possible to re-create that life.

To zero in on exactly what you want, give up the daily rock rolling and start anew with healthy striving.

With the simple act of questioning your daily routines, you begin to change your journey.

You open up possibilities.

You step back into being the author of your life, give up the daily drudgery, and regain your zest and vitality.

Here is the beautiful part of this plan: when you are fed up with the path your life has taken, the way out isn’t a dramatic exit, an abandonment of all that you’ve worked for along the way, or a courageous leap out of what feels like a safe routine.

The first step to charting a new course is to stop, rest, and play.

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Michael Singer, author of The Untethered Soul, writes, “No solution can possibly exist while you’re lost in the energy of the problem.”

Change your energy by disrupting your daily routines to remind yourself that you can.

Allow yourself to rest and play in micro-moments throughout the day for at least four days.

Fill those moments with inspirational activities that feel restful to heart and mind, playful and creative.

These “distractions” will bump you out of your fed-up rut, and creative possibilities for your future will appear.

Reclaim hope, optimism, and future-mindedness.

On the fifth day, it’s time to chart your course.

Put pen to paper (this part is important because writing organizes your thoughts and focuses your energy) and write down the following:

1. Feeling State Goals

  • Three adjectives that describe how you have been feeling lately. Challenge yourself to distinguish between a thought and a feeling state. “My boss doesn’t value me,” is a thought. Feeling worthless may be the feeling that goes along with that thought.
  • Now, think forward one year and imagine you are looking back. Use three adjectives to describe how you would like to be feeling, more often than not, in the coming year.

You’ve just described your feeling state goals, an absolutely critical and often overlooked step to creating your desired life.

Somewhere along the way, we got in the habit of teaching, encouraging, and modeling the pursuit of achievement-related goals without regard to whether a successful accomplishment makes us feel the way we want.

This is the classic story of the Hollywood star who catapulted to fame only to question whether they belonged on stage or the big screen.

The pro athlete consistently “wins” but feels lost off the field, court, or course.

Successful executives climb the corporate ladder only to find themselves with a big bank account, an empty heart, and a greater sense of vulnerability than ever before.

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The successful ____(fill in the blank)____ who one day realizes that they are leading the life their parents wanted for them, but not the one they desire.

This is a miscalculation based on the belief that achieving a particular goal will automatically translate into the desired feeling state: “When I achieve ________________, I will feel valued, safe, confident, loved, successful, etc.”

By flipping this process around and beginning with the desired feeling states, you reverse engineer your way into positive achievements.

That is, achievements related to goals that are directly correlated to what you want, rather than what you think you should want (as a side note, if you take anything from this article, put this reminder on a Post-it® “Don’t should on yourself” and stick it on your bathroom mirror).

Aligning your efforts with your desired feelings will tap into a new energy source because you won’t spend all that energy on making yourself do things you don’t want to do.

2. What to Take With You

When you’re fed up, the next thing to do is make a list of what you know to be true about yourself that you know with conviction you want to continue.

Be as specific as possible; the clearer and more accurate, the better.

Notice that your list can include things that seem contradictory to each other.

A golden rule to getting unstuck is moving from an “either/or” mindset to a “yes/and” mindset.

This list could sound something like this:

  • I love my dog.
  • I enjoy spending some time outside every day.
  • I love to fish, and my favorite place is the open sea.
  • I love to create a home, and my favorite way to do that is to garden.
  • I love to cook when I am entertaining.
  • I like being with other people, and I love my alone time.
  • I love spending time with my children and my work.
  • I need natural light to feel happy.
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You’ve just created a list of your passions, values, and strengths.

You want these to stay the same no matter what changes in your future.

3. What you want. Keep it simple.

Set your intentions by writing down what you know you want.

Keep it simple; write down what you know to be true today.

Close your eyes, check in, and ask yourself, “What do I know today that I want to be true for myself?”

Some might be no-brainers, and others might feel aspirational.

If you have one that feels like “pie in the sky,” then ask yourself what a smaller, more realizable version of that idea could be.

Use these prompts to help you get clear: “In three years, I want to…

  • be…,
  • do…,
  • create…,
  • experience….
  • have….. “

List as many things you know to be true, and then move on to the things you “wish” could be true.

These are your goals, your mile markers for your journey.

What do you do when you feel fed up?

Feeling fed up is a message from your internal GPS that it is time to readjust your course.

The very thing you believe you don’t have time for is exactly what you need to get unstuck.

Pausing, resting, and playing are all recalibrations of the amazing guidance system that you already have within you.

Tune in, let yourself thaw old dreams, and imagine new ones.

Focus on what you do want vs. what you don’t want, and discover that with clear intentions and small, daily steps in alignment with those intentions, what you dream of becomes your daily reality.

What do you do when you’re fed up?

How do you get yourself out of a rut?

Tell me in the comment section; I would love to hear from you.

6 Comments
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6 Comments
  1. Prexie

    October 24, 2023 at 12:56 PM

    Everything is just fustrating this isn’t useful 😑😑
    You tried for your article but it’s not just working for
    me.

    • Danielle Dahl

      October 24, 2023 at 1:30 PM

      We are sorry you are going through a frustrating time right now, and that this article didn’t help you the way you had hoped. There are some other related articles, including plenty of quotes that might offer some perspective on the site. We hope you find what you are looking for. Thanks for reading.

  2. Jen

    December 29, 2020 at 10:08 PM

    Melanie,
    I feel the exact same way. Just burnt out on life and the perpetual trying, only to be knocked down continuously. Tired. My thoughts when reading this article? I don’t have the energy.

  3. G3Ken

    June 10, 2019 at 1:04 PM

    I am so happy to read this. I don’t know if the advice is all bull***t or not, but I’m happy that I’m not alone. Now I know that seems like “misery loves company”, but I assure you it is not. I just wonder if I’m the only one wondering “how the hell did I get here?”

    I got married young (22) and am working on year 33. Most of it wasn’t happy, but we reconciled a bit over 5 years ago. This was after I discovered she was involved with someone else. It was an emotional affair, but no less devastating.

    We both make good money, and our two kids are grown college grads with good, stable careers. That’s rare today I just feel unfulfilled and live in a city I don’t want to be in, doing a job I don’t hate, but don’t enjoy either. It just feels “blah” and I know it looks like I’m whining and I probably an and should shut up, but there’s a comment section, so I’m commenting.

    Thanks for at least letting me know I’m not alone and there is a way forward. 😊

    • GwenP

      January 31, 2020 at 9:41 AM

      I just Googled ‘I hate myself for being so unmotivated’ and this page came up. I have noted down loads of things from it. I am already starting to feel better. It resonates with me personally. I work for myself and I have noticed a gradually decline in my motivation, productivity and therefore, income over the past year or so. I have just kept flogging myself, but you know, the proverbial dead horse. I have found myself being distracted to avoid facing work. I can now see that this was my unconscious telling me to take a break and make it count. A lot of people would look at my life and think I was in a good place – maybe not financially, but psychologically, that kind of thing and I get by. However, if it isn’t really ringing our bells any more, does that mean we shouldn’t seek something better? I just attended the funeral of a good friend, who died of cancer at 60. Everything came together for her in the last few years of life and she was content, even knowing she was terminally ill. It’s not the length of days, it’s the quality of days… Prayers for you and your family…

  4. Ms Colette Reilly

    October 14, 2018 at 7:19 PM

    I love that you say to play in the moment, that’s so important. So often we get overwhelmed and thinking change takes BIG action and THAT takes energy which is likely flagging…but the power of play and reducing things to micro actions is huge.

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