What’s wrong with a rut? When and why to get out of it … if necessary!
Dr Gustav Gous
What’s wrong with being in a rut – as if it is a bad thing? We all create ruts - routines, behaviour patterns, habits - to produce results. We cannot live without ruts. The dictionary definition of a rut is : rut 1 (rŭt) n. 1. A sunken track or groove made by the passage of vehicles.
If a rut produces good results, or the rut, road or track takes you to good places, why get out of it?
But a ‘rut’ also gets bad press in the dictionary: It is 2. An uninspired routine or pattern of behavior that one continues unthinkingly or because change is difficult.
A rut is therefore just a bad name for a routine, behaviour pattern, or a habit. In this blog I will give you the guidelines on when and how to get out of your ‘rut’. “Ruts’ must be evaluated in conjunction with results. The problem is not ruts, the problem is that your current rut, routines, behaviour patterns or habits, are perhaps not producing the results you want to get out of your life.
You sometimes you must ask: Is’nt there more to life than wake up, work yourself to death, go home, eat, watch TV, sleep, repeat 5 days in a row, and over weekends watch sport and have a party with friends?
The solution is not to do away with ruts. We cannot live without them – we are creatures of habit. The solution is:
1. First to determine what do you want out of life. Reconnect with your ‘why’ in life.
2. Then you ask: How happy are you with your life? Are you fulfilled? Give yourself a percentage. Or a mark out of 10. If it is not 100% then you must ...
3. Understand cause and effect: Your current patterns, ruts, habits, behaviour patterns produce your current results. Is your current habits serving your purpose or bringing the happiness that you long for? Dr Phil, of Oprah fame, has this nasty way of unmasking bad habits: He always asks: ‘And how’s it been working for you?’ If not, then discontinue the habit. You must realize: “If I continue to do what I do, and think what I think, I will continue to have what I have”.
4. Then identify and make a choice:
- Which ruts serve my purpose? Then keep them . but even with good patterns you must ask? Isn’t the good the enemy of the better? Improvement must be continuous.
- Which ruts does not? Then throw them out and replace them by better ones
- Which one’s are half good but cause problems or are incomplete? Then tweak them or
- adapt them.
5. The, get a plan or a program to help you redesign your life,
6. Then start doing it. In doing so you will cement behaviours into benevolent patterns (not uninspired ruts) that will serve your life purpose and produce the outcomes you long for. It starts with new thinking: New thoughts are the seeds of deeds: Sow a thought, reap an action, sow an action, reap a habit, sow a habit, reap a character, sow a character, reap a destiny.
The bottom line is: There must be a balance between a winning recipe and “when last did you do something for the first time”.!
Live according to two principles:
(i) Connect your ruts or patterns to outcomes / results. Current ruts – current results. If you are not happy with current results, then change your patterns.
(ii) The way to change your patterns is to Get a Life plan, a plan to redesign your life , habits for better outcomes. The Get a Life one day workshops that I do serve this purpose!
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Disclaimer: Important notice to you as the reader: Although the life coach (dr Gustav Gous) provide certain recommendations, the sole and final responsibility for decision-making remains your own and that the life coach or anybody associated to him and his company Short Walk Seminars Pty Ltd cannot be held responsible for any of your choices and reactions. You, the reader, must take full responsibility for your life, reactions and choices.
Dr Gustav Gous is an International Motivational Speaker and Executive Life Coach with experience on 5 continents. He
was the in-house counselor for the petro-chemical company Sasol for 9 years. He is known for his Transformational leadership programmes on Robben Island, titled the “Short Walk to Freedom”.
He is a Certified Speaking Professional (CSP) and past President of the Professional Speakers Association of Southern Africa and a member of the APSS (Asia Professional Speakers Singapore). Currently he is heading up the Diversity Intelligence Institute, specializing in rolling out Diversity Intelligence interventions for
international companies. His leadership caps does for leadership what De Bono's thinking hats did for creativity and problem solving. His Coaching programme on national Radio in South Africa RSG FM 100-104 "Fiks vir die lewe" touches the lives of many South Africans. email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org www.gustavgous.co.za , www.diviin.com ,
Follow him on Twitter: @GustavGous or on Facebook and LinkedIn .