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Change Your Angle To Crush Your Rut

We’ve all been there. No ideas, no motivation, no energy, no self discipline, or all of the above.

I was there yesterday.

I know exactly what triggered it too. It was the break in my Sunday routine. Normally after my wife and I take my daughters to their swim lessons, we get the grocery shopping out of the way, then I head to the gym for my measurement workout (more on that for another post), I come home have a delicious peanut butter chocolate protein shake then enjoy the rest of the the day with my family.

Instead, after swim lessons, my wife took our youngest shopping with her and I took our oldest to see the highly educational Angry Birds movie.

Coincidentally, I’ve been doing a great job avoid sweets, until of course my little one and I were sitting watching a movie.

Enter some chocolate grossness, buttered popcorn, and diet soda.

Now the experience with my daughter was completely valuable so I wouldn’t change this, but I allowed this special treat to throw off the rest of my day.

When I got home I was of course incredibly nauseous and completely lacking in my motivation to exercise.

I skipped it for the day because I felt awful and tired as a result of binge.

In turn, I felt discouraged that I allowed a change in my routine to cripple my productivity for the day.

Needless to say it wasn’t a “good” day for me in terms of making most of it.

What did I learn from this?

A couple of things.

1. A change in a routine is okay but should be strategically done.

2. When you’re in a rut you need to change your angle.

Let me clarify the second item.

I felt mad at myself all day for implementing a sequence of actions that resulted in laziness and feeling lousy.

Until I came across a great lesson from the movie Big Hero 6. Yes another animated movie with my daughters, don’t judge me.

The protagonist was stumped for ideas and needed to come up with something quick. As he was verbally punishing himself for being a failure who couldn’t come up with anything his older brother picked him up, hung up over his shoulders so that he was upside down. The brother asserted that when you get stuck you need to change your angle.

In other words, change the way you’re looking at things.

This moral felt like a slap in the face waking me from my woe is me ways for the day.

I realized that I needed to change my angle.

I had been writing the day off as a waste before the day was over.


I still had a few hours left before I went to bed.

What did I do?

Maxed out on push ups, put my head phones on and tidied my house. Yes my wife and daughters thought I was a little weird, but I realized I needed to change my angle.

To do this I took a quick dose of productivity and energy.

This shook me out of my funk.

As a result after quickly tidying and feeling a quick pump from push ups, I sat down with my family again and started listing on blog post ideas via Evernote on my phone.

27 potential topics.

One of which I’m writing about right now.

Did I waste yesterday? A little bit.

Did I get to enjoy a fun little date with my daughter? Yes.

Was it worth it? Absolutely.

Did I allow it to ruin my day? Thanks to Big Hero 6, no.

I ended the evening with my goals set for the upcoming week and 27 topics to write about.

This momentum carried over into today.

As I write this, I’ve already worked out and I haven’t yet began my work day. Yesterday built momentum and motivation for today. There is nothing wasteful about that.

Next time you’re in a rut or funk or whatever you want to call it.

Do something to shock your system and change your angle.

It can change the trajectory and help you produce some great things.




Mike Marani
Site Owner @
Mike Marani is an author, educator, and entrepreneur. He is best known for The Amazon Sales Formula which provides both step by step technical instruction along with mindset and motivational advice.

As a full time Assistant Principal and parent of two beautiful daughters, Marani created to help busy people achieve their writing aspirations.