Join Stefan Mumaw for an in-depth discussion in this video Identifying rut types, part of Breaking Out of a Rut.
A rut is simply muscle memory that manifests in our daily actions. Our immediate future and our life pursuits. The first step to getting out of a rut. Is to identify what kind of rut you're in. Or more importantly, what kind of rut you want to bust. While there are nuances on the periphery of each, let's focus on the short term, mid term, and long term ruts. Short term ruts are ones of daily repetition. They usually manifest as a series of unconscious choices that lead to similar executional results.
If you're a designer, you may find you're constantly using the same fonts, or designing in the same grid structures. If you're an artist you may find you're attracted to the same color palettes repeatedly or you rarely stray from the same type of application instrument. They can also show up as patterns of behaviour or routines of process. Truthfully most ruts are short term ruts. The key to busting short term ruts is engaging in short term experiences. Midterm ruts however, require more investigation. Have you ever returned from a conference or vacation and felt especially motivated to enact positive change in your life? Perhaps you wanted to improve in a certain area or pick up a new skill.
So you took the immediate actionable steps to reach that lofty goal knowing you wouldn't reach it right away. We often think about long term objectives and we create short term actions to get there, but few of us ever think about the middle. The middle consists of a combination of larger steps you can take, as well as shorter goals you can achieve to help meet your long term goals. These mid-term directives require a bit of planning but usually don't require extensive life changes to achieve. If short term rut busting involves steps to reach a goal, mid term rut busting involves strides that are both strides and goals.
Then there's long term rut busting. We actually engage in the practice of long term rut busting every year on January 1st. You know it as a tradition of New Year's Resolutions. Resolutions are long term goals you set for yourself. Changes you'd like to see in your life. They're easy to set and difficult to keep because you rarely set a plan in place to achieve these goals. You simply fill out the wish list and hope for the best. To make resolutions stick, you have to be willing to make significant change. Not just willing to accept the benefit that change will produce.
There are goals that require an actionable plan, accountability, and faith that the journey is worth it. What kind of rut do you want to bust?
The course is more resource than classroom, designed to be something you can return to each and every time you feel stuck on a project or stalled in your career. Come back anytime you need help taking a creative leap forward.