Hitting The Reset Button

  SNES reset button 
  Originally uploaded by Chris.JP.

I’ve been in a funk for the past three or four days and I don’t know why. I mentioned it to David Kidder, founder and CEO of Clickable, at lunch yesterday and he said "you need to hit the reset button".

If only there were such a button. Sometimes music does it for me. A good laugh is another great reset button. A hug can do wonders. My friend Paul told me that running got him through the first wave of the subprime mess last summer.

I think mental health is an important part of overall health and I’ve invested a lot of time and energy over the years in getting a handle on mine. I am curious to hear what all of you do when you need to hit the reset button.

#VC & Technology

Comments (Archived):

  1. Hiren Patel

    Every time you feel stressed, find a cute little kid with big cheeks and tug on them. Everything you are worrying about will just melt away 🙂

    1. fredwilson

      I did that with my son Josh this morning and it helped a lotThanks!fred

      1. cute little kid

        Ouch! Stop tugging/pinching me. It doesn’t feel good. How about a back rub instead? Stop using me and all the other cute little kids out there for your stress relief.

  2. csertoglu

    I find escaping to a remote, unfamiliar setting helps. Sailing and heli-skiing has done wonders, but may not be terribly accessible at short notice.

  3. mfusco

    I am a big believer in the balance between having a strong mind as well as a strong body. When I start to feel stressed or run down, I stop and say “do I need to focus more right now on creating a healthier mind or a healthier body”? Which part of me is out of balance? Once I figure that out, I can then better focus my energy or rest, for that matter.

  4. stone

    There’s nothing like running, outside and inside. I own two treadmills — one in each of our homes. I must use it 2-3 times per week in order to feel normal. When i get very stressed out, which happens from time to time, I turn to exercise. A good 30-minute run can cure many ills.

  5. Jordan

    I find that there’s not a single ‘reset’ button that makes the fog evaporate into mist. More, it’s a matter of focusing on the things you know bring joy to your life and taking a break from those that don’t. The renewal offered by the child-like state of play is a damn sight better than any SSRI or colonic irrigation treatment (and with fewer side effects).

  6. Dan T

    1. Yoga once or twice a week helps make the rest button more accessible.2. Good one on one conversation with my young kids. I let them know I need a little help. It’s almost always the other way around and they like to help.3. Finally, what I usually rely on > I married well. My wife is really good at helping me find the reset button.

  7. markslater

    i watch planes. I look over logan and love to marvel at the feat of flying.

    1. Gabriel Nijmeh

      A few years back on our honeymoon, we took a Canada/New England cruise and Boston was one of the ports of call. Our ship was docked across the bay/harbor from Logan airport.I still fondly remember leaning up against the railing watching the planes land/take-off, one after the other. I was in awe… it was like a coordinated symphony of the skies. Weather was just serene… a warm breeze, sunny, blue skies.

  8. Scott Purdie

    I play Queens “Bohemian Rhapsody” really loud, just once… Brilliant reset! :)Scott

    1. fredwilson

      “One good thing about music, when it hits you feel no pain”

      1. scott

        When I lived in Cambridge, MA a few years ago, I would go on long walks. After living there for a while, I walked most of Cambridge, Somerville and Boston.Walking these places really gives you a ton of perspective. It was always a great reset for me. Remember to take a ton of pictures.

    2. khylek

      That’s a great song. Everytime I hear it in my head I picture Wayne and Garth banging their heads to it. Brings a smile to my face every time.

  9. WayneMulligan

    For me it depends where the fog is coming from. Sometimes if it’s a “work fog”, I’ll just work straight through it…week or two, I’m good as new. If it’s more of a life fog, I have a few “go to” people that I can usually go to just to talk and spew (close friend/mentor, my mom (don’t laugh), etc.).A weekend away – somewhere remote, no PC, no Phone, etc. – might not hurt either.-Wayne

  10. BP

    Do you have a hobby? Could be drawing, painting, sculpture, cooking, photography, woodworking, ceramics or music (other then just listening). Anything that gets you working with your hands and mind and provides immediate feedback in the sense of producing a physical thing can work wonders. It doesn’t matter if you are good at it. And, it doesn’t matter if it is something you never tried. As a place to start think back to your younger days to find an endeavor that you enjoyed. Or, just start experimenting. It doesn’t have to be a conscious effort The whole point is to get into it so you can get away from everything else.

  11. deepeshbanerji

    Playing recreational sports always does it for me. For a given hour, you are having focused competitive but still having fun. every time im on the soccer field / bball court / squash court / what have you, i dont think about anything other than the moment of playing the sport

  12. mfeinstein

    I go on a long, fast bike ride.

    1. Gahl Berkooz

      Same here.

      1. Martin Dufort

        Same here, and around Jay Peak, VT

  13. thirkej

    When I lived in London I used to cycle to and from work – 45 minutes / 11 miles through rush hour traffic.Focusing the mind on survival seemed to clear all other worries away and I’d get home, relieved but ready for anything!

  14. aarondelcohen

    Fred, I know of a cool company involved with restaurants that might get you excited.

  15. Gabriel Nijmeh

    There are a few things that helps me unwind and keep my head on straight…1) Playing with my little boy. His boundless energy, infectious smile and curiosity keeps life in perspective.2) Listen to music (which is pretty much every hour of the day except when I’m sleeping, of course).3) Playing sports/exercising… getting the blood pumping and endorphins flowing gives me a general sense of well-being. A few days without exercising and I feel dopey and sluggish.4) Sitting on a patio on a beautiful, breezy summer afternoon enjoying a good conversation and beers with friends. Many of the worlds problems have been theoretically resolved during these entertaining discussions. Could also be the beer talking!

  16. Lisa

    Walking around Paris. When I can’t get away, I go for an urban hike starting on at the Brooklyn side of the bridge and continuing all the way uptown to 125th Street.

    1. fredwilson

      Wow. On a bike ride this weekend a friend told me about his friend who walked the entire length of manhattan in one day, basically down broadwayI gotta do that some day

      1. Tilo

        I used to rollerblade down broadway practically from tip to tip of Manhattan!

      2. Karen E.

        There is a group in Manhattan that organizes a walk along Broadway every fall. They are a web-based community of friends. Oh here it is – http://www.apartmenttherapy

  17. zackmansfield

    The only prescription is more cowbell

    1. fredwilson

      That got me the much needed chuckle. This thread is making me feel better by the minute!

  18. BillSeitz

    Maybe your funk is trying to tell you something, and you should figure out what that is and address it.I often find that falling behind in some of my personal chores leaves me disgruntled. So spending some time getting some of that stuff done helps a lot.

  19. Vinod Bhosla

    i usually just do a boatload of cocaine

  20. bjubb

    18 at bethpage black

    1. Rex Hammock

      I’m not a great carpenter or yard guy, but I find that digging a hole or hammering a nail is good therapy for me. However, I have to watch myself because getting away from technology is one of the reasons I do those things, however, you wouldn’t believe all the gadgets you can discover you’d love to have if you start hanging out at a Home Depot or Lowes. ; )

    2. fredwilson

      That’s what my friend mario suggested to me this morning. Except he suggested bayonne

      1. bjubb

        Certainly a little less stressful than getting on the Black course but then again they are hosting the Open next year…

  21. Fraser

    A great call to that old friend to recount hilarious stories. A long drive on the highway with the window down and music up. A brutally long run.Or, what I just did – a trip home to surround yourself with family, friends and familiarity.

  22. awilensky

    I would think that shipping the offspings to college can make you feel your exact age. A big x , like a dot on a dot on the map of the universe, that says, ‘you are here’. or, as Gurdjieff said, ‘impressions are the other food, like air and water, a person cannot exist on stale impressions.”

    1. fredwilson

      That’s clearly part of it. Very perceptive of you

      1. awilensky

        Like all the Indian guys at FT lab said of my analysis, “Alan, you stink…. of perception”.

  23. marcrigaux

    Tim Ferris blogged about this a little while ago. Here’s the link: http://www.fourhourworkweek……but the gist of it is:1) A down period is just one phase of a natural biorhythm that is not only temporary, but necessary. (ie: energy and interest are cyclical, and this is your body’s way of recharging for higher periods of productivity).2) How you label yourself has a lot to do with how you feel. ie: when people say they are “depressed”, often times they are “lonely” or feel “isolated”, which are more actionable states. (and they say the fastest way to produce an emotional upswing in that case is breaking bread with friends or family). This is a big one for me, because saying I am in a “funk” may feel correct, but it is a tough thing to take action on, so I try and really get specific.3) Gratitude training – ie: taking time to actually take inventory of the good things can really help. Often times you realize what a privilege it is to be down about the types of things we’re down about, after you’ve thought about all the good things one has going for them.These aren’t all specific to your post, Fred – just ways of dealing with a normal down period for the average person.Good luck, Fred!

    1. Golibaaz

      Totally agree with the gratitude approach..i use it myself with great success. once you realize that its a privilege to worry about things I do, most of the stress just melts away.

      1. themaria

        I also agree with the gratitude approach. To take it a step further… A trick a learned last year is to make it a habit to write down 5 daily successes of at the end of each day before bed. It energizes you and also makes you “anchor” your actions differently through the day. What I mean by that is that, if you know that you are accountable in front of yourself daily to create successes, even when you don’t feel successful (and especially if you don’t feel successful!), you will act differently than when you didn’t track your successes. And being able to reflect upon the day in a positive way allows you to bring this positive energy into the following day. You create momentum, and that feeling builds upon itself.

  24. Erik Peterson

    The one advantage of seasonal affective disorder is that whenever I lay out in the sun, I get an incredible rush of endorphins. I have no idea what it would be like for you, but it couldn’t hurt to try it a little bit.I’m also a walker. Related to above, I was having a tough time last December, so I went on a walking spree. I walked about 10 miles each day- some of it through the worst parts of town. It really got me thinking about my position and trajectory in life and gave me a fresh perspective that helped me quite a bit. Some parts of New York might be a big rougher than Atlanta, so maybe you should take some pepper spray. However, it still might be worth it.

  25. leafar

    I walk alone in a city that i don’t know.It takes energy to navigate, your eyes are captivated… and after one day you fell refresh and tired.I’ve started to go visit a different city every month.Oh and I unplugged myself from everything.

  26. jackson

    I do what I believe that you are incapable of doing, schedule a whole day of nada, zilch, zero…..I’ll cook, read, watch movies, turn off the outside world.

    1. iamverytall

      I envy your ability to engage in said activities.

    2. fredwilson

      I can do it. I’ll come out to brooklyn and do it with you!!

  27. iamverytall

    So far, the answers seem to be playing with your kids, exercise, going somewhere (outdoors or out of the usual), and hobbies. I usually find that the utility of each of these answers (with the exception of kids, since I don’t have any) is dependent on why I’m feeling down to begin with.If there’s a specific cause, such as a problem at work, then I usually have to focus my attention on it until it’s resolved. If it’s more of a general funk, then that usually means that I’m stuck in a rut and need to shake up my routine, with the amount of shaking being directly related to the strength of the funk. If it’s just a wee funk, then it can usually be solved with some quality time with friends and family, particularly if I haven’t seen them in a while. Larger funks might require a couple days of completely different activities.Anyway, those are my two verbose cents.

  28. blake41

    Without fail a trip to Andrew Bird’s Armchair Apocrypha rejuvenates me. It’s the perfect mix of melancholy overtones and beautiful melodies to take my mind of my troubles

  29. Barrett

    Lately, it has been watching baseball or playing catch w/ my 6yo and 5yo.

  30. ppearlman

    “take the horn out your mouth”

  31. greg norrell

    My funks typically stem from feelings of being disconnected. Disconnected from myself or from other people. If your funk shares this similarity with mine then I imagine simply reading this long thread of “caring” comments should make you feel better. Due to your daily well written blogging, you have an immediate support group of people that care that you are feeling blue. Bet it feels good to see your efforts returned in such a simple fashion.

    1. fredwilson

      It sure does. I can’t tell you how great it feels

  32. jasonoliver

    grab a camera (dslr or p&s), go outside (especially on a day like today in nyc), and just shoot whatever you see on the street. new york is a beautiful city and whenever i have too much in my head, i like to just walk around and capture moments in life onto film.

  33. John

    20 minute nap — we’re all more tired than we think. Workout and a steam / sauna. Even better, fast for 18-24 hours (no juice or sugar) and then workout, then a fresh meal. Sex, of course, then another nap, this time as long as you want — you earned it.

  34. Robert Seidman

    I wound up reading this and all of the sudden I too had a fever, and the only prescription was more cowbell.http://www.youtube.com/watc…Hopefully your reset button involves this *very* nice comments thread reminding you that it’s not about people enabling technology, but technology enabling people. Hope you are out of your funk soon.

    1. fredwilson

      A little cowbell and a lot of comments is working its magic

  35. kareemk

    I was going through a similar funk recently and took a completely spontaneous trip to London to visit old college friends. I just got back yesterday and my productivity levels and general level of happiness has received a much needed boost. I think the key thing about it is that it was completely last minute (I booked the flight less then 24 hours from its scheduled departure) and my schedule there unplanned. One of the basic human needs is uncertainty (aka adventure) and living in the city with a very regimented schedule can leave the psyche needing some spontaneity.

  36. Dominic

    Listen to your body and mind.It is telling you what it wants.For me it’s usually attention.Go for a massage, acupunture, reiki, or something like that.Something to get the energy in the body and mind moving.Dom

  37. e.p.c.

    I take my dogs for a walk. If I’m in need of a deep reset I take them out to Amagansett and walk them from Indian Wells Beach to Atlantic and back.That said, I second the walk up or down Broadway. It was after such a walk in a particularly down period of my life that I decided I loved NYC and was going to stay.

    1. fredwilson

      Oh man. I could use a little amagansett right now. Haven’t been out there since thanksgiving

  38. Guest

    To totally reset I need something that physically destroys me. This includes intense running, swimming, and rock climbing. And it has to be fast and furious with a lot of energy exerted. Done to the point of complete exhaustion which floods you with endorphins and a sense of accomplishment. Usually alone / in isolation from the rest of the world. Just me, myself, and my thoughts pushing my body to physical limits. It sorta feels like breaking yourself down and letting yourself come back from the ashes.Hope that’s a bit of inspiration to kick ass and take names.Cheers,Boris

    1. Metlin

      Indeed. I love climbing, and I find that it is a great de-stresser. Not indoor, though — it has to be outdoors, and it has to be trad.There’s something about being out in the elements and just trying to climb that rock face or wall of ice. I couldn’t think of a better way to hit my reset button.And similarly, just about any serious outdoor activity (kayaking, rafting, skiing) just gets me going. The more the adrenaline the better.

  39. JoeGrigsby

    I always look to my wife to help me get through those moments. She has a natural talent to put things in perspective and it helps to know that someone is there that I can lean on. Her best advice is usually around providing context that life is better than we think, that we often make it harder than we need to and that each day we are lucky to just get out of bed.

  40. Jonathan Fields

    Yoga. Started it as a securities lawyer, now I own a studio in NYC. Helps not only get you out of a funk, but keep you from getting into it.

  41. Shreshth

    my Grandpa has always said this to me since i entered my teens, but only recently have i come to realize the true meaning. “Harmonious development of BODY, MIND & SOUL”. For my Body: Running is the best, I can’t seem to get anything else right.Mind & Soul – This is the catch and sometimes things overlap, but nonetheless you have to try which works for you best. Meditation, YOGA, just praying before getting off the bed every morning, the smallest of things that give you peace at heart.

  42. Rob Long

    A dog helps. I can walk for miles lost in purposeless thought. My dog loves it, and it makes me happy to know that my dog is happy, too. But the only thing that has ever helped me rebalance my brain chemistry, which is often out of whack, is yoga.Yeah, I said it: yoga. I know, I know: but still. The breathing, the postures — it really works. It’s sort of embarrassing and awkward at first — which is part of the process — but you get over it, and soon start to love it. At least, I did.

    1. fredwilson

      I did love it for the first half of this decade. It helped me get through ‘the nuclear winter’. But I fell out of love with it and prefer long bike rides these daysI may have to try to get back into itFred

  43. Bob Warfield

    It depends whether you need a quick browser refresh, a warm boot, or a full-on cold boot.Refresh for me consists of cramming enough new bits in the brain that the bad old bits are displaced. Quick resets come from hooking up for drinks with old friends I haven’t talked to in a long time. They plug me into that other time and take me away from the present, albeit briefly. No friends handy, go find a book that will totally absorb you. A more medium scale reset comes from a vacation. I love to go scuba dive in the warm waters of Hawaii or the Caribbean. Or, a trip to immerse in another culture is ideal.For the big reset, only one thing works: you have to learn something new. Something deep. Something perhaps a little bit hard. Something with a community you can connect with. Could be a new hobby or a relevant professional connection.Cheers,BW

  44. mike

    Learn to kiteboard. All you are conscious of is wind, water and speed. Your mind goes alpha-wave the whole time. Your mind can’t do anything but reset.

  45. Jeff

    I started running when I turned 48, and never looked back. Found out I loved it, love the high, and I feel young. Your body will litreally hum with content after a nice long run. (6 to 8 miles min.)

  46. Jeff

    This is exactly what I needed today. I just moved from a nimble startup to a big-ish company and, for many reasons, the adjustment has been *brutal* for me. More than once I’ve had to go out to my car, turn up the music and curse my lungs out. I made the move because I knew it would stretch me and make me a better technologist/entrepreneur in the end, but I’m definitely feeling the need to reset. Thanks!

  47. tomnixon

    Find a Buddhist centre nearby and join them for a guided meditation session. You absolutely cannot fail to leave with such an enormous cheesy grin on your face that it’s almost embarassing.

  48. ErikSchwartz

    Day to day…. My three daughters and my wife.Every few years…. Getting out on the ocean by myself.”Some years ago – never mind how long precisely – having little or no money in my purse, and nothing particular to interest me on shore, I thought I would sail about a little and see the watery part of the world. It is a way I have of driving off the spleen, and regulating the circulation. Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, and bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet; and especially whenever my hypos get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people’s hats off – then, I account it high time to get to sea as soon as I can. This is my substitute for pistol and ball. With a philosophical flourish Cato throws himself upon his sword; I quietly take to the ship. There is nothing surprising in this. If they but knew it, almost all men in their degree, some time or other, cherish very nearly the same feelings towards the ocean with me.”

    1. fredwilson

      Who wrote that?

      1. Laura

        Herman Melville; it’s the opening of Moby-Dick. Ahab certainly could have used a reset button.To keep from being consumed by my own white whale, I go to the batting cages and whack lots of balls and call every person I love until I find the one whose particular energy I need to pull me out of that particular funk.

      2. ErikSchwartz

        It’s the opening of Moby Dick, minus the first line that has become so cliched and hackneyed that it causes one to ignore the amazing paragraph that follows.You can’t be a start up CEO and not have a bit of Ahab in you.

        1. fredwilson

          That’s what I thought. Just wanted to confirm

        2. fredwilson

          That’s what I thought. Just wanted to confirm

  49. m

    i have several things i do, none of which are related except for one rule — unplug completely. no rules, no plans, and certainly no damn screens of any kind.especially in nyc, i would not-think, open the door and start walking. the limitlessness of it is incredibly liberating — wherever i would go, there i’d be. very zen … and infinitely happier.

  50. Lloyd Fassett

    It depends on what kind of funkitude you’re looking at. Day to day, aerobic excercise keeps the dopamine flowing in your brain and generally keeps things in balance. Like many other posts, I bike (mt. and road) about 4 hours a week and that does it.By the time you put out a post though, this isn’t a ‘trip the Shake Shack’ adjustment. In that case, I wouldn’t deal with this patch because it’s time to talk about prevention for the next time. One other person suggested getting away every year, and I’d second that. As a long time reader, it’s fun to read about your family trips and I actually look forward to hearing about them because it’s more personal than reading general articles about other places (yes – blogging etc is the future). But, I’ve never heard you blog about going on a weekend with the guys. That’s usually good for some more serious redecorating of the attitude. I’d suggest calling your 4 or more best friends and scheduling an outdoorsy get away for a weekend this summer to just catch up, sit by the fire and shoot the breeze. That might last you until next year. Make it two nights minimum. Don’t go to someone’s vacation house. Other fun things are mt. bike vacations (www.westernspirit.com), housboat trips, motorcycle trips. As long as it’s about the guys and old relationships and not the family, that will do the trick.A cliche I always believed in is that to be happy a person needs three things. 1. Someone to love 2. Something to do 3. Something to look forward to. This suggestion is in the #3 category.

    1. tweetip

      We would second western spirit ~ ashley and mark are next door :)) Not much solo time on a bike trip though. We agree with others, the funk needs to be understood. Naps are key. Approaching 50 is certainly a time of introspection. Fred, we said it before, go finish that hike into upper Bear Creek – ask some questions :))

  51. MusingsFromTroy

    Get into Graduate School

  52. Jessica

    run! have you ever done one of the races produced by the New York Road Runners club? they’re great! it takes some work to train and start running regularly so you don’t get injured, but after a race, you are completely RESET. http://www.nyrr.orgthe next race is a half-marathon, which is a bit much to start with, but on May 11 there’s a 4-mile one. it’s not much of an instant gratification thing, but try it! you won’t regret it the least bit.

  53. Arin Sarkissian

    Watching movies and playing guitar does the trick for me.I personally need a couple hours of “me” time per day or else I’ll go insane. I’m way too busy with work and my side projects to relax during normal hours… so I’ve become a night owl. No matter how late it is I’ll put on some DVD, grab my guitar and decompress for the duration of the flick. The best thing about relaxing late (2am, 3am etc) is your phone’s not ringing, emails aren’t killing your blackberry… there just aren’t too many other people awake to disrupt/bother you.Essentially I traded a couple hours of sleep for a couple hours of relaxing.Good luck!-Arin

  54. Steven Kane

    disconnect.no email.no blogging.no IM.no twitter.no cel phone.no blackberry.no PC.no chat.no commenting.no tumblr.etc.to continue your metaphor, you can’t truly reboot with emptying all the memory completelyany case, somehow we have all trained ourselves to believe life is not complete without electronic communication.that’s not only BS, its sad and dangerous.maybe the funk you are feeling is caused, at least in some small part, by too much time and too much focus on the virtual, rather than on the realkind of like the feeling after one has groged themselves on potato chips — you feel full but not nourished and a little bit uneasyjust a thought

    1. fredwilson

      There’s a lot of truth in that steve

  55. thomasl824

    I head to the lake. Being outside, getting exercise, fiction. All calm me down and usually I can peel off the negatives the longer I stay by the lake.

  56. jackson

    We have a backyard now, so insert grilling for cooking and you are invited!

  57. Michael Masnick

    Hey Fred,Like many of the other commenters here, often the trick to resetting involves one of the following: music, a great movie, family time, exercise or watching a baseball game. But, generally it depends on what’s really causing the funk.In general, though, I’ve found that purposely trying to hit the reset button doesn’t work. The reset always comes accidentally… when I’m doing something else.So, my recommendation: just do something different than usual, and don’t think of it as trying to hit the reset button. Just think of it as trying some new experiences, and eventually the reset comes automatically… when you least expect it.

  58. Cranky Kate

    Iron. It’s tactile and supremely satisfying. Watching wrinkles disappear gives me a nice sense of having accomplished something. I need loud music or mindless TV on if I’m trying to clear my thoughts, or else it becomes meditative & I stew while I’m doing it. If I’m trying to think through a problem though, silent ironing is perfect. Maybe it helps that I don’t bother ironing most of the time, so it doesn’t feel like a chore – it’s a trick I can pull out only when I really need it.

  59. ceonyc

    A year after you started dating, Joanne could have dumped your ass for a really lame and poorly conceived hunch that, for some reason, you weren’t the right guy… even though the future is pretty much unpredictable and you never know what life has in store.She didn’t, and that reason alone should be enough to defunkify and recogize that you are the luckiest man of the face of the earth. In fact, you should buy her some roses and tell her that. I promise I won’t tip her off as to where you got the idea. 🙂

    1. fredwilson

      I basically did that this afternoon. Took the afternoon off and spent it with her. You are right about me being lucky. You will be too. Tryst meFreed

      1. Dave

        Tryst me? Paging Dr. Freud . . .

  60. fred

    Fred,I would urge you to try Yoga. There are a few great studio’s in your neighborhood (and mine). I practice at OM Yoga, my wife prefers Jivamukti, and the Shala House is great too. All three are just south of union square on Broadway. I think OM offers the best introduction.I would only ask that you go with an open mind and try twice at a minimum.You will find your reset button – I have.Fred

  61. ValleyGrunt

    Becoming spiritual helps. By that, I mean consuming your favorite spirit in copious quantities 🙂

  62. sethlevine

    Fred – Having just come back from a great lunch hike up Mt. Sanitas (http://www.totalboulder.com… in an effort to recharge I can certainly extoll the virtues of an hour outside plugged into an iPod. I started the hike frustrated and ended feeling recharged (and pretty happy). Didn’t hurt that it’s 65 and sunny outside either . . .

  63. Greg

    For me an annual trip to St. Barths does wonders. Actually, despite the airport I feel relaxed the moment the plane takes off and I’m no longer connected.Though in the short term when I’m feeling out of it taking the time to relax and read is great. For me biographies work especially well (Andrew Carnegie, Rockefeller, Ben Franklin, etc…), though I also like Jessica Livingston’s Founders at Work.Good Luck!

  64. Jack

    I would get together some of your funniest/most fun friends and go out to a comedy club tonight. You’ll have a great time and get a much needed laugh. Maybe there are some good acts in NY tonight and tickets you can snag on craigslist?

  65. Jayne

    I have a variety funk-defeaters, depending on circumstance…. My daily dose is a cycle ride to work across London – a combination of beautiful parks with refreshing greenery, and the adrenalin of avoiding being splatted by the rest of the traffic. More medium term, I grow stuff in my allotment. Nature can’t be hurried much, and I find it very grounding (no pun intended). I can almost feel my heart beat slower and I’m definately more at peace, and what ever . But the biggie for me, is about taking some time out to *really connect* with another human being – partner, friend, offspring – who/how depends on circumstance, but knowing that there’s someone that really “gets you” (and you them) pretty much puts other stuff in perspective and invariably helps me see a way through.

  66. jodyreale

    It sounds deceptively simple, but I de-clutter. Anything, like a drawer, or a closet, or a garage. Then I usually eat something with bacon in it. (That last part is optional.)

  67. reece

    growing up, it was a jump in the ocean – anytime between April and November! also, playing drums did it for me before i moved to NYC. now it’s a good hard run in the park.

  68. JayR

    1. R.E.M.’s “What’s the Frequency Kenneth” at ear-splitting volume. I had a job about 12 years ago that I really hated and I played it in my car every morning (sometimes twice). Still works for me today.2. Travel guides. Trip planning is the ultimate escape.3. Texting my kids.

    1. fredwilson

      I love #3A text message from one of my kids always makes me happy

  69. amit

    Wow,Fred, from following your blog, I can deduce that you are healthy, are married to a wife (“gotham girl”) whom you love and who loves you, have wonderful smart children. You take requent vacations to places like Hawaii and Australia I also gather that on the financial front you have done well for yourself. On the business front, you seem to be involved in some of the hotter companies on the web.I should think that the mere act of taking stock of your personal situation and comparing it to the many people out there who may be sick, poor, out of a job, cannot afford to pay for gas, cannot afford to pay for the rising cost of food, cannot afford to provide their children a decent education etc. etc. should be enough to reset you and get you pumped up.best

  70. TimG

    reiki works for me.

  71. Kamlesh

    The best therapy for a rut is to scramble your life for a few days. The things that you do during the scramble depends on how adventurous of a person you are. A friend of mine went on a week long fest of tempting death (skydiving, bungeeing, rock-climbing, kayaking rapids, and a grotesquely long hike in bear country).For me, I will do something a little less crazier, but still effective. Last time, I tried snowboarding!

  72. Christopher Herbert

    I travel 3-4 nights a week (as a consultant). To help stay connected with my wife while we’re apart, we give each other assignments. She has to email me 1 picture of our son, every day. I have to drink 6 Nalgene’s of water and eat dinner by 9pm.But the best one is called “3 Things.” Each night, before I go to sleep, I email her 3 things that went well that day. It’s a good way to look back over the day and remember to be thankful for all the good stuff that happened.Someone once told me “Imagination is on fire.” I really like that description. Fire is a powerful force but if you don’t control it, it will quickly destroy everything. “3 Things” is a way to remind myself to focus on the positive.As a blogger, I find myself tempted to post these personal lists to my blog. But it’s also kind of nice to share something online just with my wife…..as a replacement for that intimacy that we miss out on while at home. Sometimes, in fact, email forces us to have conversations that are actually more real than the ones we’d have in person.anyways

  73. Eric

    Yoga is alright…but i find martial arts works wonders. A good one has a lot going on besides just hitting and getting hit.

    1. fredwilson

      I did yoga for most of the first half of this decade. But I’ve never done martial arts. I think I might give it a goFred

  74. siehmonster

    A lot of good suggestions. How about reading a few of the Psalms of David? They can be very centering and uplifting.

  75. howardlindzon

    i like to call verizon and threaten to cancel and just scream at someone.It’s quite invigorating and you usually get 25 bucks credit.Try it. works with t-mobile and att as well.:)

    1. fredwilson

      I should just call you and laugh for about 30 mins next time I get in a funk howardYou crack me up

      1. howardlindzon

        Thx dude

      2. howardlindzon

        check out my post on same fred

  76. Saffron Rainey

    Fred,My suggestion, and it is a great time of year to do it, is go for a good walk in the hills. Take a napsack with a piece as they say in Scotland ( some lunch) and head off. Try to scale the peak of large hill or small mountain, take in the view and appreciate all you have.Also why now is such a good time to take this walk is to look at nature coming out of its winter slumber. I imagine you are like me and are mostly thinking about the big picture, so use this walk to look at the small pictures in nature, the budding leaves, the birds nesting etc… I find this a great way to re-energies, re-centre re-new.YoursSaffron

  77. Audio Book Fanatic

    I’m sure you got lots of good advice. Seems to be a pretty common state of mind. Reset buttons were great on the old game consoles. You play Ms. Pacman and lose a guy before you get to the second scene, you just have to reset, because you are going for the hi score every time you play. For me, there is no reset button. I have four kids and no steady paycheck. I have found a formula that works, though. Maybe it isn’t a reset button, but a turbo button. Believe it or not, I have found solace in listening to audio books. I consume them. Not just any books, but business related non-fiction books work for me. I can get a full dose of a lifetime’s worth of wisdom from any number of brilliant people who were good enough to sit down and share their perspectives on the world. The last one I finished was a book about Fetzer Vineyards and how it was built from its roots into a major brand. Currently I’m listening to a book that draws a parallel among chess, business, and life. It is how I learned about Livermore, Hayek, Bernstein, etc. You can get all of these on the web at the NYPL website. And if you aren’t an audio person, I used to get my kicks by browsing the massive collection of books at the SIBL on Madison. The bottom line is, for me a reset button is the equivalent of a new idea, because once you open up another part of your brain, there is nothing but possibility in front of you. One more idea that you might explore, albeit a painful one, is to really dig deep and figure out why you feel you need a reset button and make some changes so you don’t end up here again. Another great book to pick up is Waitzkin’s on the Art of Learning.

  78. ben

    one word, sports. play it or watch it – almost impossible to not totally focus on that, allowing you to escape all else.

  79. scott crawford

    Take time out for some original art; the more reductionist the better. Really sink into it, and appreciate the connection to the artist, the interpretation, the flow, the spirit behind the original inspiration. There’s love at the center.

  80. SWL

    Not to take a slightly different approach (as all this stuff works) but I would ask yourself– what is bothering you. Clearly something is stressing you out– portfolio company? family issue? politics? More than likely you will quickly realize what the issue is and that alone makes a big difference– acknowledging to yourself what it is. Then attack it.

  81. Aruni S. Gunasegaram

    As entrepreneurs, I think we have to press that Reset Button often. What a great list of comments. I also try to focus on things outside of the day to day. I started taking yoga at the beginning of this year and that has been a great experience! Reading books like A New Earth (which I’m almost done with), Siddhartha, The Power of Now, etc. helps give one a different philosophical perspective.Sometimes when you feel this way it may be a sign to a) pause and check to make sure you are doing the right thing with your life now and aren’t just continuing to do what you do because you think you must because you feel you and others have already defined you/your life or b) take a nap. 🙂

    1. fredwilson

      Plan b is infinitely easier.But plan a is neccessary at times

  82. SiriusJoy

    There’s rarely anything high-stress in my life that watching a couple of episodes of The Sopranos can’t alleviate to a significant degree, at least temporarily. First and foremost, relief comes from the Lord of course. By His Spirit. Prayer. Touring a few chapters of the Psalms reminds me I’m not alone in my angst & will ultimately triumph, always… For a chaser, I’ll chug a chapter from the assurance-rich writings of Isaiah… refills my HOPE reservoirs & I’m good to go…

  83. Charles D.

    Looking for faults in other people works well for me and I never have a shortage of material.

  84. rloughery

    try to get a good night of sleep – then wake up early and do something active and outside… doesn’t matter what the weather is like. For me it clears the head and gets recharges the brain.

  85. Marcus Jordan

    This may sound weird but I promise it works..this “reset button” will have to be pressed down for two days:1. Have an hour session of sex, with a hot shower afterwards.2. When morning comes, have breakfast by yourself somewhere “meditative” and spend at least 30-45 minutes thinking only about where you’ve started from when you had nothing to where you are to date.After the “journey” meditation…you would’ve remembered, understood, and appreciated why you work/live/love the way you do and you’ll be ready to attack the future with a vengenence!Or until you WANT to push the “reset” button again versus NEEDING to…lol. Hope it helps.

  86. Leila Boujnane

    Fred: it is very simple: running is your answer. I know you received over a hundred comments about what to do. Forget about all the comments that are not centered on running. Running is your answer. And if you really need to combine it with something else you can add some biking (mountain biking preferably). You got any running shoes around? Grab them and get outside. Now.

    1. fredwilson

      I had to give up running because of my knees about five years agoBiking is what I do nowFred

      1. Leila Boujnane

        Oh darn. darn. darn. Ok biking it is then. I pray my knees don’t give out. If I can’t run I don’t know what I will ever do. Good luck. Keep us posted on your reset!

  87. dean

    help others. serve the poor

  88. vruz

    art does that for me.drawing, painting, playing the guitar, writing, photography, filmmaking.I’m not into performing arts though, I don’t recommend starting a career in ballet when you’re past 30 and over 6.0′.:-)

  89. Davis

    yoga…..yoga….yoga…. leave all your worries on the mat…

  90. Andy Gadiel

    Thanks for posting this Fred. I’ve been thinking a lot about this idea myself, as I’ve been feeling a bit of funk with a lot of travel and work.Your reader’s responses have been extremely inspiring and helpful, lending to the notion that the ‘wisdom of the crowds’ is a real and true thing in our modern web world.As I fired up Rhapsody looking for the perfect song to set the mood, I was drawn to Neil Young’s “Helpless”. I remember years ago that I used to start my day with an entire Neil Young Rhapsody mix. It would just make everything perfect.Enjoy: http://www.rhapsody.com/got

  91. michael

    nothing better than working out fred…i religiously spend time with my trainer 1 day a week and do cardio…turn off the noise Fred!!!!…Type “A” personalities don’t need a reset button…they need an ‘off’ button!

  92. McDouglas

    heroin does it for me.

  93. Dhru Purohit

    How do you feel now Fred? Would love to see a post on what you did and how you feel now.Also, I think just seeing all these comments from people who obviously care about you has to have lifted your spirits.On a personal level, when I’m in a funk, I listen The Power of Now on audio book.Cheers

    1. fredwilson

      DhrumilI did a post the following day valled funkalimination that answers your questionsThanksFred

  94. WearSunScreen

    Something that I do is to watch the clip Wear Sunscreen. It was completely created with excerpts of commercials, however in the clip the purpose of the excerpts is to make you happier, instead of to try to sell something to you, as in the original commercials.http://www.youtube.com/watc

  95. meierhoefer

    Fantastic thread, but I find that a Funk is something deeper than stress. I can’t just NOT do something and expect to Reset.A quick re-read of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance usually does the trick.

  96. fredL

    Amazing how many similar techniques are mentioned here — running, music,new environment. When I need to hit the reset button with 22-ounce wafflehead framing hammer, I’ll try all three simultaneously, but you usually the first two work.

  97. TheGloveOfWillieMontanez

    Hey Fred ——I’m the guy that Jonathan mentioned to you —– who walked the length of B’way. I highly recommend it. A friend and I had something to discuss, something serious, and we couldn’t imagine, for example, being interrupted by a waiter or having it sit in our bellies as we slumped in our chairs. We wanted to process it, and movement felt right. (This is how the Athenians did it —– the Parthenon was meant to be walked in pairs, as if it were an exquisitely ordered grove of trees.) So we walked and talked, intensely for the first 75 blocks or so, and intermittently thereafter. The movement moved inward and it became a meditative event. And of course it’s like passing through history too —– the neighborhoods that most of us know so well become tight, intense strata layered at the base of the island after having marched the first 200 blocks. They feel small and even precious.Enjoy, and keep up the great mix!

    1. fredwilson

      I really want to do this, even more nowThanks for stopping by and leaving the commentfred

  98. fredwilson

    You know I missed my sunday afternoon nap this week. That may well be part of it!