Do you ever feel stuck? Like you are doing the same thing every day, getting the same result, and wondering why this is so? Yep. Happens to all of us at some point in our lives. In fact, it is possible that it happens often.
On any given week, I would say that I get stuck multiple times. True. Really. I have no issue owning my stuckness, as it is inside of being stuck that you learn to become unstuck. How?
Well, let’s take a look at 4 things to notice and 4 ways you can, right now, today, if you choose, move from stuck to unstuck.
1. Notice Frustration and Worry
When we are stuck, emotions like frustration and worry arise more often. Why? Because internally we know that the actions we are taking are not working. They are, rather, a product of being in a rut. Or, being stuck.
As I wrote about in The Stories We Are Told and The Stories We Tell Ourselves: Becoming Limitless, we are the ones that get ourselves stuck. And, it happens inside of limited thinking. We believe we are limited in some way when we are stuck. Or, we believe we already know all there is to know about a particular subject or topic. Issue?
Yes. Why? Because it is an impossibility for anyone to know everything there is to know on any subject or topic. Really. Impossible.
1. What can you do if you are thinking, feeling, and acting this way?
- Once you notice your frustration and worry, stop what you are doing. Really. Stop. Take a break, and think about the thoughts you are having. Are you considering all options? Or, are you merely reacting to the situation at hand? Important distinction.
- Then, ask someone their opinion. Seriously. Often, when I am stuck, it is someone else that shows me another way forward. The coolest part about this? That you get unstuck and learn something new at the same time. Pretty cool.
2. Notice your own fear, especially of the unknown
Ah, I’ve written a lot about fear. In Fear of the Unknown: Take A Stand and Take Action Anyway, I write about getting out of our own way. Seriously. Read any self-development book, and in it you will read about getting out of your own way. Is it easy? No. Not at first.
Yet, like anything we do, it gets easier the more we practice getting out of our own way. When you experience fear about an action you are thinking about taking, more than likely it is a product of an innate need to look good or be right. Yep.
We are so concerned that we might look silly or foolish, we don’t take action, or we take action within a limited framework. Which, when you really think about it, is kinda silly and foolish.
In order to become unstuck from our fear, we must be vulnerable; and, take the action there is to take, especially when we feel nervous. When you are nervous, you are growing. Yep. At that moment, you are growing your own developmental spectrum.
2. What can you do if you are allowing fear to keep you stuck?
- Take the actions anyway. Move forward. Let go of the need to look good, and be right. When we are stuck in looking good or being right, we cannot grow. There is absolutely no growth with that mindset.
- A growth mindset is about being open, vulnerable, and the practical knowledge that we know way less than there is to know.
- Learn to become comfortable in not knowing, and looking silly. You will find that when you take action from a standpoint of not knowing, and being okay with “looking silly” that people will actually respond to you. Why? Because they have the exact same fears. The exact same. When you get outside of your fear, you will inspire them.
3. Notice when you are avoiding situations, tasks, or contexts
In the post, 3 Reasons Why Avoidance is an Ineffective Strategy, I write about why avoidance is ineffective. Essentially when we are avoidant, we are contributing to our own stuckness. We are. Why?
Because we are actively resisting a situation, task, or context, which means in that area of our life, we are stuck. Yep. When we avoid, we don’t move forward. We standstill. Stuck.
Further, when we avoid, we can also feel off, and not so well. Frustration, worry, and anxiety can be higher because internally we know we are avoiding something that needs our attention. See, we can’t get out of ourselves. Even when we think we can get out of it, we can’t.
However, when we are open to our own avoidance, we can actively choose to notice it, and begin to consider how to move forward. It doesn’t mean that that area of our life will move forward all at once, or simply. Noticing our avoidance, however, does mean we are now open to creating movement.
3. What can you do when you are being avoidant?
- Pay attention to those situations, tasks, and contexts that you are avoiding. When you notice them, stop yourself and ask, why. Why are you being avoidant? Get to that reason if you can.
- Whether the reason is at the surface or not, begin to consider things you can do to move forward. Once you choose an action, take it. No matter how small. Take that action. It will be uncomfortable. Especially at first.
- Remember though, it is inside of the continual actions we take every day that comfort will come. And, comfort in what is uncomfortable today will come. It will.
4. Notice when you are holding tight to your current reality, and begin to let go
In the post, Creating Your Life Anew by Letting Go of The Life You Are Currently Living, I write about the necessity of letting go of the life, or reality, you are currently living in order to live a new one.
It is the same as being stuck. When we hold tight to our current reality, we cannot let go. Impossible. We are then stuck. Essentially, holding onto our current reality is being stuck. They are synonymous. Why?
Because you cannot become unstuck from that which you are stuck to. We must learn to let go. If we do not, we end up living in a false reality where things are static and do not change. Yet, that is not the real world. The world changes with or without our consent. Just look at the current reality right now.
4. What can you do when you are holding tight to your current reality?
- Practice letting go. Choose an aspect of your life that you believe you are stuck in, and begin to consider what about that current reality you can live without. And, let go.
- Once you’ve let go of that aspect of your current reality, create something new to fill that reality, to move forward.
- As with the other suggestions, you can focus on smaller aspects of your life where you are stuck first. Practice, practice.
- When you’ve practiced letting go in smaller aspects of your life, you may be ready to try something larger. Take it one step at a time. Slowly. There is no hurry here.
Alright, there are 4 things to notice, and 4 ways to move from stuck to unstuck. Remember, being stuck is a normal part of life; and becoming unstuck is a wonderful learning experience.
Moving from stuck to unstuck is a developmental growth process. You simply need to be open to notice when you are stuck, and then to take a different action in that area of your life.
My invitation to you
Notice when you are stuck. Be at peace with it. It is okay, normal. Once noticed, create a new action in that area of your life. When you’ve created that new action, create the next one, and then the next one. And, so on. I think you will be surprised at what you get back.