Have you been wondering if you’ve somehow gotten stuck, with your life not developing at the pace you expected?
Sometimes you can travel along in life for quite some time without realising that you aren’t actually going anywhere. At the time, there’s a vague sense of unease, but once you realise that you’ve been treading water you might notice that things start to get a bit (or a lot!) more uncomfortable.
It can be very frustrating. You may even feel trapped or helpless.
The good news is that no matter how soul-sucking things feel now, there are steps you can take to free yourself and live a fulfilling, engaged life.
How to tell if I’m ‘stuck’ in life
If you’re concerned about being stuck, you quite likely are.
But DON’T PANIC!
The realisation that you’re stuck can actually be a really good thing, helping to power you towards playing at the next level. They say that the way to fix a problem is to start by acknowledging it, so start right now by taking stock of where you are in life.
Think about how satisfied you are with the following areas: Business/Career, Finances, Health, Family and Friends, Romance, Personal Growth, Fun and Recreation, and Physical Environment. You could even do an online assessment, like this one: the Wheel of Life.
If you ranked particularly low in one or more areas, this could indicate parts of your life where you’re trapped in unhelpful habits or patterns.
Why do I feel stuck?
Usually people feel stuck when their hopes, dreams or values are not being fulfilled in real life.
Being stuck is like being trapped in an old software version – of your life! It’s not exactly that there’s anything wrong with it. In fact, at one time, being in this place was might even have been great. It’s just that it no longer serves you NOW.
As for why you’re stuck, there are heaps of different reasons, including feelings of defensiveness and an inability to let release past traumas. If you feel that this may be part of your challenge, it can be very helpful to speak to a caring and trusted GP about the best strategies for your situation.
Most commonly, however, people get stuck because of EXPECTATIONS – your own or other peoples.
Your own expectations
If your self esteem has taken one too many knocks around the block, you might develop false beliefs about the kind of life you deserve.
And since people tend to only achieve to the level they believe they deserve, this can really hold you back from reaching your true potential.
Other people’s expectations
The other reason we sometimes hold ourselves back – consciously or unconsciously – is to fit in with other people’s expectations.
Maybe you feel that if your business was too successful, it might leave your husband feeling threatened by your success.
Or you might come from a family where everyone is expected to work in a certain industry.
Living according to these expectations can cost you the opportunity to explore your own strengths and passions.
How to stop feeling stuck
So now to the good bit – how to break free of the thoughts, beliefs and habits that are holding you back from living your life to its absolute fullest!
Firstly, make sure you’ve taken the time to take stock of your life. Do the quiz linked above and jot answers to the following questions in a journal:
- Where am I in life at the moment?
- Where do I want to be?
- Barriers: Why am I not there yet? What sort of things are holding me back or getting in my way?
And then for each of the above barriers, note down which you can change, and think of something you can do to go around the problem if it isn’t something easy to change. Bonus points for coming up with a way to turn it to your advantage!
How momentum can help me get unstuck
Now that you know what you need to do and have a plan around it, it’s time to harness the power of momentum.
If you’re stuck, momentum may have been carrying you along in the wrong direction for some time. Now it’s time to turn it to your advantage!
Start with small actions on a regular basis that move you towards your goal.
To learn to master momentum, check out my recent blog post here or grab a copy of my book, The Healthy Habit Hotseat for a full healthy habit make-over. You’ll learn all the best healthy habits to follow daily to get you unstuck and powering towards your goals! Get the book here.