You know the feeling when you get stuck. Spinning your wheels and feeling frustrated. Too tired to get things moving. Floundering throughout the day. Feeling a little insecure and insufficient.
Since this has happened to me A LOT in my life, I took a few moments to look back and see what I did to get out of my rut.
Here are my top 10 tips for getting unstuck FAST
1. Take a time out.
The fastest way to stop spinning your wheels is to just stop. Right? If your car was stuck in the snow and you tried and tried and tried to get out, with no traction, what would you do? I am going to guess that you would stop, put on your thinking cap, and probably make a call for some help. The same is true when you are stuck with something in your life. Just stop for a bit. Take a break and either walk away for a while until some insight starts to show up, or call somebody and get some help.
2. Write down an intention.
An intention is “a determination to act in a certain way”. I often call it the “fake it until you make it” tool. Is there somebody you want to be but can’t figure out how to get there? It often helps to write down the intention and ruminate on it for a while. It might be something like “I am a person who is capable of guiding people to a higher ground using CliftonStrengths and Mind Mapping”. This was a completely new role for me in the beginning, so I needed to get comfortable in my head with the idea before I even met with my first client. I journaled about it for a while until my vision became clearer and clearer, started taking action, and one day I actually did it!
3. Eat some fruit and veggies, and drink some water.
Often, I find that if I am stuck on something, my energy is super sluggish. It doesn’t take long to look at what I have been feeding myself to realize that I have been eating junk! By committing to eating lots of fruit and vegetables for my next few meals, I will be infusing my body with real energy and nutrients found in fresh food. “You are what you eat” is my golden rule yet I often forget and just grab anything near me (which is using lacking in nutrients). I also can get INSTANT energy from chugging 2-3 large glasses of water. Works every time!
4. Take a 5-minute Energy Release break.
This is a really simple form of meditation. Close your eyes and get quiet. Starting from your head, notice where there is tension. Assume that your tension was absorbed from someone else (which is often the case). Release it into the Universe by blowing it out through your mouth, allowing that space to be “cleared”. Continue to work your way down to your toes with the same process. You will be amazed at how relaxed you feel!
5. Count your blessings.
There is ALWAYS someone who’s life is worse than yours, such as people who are starving right now. There are people with no home or money. There are people who have had a debilitating accident leaving them paralyzed. There are people being controlled and oppressed by their government. There are people with severe mental illnesses or diseases. There are people who would LOVE to be you and have access to all that you have! You are fortunate in SOME WAY–what is that way? See yourself from the eyes of someone who has less, and gain a new appreciation for YOUR blessed life.
6. Love yourself.
No one can love you better than you can love yourself, because you know yourself the best! I like to keep a page in my journal that lists all the things that make me happy. When I am stuck on something, I will open the page and pick something loving for me to do. Sometimes it’s just lying on the floor and stretching like a cat, or pulling out an essential oil that makes me happy. Occasionally, I even write a love letter to myself and pop it in the mail!
7. Schedule a play date.
You know the old saying: Work hard and play hard. It reflects a balanced life and we all need that. Too many people put vast amounts of time into work, and neglect to match it with quality playtime. One of the best ways to get maximum playtime results is to pretend you are a visitor in your town. Visit historical features, window shop in those impractical boutiques, or eat lunch (more affordable) at a swanky restaurant.
8. Journal about your desires, or talk to a friend about them.
My well-established morning habit of journaling (in an Evernote doc) has revealed SO much of what I desire, what is getting me stuck, what works and does not work for me, and how to gracefully recover when I fail. By articulating my ideas (either in writing or to a friend), I free my brain up to move forward with new thoughts. Give it a try!
9. Start getting to know yourself better.
This can be done through counseling, coaching, personality assessments, talent assessments (like CliftonStrengths), surveys, horoscopes, psychics, friends, family, partner. Being open to personal reflection and growth will boost this process along greatly. It often helps to also establish some role models who can help you define the person into which you would like to grow.
10. Consider getting help.
Sometimes you can get in a rut so deep, that your best efforts can hardly budge you forward. Look around you and ask for help. It could be a friend, counselor, coach, teacher, or a professional advisor. Life is too short to let yourself be stuck for long. Develop a strategy, take some action, and you will be on your way–just being you at your best!
Photo credit: iStockphoto/xavigm
ABOUT GALLUP-CERTIFIED STRENGTHS COACH, KAT FRATI: I help grownups (young and old) who are feeling a bit lost, discover their hidden talents and get back on their path–with renewed vigor and strength. When life feels overwhelming, it is often helpful to take a break, gather new tools and supplies, and refocus on a clear vision. Working together, you and I will begin with the end in mind and (using talents you were born with) start creating an action plan for your journey. As you begin to write your own story, you will discover hidden superpowers and potential that you couldn’t see before. It isn’t long before you are on your way again—just being you at your best!