Getting Unstuck

There is nothing more painful than the feeling of being stuck in a life that you want to change.  For me, it’s worse than having a really bad toothache (and I’ve had many of them), because at least with a toothache there is a definite solution—you can drag yourself off to a dentist! 

But being stuck is like being super-glued to a circumstance that you think has no solution and no way out—and that hurts big time.

Fifteen years ago I was super-glued to a man who made me miserable.  I lived five long years sitting on the fence wondering whether I should stay or leave.  When you’re unable to make a decision it’s like living in limbo, in no man’s land.  And little did I know it back then, but that limbo place was having a profound effect on every part of my life.  It was like having a piece of grit in my eye.  I couldn’t really get on and give myself 100% to anything, because I was always being reminded of this thing I didn’t want, this piece of grit, this life I had.

When you are stuck in life, it seems as if nothing is moving in any direction.  But that’s actually not true.  As long as you are breathing and alive, energy is always moving.  What’s actually happening is that you just keep thinking the same thoughts, and so nothing changes.  There is no movement forward or backward.  You’re just stuck in the same place.

For me, I spent five years thinking…

  • I won’t be able to support myself living on my own.

  • If I leave him, he’ll be devastated.

  • My family will think I’m fickle and irresponsible.

  • I’ll end up living alone my whole life.

Can you feel the exhaustion in those thoughts?

If you are super-glued to something you don’t like, here are a few suggestions to begin getting unstuck:

1.     Make peace with where you are:  You are where you are, and there’s no sense in pushing against it and making things worse.  Instead, become curious about what the universe is trying to tell you and show you about your preferences.  When you get tangled up in your own negative emotions about where you don’t want to be in life, you create more of the same.  Like attracts like.

2.     Journal.  This process will bring up YOUR weaknesses (which is really what being stuck is all about).  Write down the thoughts that make you feel stuck.  Identify how and why you feel stuck.  Who are you trying to protect or please?  Why?  What are you afraid will happen if you make a decision. Get clear on what you don’t want in your life.

3.     Evaluate the cost:  What is the cost to you for staying stuck?  How does it feel in your body?  What are you missing out on by not deciding?  What would you gain if you made a decision?

4.     What would you prefer:  Every day, write a new story of where you would like to be in your life.  What would be ideal for you?  Get yourself to the feeling place of where you want to be.  Break the habit of thinking thoughts that make you feel stuck.

5.     And last, but not least:  Take small incremental steps that take you in a different direction.  Drive to work a different way, eat different food, express how you really feel, reveal a preference, and drop thoughts that don’t feel good.  When you are stuck there’s a tendency to want to DO something to fix it.  Actually what is needed to for you to FEEL your way out.  Find things that FEEL better.  Let go of the thoughts that FEEL bad.  Keep your GOOD vibrations alive.

What’s interesting is that once I made the decision to leave my relationship, every single thought that had kept me stuck turned out to be the opposite.  I was able to support myself; my partner ended up happier when I left him; my family fully supported me; I ended up getting married six months later to someone who was a perfect match for me.  And, the earth didn’t fall off its axis.

I have one last nugget for you.  Think about all the time and energy you spend feeling stuck.  Think about all the time you waste thinking about the so-called chaos you are going to cause if you make a decision.  And think about all the wonderful things you could be doing with that time in your life if it wasn’t for those super-glued thoughts.

So my friend, what are YOU going to do?

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