So… you feel stuck in life, hate where you are, but you have no idea how to make things better. Whether it’s a bad job, a difficult relationship, money problems or something else, it’s easy to spend sleepless night after sleepless night racking your brains for the magical solution you’re certain is out there… if you just think hard enough. But life transformation expert Sophia Davis says that it’s this desire to think your way out of stuckness that’s ironically keeping you stuck in life. As she explains below, you have to stop thinking and start feeling if you want to break free from stuckness and get your life back on track again. Here’s how to do so in three steps.
I hate where I am but can’t see a way out
The first thing to understand about being stuck is that it’s just a feeling. But as a feeling that’s triggered by specific life situations, it’s all too easy to buy into it and consider it an unequivocal truth. If you have a job you hate but you have a mortgage to pay and you live in a small town with few job opportunities, it can feel like an absolute truth that you have to stay in that job – there simply is no other option.
When faced with the belief that you’re trapped, the natural stress response that protects us all from physical danger kicks in: fight, flight or freeze. And because stuckness is all about feeling trapped, the vast majority of us freeze rather than fight or flee.
Why do I feel so stuck?
The truth of the matter is that whenever the feeling of stuckness rears its ugly head, the real problem at hand is overwhelm. Life hasn’t gone as planned and you can’t think of a realistic way to get out of the situation you’re in without making things even worse. As a result, your mind becomes completely overwhelmed, your ability to make decisions disappears and you essentially shut down – just like a computer tasked with running too many programmes and updates at the same time.
And just as the only way to get a crashed computer back in action is to close it down and restart, the first step in getting unstuck in life involves closing down your brain by turning your focus to your body.
How to get unstuck in three steps
Step one: When you genuinely feel stuck in life, you have to experience the feeling of stuckness within your body instead of trying to process it with your mind. Why? Because moving your attention to your body gives the mind a much-needed opportunity to clear. And as the overwhelm response happens in the mind, when you come into the body to experience that feeling of stuckness as a physical – rather than emotional – sensation, the mind starts to clear itself, the feelings start to move through the body and the fears that underlie the stuckness begin to emerge.
The best way to move the feeling of being stuck from the mind and into the body is to identify where exactly that feeling of stuckness lies in your body and what it feels like. You may feel sensations like a tightness in the belly or a clenching of the hips. Alternatively, you may notice that when you ask yourself ‘Where do I feel stuck?’ you find that the feeling of stuckness doesn’t actually exist within your body – you’re not stuck, you just think you are based on what you see and hear happening around you each day.
Step two: Once that feeling of overwhelm has dissolved and your mind feels much clearer, you’ll find that you’re in the calmer frame of mind in which rational decisions can be made. This is the point at which you should reach out for some help and support. Never underestimate the power of support. A big part of feeling stuck is the perception that you’re completely alone. When you’re able to gather a few supportive people around you, that feeling of isolation improves and your confidence in your decision-making abilities grows… because you know there are people around to catch you if needed.
Step three: It’s time to make a plan. Armed with a clear mind and a support system, you’ll find that you’re better placed to make a well thought out plan that’s focused on getting you to where you want to be rather than a knee-jerk response designed solely to remove you from your current situation, regardless of the long-term consequences.
So to recap, if you feel stuck in life and can’t see a way out, follow this three-stage process.
- Come into your body and clear your mind by feeling what being stuck feels like
- When your mind is clear, gather some support
- Make a plan
Are you struggling with feeling stuck in life or have you overcome a period of being stuck? Let us know what type of support you think you need or what worked for you below.
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