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Stuck... What Does It Mean? A Nine Step Plan To Get Unstuck

Feb 10, 2008
Frequently clients state that they feel "stuck". What does it mean when someone expresses that they are stuck or feel stuck?

Some of the things feeling "stuck" can mean:

- They have a wide range of potential options and are unclear as to how to narrow down their choices and focus on one.

- They have a wide range of options, but none of the options excites them.

- They have a wide range of options, but don't really want to pursue any of them.

- There is information they need, but they are unsure as to where or how to get that information.

- There are skills they need, but they don't know how to get the skills or don't think they can afford the training.

- They have not become intensely excited about any particular choice.

- They are in the fantasy stage of their efforts, and have not yet gotten clear on the realities of any particular pursuit.

- They do not have the confidence that they can succeed at their desired choice.

- There may be "nuts and bolts"...logistical type information they are lacking, such as, "I don't know how to do taxes for a business."

- They do not have support of any kind so they are afraid to make the choice they really desire.

- There may be relocation issues between them and their choice (moving to another area for training or access).

- There are also times when a person feels stuck because excessive clutter and years' worth of accumulations would need to be disposed of before any goal-oriented action could commence.

- There might be relationship issues that make them feel stuck (bad marriage needs to be dissolved, negative or interfering family members need to be handled).

- The person may be in a demanding, stressful, unfulfilling job that leaves little time, energy, or "thinking time".

- They may be stuck in old, unsupportive thoughts or behavior patterns that keep them playing small in the same old place, afraid to take a chance.

- They may have chronic illness or physical disabilities that limit their productive time.

- They may have limitations in their social skills (such as being shy or uncomfortable meeting new people).

Now that we have some ideas about what people mean when they say they are stuck, how can they get unstuck?

1. One thing that helps is to shift your energy by consciously moving out of any "ruts". If you always drive the same roads, choose a new route. If you always do things one way, purposely do things differently. Go new places. Meet new people. Explore new venues. Check out anything or any place you feel curious about.

2. If you have a spiritual practice, double your time on it, focusing on getting unstuck. If you don't have a spiritual practice, consider exploring and adopting one (or more).

3. If you have any "hunches" or inklings, listen to them, and make a point of pursuing more information in that direction. If your life is always busy, busy, busy and you haven't time to think, give serious consideration to eliminating activities and create quiet and contemplative time for yourself. Use this time to ponder potential ways to get "unstuck".

4. Do you know what you want to pursue, but feel stuck financially? Use the quiet time to strategize on the best way to shift your finances.

5. Consider getting a coach who can help you get unstuck and support your positive actions and growth.

6. Do some research on the Internet and see what ideas and possibilities reveal themselves.

7. Work on identifying your areas of stuckness and creating a plan of action to solve the issues.

8. Sometimes, the thing to do to get ideas is to relax, take some time off, stop pushing so hard and intentionally empty your brain for a while (not to be confused with any use of substances). Coming back refreshed, you often get more and better ideas.

9. Consider whether you might be depressed. It might be at the root of the stuck feeling. If so, consider medical options--at least until you can get some momentum going in your life.

Realize that we all feel stuck at times in life. It is nothing to be ashamed of, but we don't have to stay stuck. Happy progress to you!
About the Author
Suzi Elton is a success coach working with "difference makers" to effect positive change living their highest life purpose. She has coached hundreds of clients to approach goals strategically with tiny steps to bring about quantum leaps. Free Life Purpose exercises: http://mylifepurposecoaching.com.
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