In my clinical practice, I see many people who report their reason for seeking counseling as feeling "stuck". This is commonly described as putting in effort and not achieving the result desired. When this feeling is explored at a deeper level, it is often connected to a sense of not-having control. It could be a personal matter, the professional environment or a combination of many factors contributing to this feeling. No matter what is causing it, there is one key thing a person can do to help get themselves 'unstuck' and moving in the direction of their dreams again.
Feeling stuck is something people usually blame on their external environment. While I certainly acknowledge that external circumstances have a role in creating the situations, if we are looking to get 'unstuck', there is only one way to do it. We need to stop looking at the cause, or someone or something to blame for the situation, and start searching for the solution. Focusing on the challenges that created the reality you are unhappy with only increases your sense of loss of control and leads to more unhappiness. To get 'unstuck' we need to stop looking outside at the issues we cannot control and start looking at the areas we can directly influence; our attitudes and our actions.
By focusing on the things we can control, we take our power back. By committing to making changes within ourselves we can break out of the cycle of feeling stuck and realize our actions and attitudes can make a difference. If you find yourself feeling stuck, examine your priorities and long term goals. When you do this, it is likely you will find almost none of your daily efforts are in line with activities that will help you accomplish these goals. This is where that stuck feeling is coming from. By setting aside as little as ten minutes a day and directing that time to efforts in line with your personal priorities, you can make a huge difference in how you feel about your situation.
It is so easy for us to sit back and blame our circumstances on our surroundings. By looking inside and seeing what action steps we can take to start moving forward again, we can start to make progress. Once progress is being realized, the feeling that you are stuck and your efforts do not matter slowly melt away and you are left with a sense of empowerment. It is amazing how much you can accomplishment with ten minutes of focused attention and effort each day. What are you waiting for? Get unstuck today by identifying your priorities and long term goals and taking action steps to help get you there.