One thing I know for sure is it sucks to be stuck. You feel like your entire life is driving fast past you and you’re the only one at a standstill.
Everything feels like a chore when you’re stuck. Your arms feel like a heavy weight you can’t raise towards the sky to ask for help – after all, you’re not a weightlifter. Your feet drag as you try to run to your destination making you feel like the slowest living being alive. You scratch your brain cells in search of the cheat code to answer the one question that could be your saving grace: ‘How – just how – do I get unstuck?’.
It’s a weird one really. Although your feet are firm on the ground, there’s this spiralling sensation you turn down easily. It sticks to you aggressively, like a flame you can’t put out no matter how hard you blow. Like falling in a ditch that leads nowhere or walking through a tunnel with no light at the end. All you see is darkness. In your ear, you either hear deafening noise or scary quiet and none of it is comforting.
No part of this feels unnatural, remembering what it’s like to be stuck. It was just nearly a year ago I was so lost in that emotion. If I close my eyes a little, I can feel it clearly; that anxious state of mind I couldn’t shake back when all I hoped I could do was take a step forward.
There was desperation in me mixed with tired emotions, and all I really wanted was a road sign.
Sadly, there was no quick fix. It wasn’t like baking a cake or fixing up a drawer. There was no recipe or manual. Like most things in adulting I was left in a mess I was in charge of cleaning up, and I wasn’t sure which part of my body had the ‘start’ button.
It took time to feel like myself again. To get my hands on the tools I needed for the clean-up in order to feel at home with myself again. Today, I’ll be sharing some things that worked for me in the past. Remember, there is no overnight remedy, but here are a few places you can start:
Try A Different Dance.
If you were to ride the same roller coaster ride over and over again, day and night for weeks or months even, would you still deem it fun? Enjoyable? A thrill?
There’s no way the average person would. In fact, by the third consecutive ride chances are you’d already be sick to your stomach. By the fifth ride, the novelty of it all would be sucked dry and the view from the top will no longer look all that impressive. Even the light that shined through your eyes would disappear in a quick instance too.
Going round in circles in life can be exhausting. When the effort you put in continues to yield no fruit repeatedly, it’s difficult not to get discouraged or stuck. Maybe it’s time to try a different dance. It might be the perfect time to cross the line to the other side of your comfort zone – see what happens!
Embrace Brutal Honesty And Naked Truths.
Is it time to be candid about the reason you are feeling stuck in life? Is it time to turn up the volume to that voice in your head that causes you to freak out a little?
It’s time to pick up the mirror and stare deep in it for a while. It’s time to face yourself. Look straight in the eye of all the pain you’ve been hiding, the confrontations you’ve been avoiding, the person you’ve been afraid of becoming. It may be daunting to be in a room alone with ugly truths you keep saving for later. But maybe – just maybe – that’s a good place to start.
Let The Milk Spill.
Whenever I felt stuck in the past, it was as though I was either losing control, or I had already lost it. It’s important to learn to let go and let things be. Sometimes, the most important part of the process is losing it.
This might mean you may have a breakdown or two. It might mean allowing yourself to shed a few tears in an empty bathtub. This might mean swimming in milk that’s been spilt for a moment.
Give some space for your emotions to be felt judgement-free before trying to pick yourself back up. Some wounds don’t heal when they’re rushed. Take a moment to breathe then try again.
Set Your Emotions Free And Trap Them On A Page.
I think writing down the emotions that keep you caged is a great way to unlock them. Take it from me, I started a blog for that very reason!
I recently watched a clip from an interview where Anne Hathaway describes a ritual in which she uses the power of written words to destress. What she does is fairly simple. She lights a candle then sets a 12-minute timer and jots down everything that comes to mind – without giving it too much thought. Once the timer goes off, she stops, puts her pen down and sets the words troubling her on fire.
Now, although that might sound like a potential fire hazard, I think the main objective is to be able to see the thoughts that live on the inside vividly. Also, writing them down makes the weight of words a little lighter and watching them turn to ash is a reminder that those too can become nothing in the end.
Baby Steps Lead Somewhere Nonetheless.
I think a major issue about feeling stuck is that you begin to feel as though your next move has to be life-changing. That’s what often stops you in your tracks and keeps you believing the hurdle in front is too hard to surpass.
Truth is, it’s the baby steps that push you towards the light again, little by little. Your first nervous step may not be big, break any boundaries or make any noise that will be acknowledged. It may be small, contained, and silent. But when the discomfort of stagnation begins to feel like your home and becomes painfully familiar, that baby step might as well be a giant one in disguise.
Your restless romantic roamer