We humans often tend to get in our own way –– whether it comes to going back to toxic relationships, not speaking or standing up for ourselves, or giving up on that new diet we know could help us, instead, we stay right where we are in life, stuck in a rut not making any progress. And making progress is one of the keys to lifelong happiness.
Why do people feel stuck in life?
We were told why bad habits are so hard to break, and plenty of research suggests that. We are well aware that we actually have two brains: one is thoughtful, superconscious, deliberate, and the other is the automatic self that makes up most decisions sometimes without us even noticing it. That’s why we often feel stuck, but there is the key to dealing with it.
1. You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with – Jim Rhon
Let’s start by looking around. Who are your friends? Who do you spend most of your time with? Maybe your circle has something to do with you feeling stuck? Remember the crab mentality? The metaphor derives from a pattern of peculiar behavior noted in crabs when they are trapped in a bucket. A crab placed alone in a bucket will quickly climb out and escape, but when you put it with a few of its mates, this interesting phenomenon occurs: one at a time, as the crabs try to escape, other crabs will pull them back down to their misery and the group’s collective demise. Thanks to this phenomenon, the fisherman can leave the bucket without a lid, secure in the knowledge that every time one crab tries to escape, the other will pull him back down. Unfortunately, the crab mentality is often translated into human behavior.
Remember, you can’t change the people around you, but you can always surround yourself with people that would encourage and support you on your growth journey.
2. You Became Aware That You Are Stuck, Now What?!
I felt stuck in life many times. Negative thoughts used to dominate my mind. I knew I had everything in my toolkit to get unstuck and move forward. Still, for whatever reason, I couldn’t do it. I felt frozen.
I would often seek the opinions and approvals of others on important matters because I couldn’t get still to try and find answers within myself. I didn’t trust myself. Until one day.
One day I finally understood the root cause of my fear of change and started working on getting out of that state of mind. When we feel stuck, we need to slow down and learn to trust that things will change and get better eventually. You will move forward in life. Gain control over your experience so that you can live the life you’re meant for.
One of the reasons we feel stuck in life is that we tend to focus too much on the past. But does thinking incessantly about the past change anything in it? No. On the other hand, the good news is that we have the power to change our present moment, and that’s where our focus should be!
I get it, we tend to dip into the previous chapters of our lives once in a while, and it could be an absolute joy, of course, and is harmless, as long as you remember that that version of you then is in no way better or worse than the one you are now.
We all had moments that affected us in life in one way or another. We all made mistakes and lived through experiences we wish we hadn’t. Those memories will always live in our minds, but what’s important is how much we let them affect our day-to-day lives. Do we let those intrusive thoughts and stories from the past define our present? Or CAN we see them for what they are: moments. Moments in time that had some directional purpose then moved and morphed into a new moment. You can reflect on the lessons learned and wisdom earned from past experiences.
Next time the feeling or a memory of the past creeps in, try to shortcut straight to the silver lining of a lesson you’ve learned from it.
4. Let Go of The Thoughts that Don’t Make You Strong
Where are you in your life right now?
Where do you want to go?
Are you making progress? It doesn’t have to be a massive action, just tiny improvements each day so that a year from now, you look back and realize how much your life has changed—picking one helpful thought over another daily, building yourself up. Keep letting go of the thoughts and beliefs that don’t make you strong.