How to Get Unstuck: Change Your Perspective, Choose a New Path
Lately I’ve been feeling stuck. Like I can’t get out of neutral. Everything is flowing past me on the river of life and I’ll never catch up and I’m feeling super anxious about it.
I’ve been walking around like Eeyore for a few days asking myself “What am I going to do, what am I going to do??”
Then I went walking with my friend Lisa and she had a great suggestion — as she usually does because she’s a frigging mensch—that I change my perspective.
Essentially, I’m feeling stuck, she said, because I am comfortable being stuck. I am the only one standing in the way of me being unstuck.
Stop ruminating on your issues, she said. She challenged me to get out of my head and just start doing something… anything. Make a decision and work toward it.
I am used to talking through big life questions with my now ex husband, but that doesn’t mean it’s the only way to work through those questions. I have tools I didn’t have before like journaling, meditating, therapy and, of course friends, to help me work through my issues.
Yet, that afternoon, I stayed in the stuck, thinking anything else is just too hard and fearing life outside of my rut.
And then I remembered another conversation I had with another friend, another mensch, Adrianna. At one point months ago she led me through an exercise about why I was doing the things I was doing. My ultimate answer was that I needed to earn money to take care of my family, and that I needed to develop a strong relationship and be there for my daughters.
Wrong, she said.
I don’t need to do any of that. It’s the path I’ve chosen, she said. These things I am doing aren’t burdens placed upon me, they are obligations I’ve chosen.
I could literally just walk away at any time.
At the time, her telling me these things lifted a weight I had been carrying around — a low level resentment because I thought I had no control over my life.
But, she helped me realize that was bullshit. My life isn’t a series of burdens placed upon me by anyone or any institution They were my choices. I may have chosen poorly, but they were my decisions.
And just as I have chosen my path up to now, I can chose another path. And I can choose to be unstuck.
So I did a few hard things and made some decisions. Things didn’t instantly resolve. I’m still feeling anxious and a little worried.
But like jumping off from the high dive, with knots in my stomach for not knowing how I will land, I am choosing to jump back in. Not necessarily to catch up to the things I have missed by sitting on the river banks — but to not miss out on what’s to come.