Have you ever found yourself asking “What am I gonna do with my life now?”, “What am I gonna do next?”, “What can bring me happiness?”, or simply “What now?”. These were some of the questions I had in mind just a few hours ago. I felt stuck. This is not a one-time occurrence. I had this feeling of being stuck several times. So I want to let you know that it is normal to experience this. There’s nothing wrong with you.
While thinking about it, you might ask “How do I get out from this feeling of being stuck?” Honestly, the reason why I ended up writing this blog is because I had the same question earlier and I felt like it would be nice to share some insights on how to deal with it.
Before anything else, I do not want you to ask yourself why you’re feeling this way. Asking why will just lead you to keep thinking about it; analyzing different situations or experiences that you think might lead to this; making up reasons why you feel this way. It will become a spiral of never ending thoughts in your head and I don’t want you to end up there.
There are three small, sweet steps that you can do when feeling stuck. I hope this can be helpful to you too.
1. Journaling your thoughts
You might have heard about journaling so many times before, but I guarantee you that it actually helps. The moment I found myself feeling stuck, I hurriedly grabbed a pen and a paper (notebook) to write down the thoughts that I had in my head. I felt better when I did that.
You can also type it in a Notes app on your phone. Normally, I write my journals in an app called Daybook or simply write it on my iPad’s notebook app. But there are moments when writing your thoughts in a physical paper feels a bit better.
Journaling releases that kind of negative energy that’s holding you back or caging you. It’s like you’re dumping everything else that’s in your head. It feels lighter when you let go of heavy thoughts. It helps in clearing your mind.
2. Practice gratitude
It takes a lot of courage to be able to shift your focus on the positive thoughts or more important things when you’re being succumbed by negative thoughts. The easiest thing that you can do at this time is to think of something you’re grateful for. It could be a very small thing that sometimes you ignore or don’t pay so much attention to. You can tell yourself:
I’m grateful for having clean water to drink.
I’m grateful for eating a good lunch/dinner.
I’m grateful for the nice weather today.
I’m grateful for the clean air that I’m inhaling right now.
I’m grateful for having an Internet connection.
I’m grateful for my family and friends.
I’m grateful for the job that I have.
I’m grateful for the nice song I’m listening to.
I’m grateful for simply waking up today.
I’m grateful for seeing a beautiful scenery.
There could be a lot more things that you can be grateful for. You can also tell someone that you appreciate them. Or just say Thank You when someone did something nice to you.
3. Take an action
Doing something can be a bit hard when you’re feeling stuck or if there’s a lot of thoughts that you are thinking about. You’ll find yourself sitting and staring out of nowhere, but you don’t feel like doing anything.
In this step, you have to take any small action that can keep you moving. The goal of this is to keep you present in the physical reality. You don’t have to stay in your head.
The action could be anything like taking a shower, going on a walk, reading a book, drinking water/coffee/tea, petting your dog/cat, cleaning your room or workstation, meditating, exercising, etc. You just need to start doing something and keep your focus or be present on that small activity.
You might think, “It’s easier said than done”. But remember, that thought is just in your head. Feeling stuck is just in your head. And you need to get out of that.
You might have experienced this feeling before and I know that you have what it takes to get through it. You are strong and you have the power to choose whether you will focus your attention on the feeling of being stuck or you will shift your focus to the things that are more important to you. It’s a choice. It’s your choice.