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Loving Yourself: Getting Unstuck

Monday, June 03, 2013

Have you recently experienced one of those moments in life when you feel like you are stuck in the mud? Your boots are mired deeply in the muck with little chance of moving forward or backwards. It truly is a moment that could make you decide to give up.

We often get “stuck in the muck” when we stop listening to ourselves, most especially our spirit. Our inner self that constantly strives to maintain a sense of balance becomes misguided and unfocused. As a result the feelings that include joy, fun, and excitement are generally left behind as you’re moving normally through your days living a responsible and busy life.

As we try to become more than we have been, or presently are, we feel the constant pressure to perform and succeed in our goals. We find ourselves listening to self-talk that begins with “I have to”, and “I should”. This is our first clue to being “stuck in the muck”. It is showing us that we are not where we wish to be, and where we are feeling “obligated” to direct our focus and our energy.

We all know when we’re stuck. It’s a feeling within us, a feeling of discontent, or stressful. It feels stagnant, immobilizing, and often oppressive. We easily deviate from our objective, balanced thinking and we begin to over analyze the situation. It often feels uncomfortable, and can lead to overwhelming feelings of frustration, anger, or even resignation. Most of the time we will wait for something to happen instead of embracing the change that needs to happen within ourselves to regain our balance.

Being stuck is often a symptom. It is a symptom that your life is about to change, or that a change is needed. It most definitely serves a purpose. It is the very seed for transformation to occur. What’s really being asked of you, and is necessary, is an internal change - a change of priorities, a change of perspective, or change in something you do. What can you do to get out of the muck and mire and back into the flow of life?

Here are some ways to get yourself out of the muck:

1. Don’t Get Stuck on Being Stuck:

Where your focus and attention goes, your energy goes. When you’re stuck, notice where your focus is. If you keep thinking “I’m stuck. I can’t lose this weight, it’s horrible”, then that is the reality you’re creating in your mind. Stop and listen to what are you telling yourself about being stuck. Are your thoughts and beliefs reinforcing your stuck-ness? What would it be like to shift your focus and tell yourself something different? What would you say to a friend who is feeling stuck?

2. Change It Up:

Inner change naturally creates outer change. Do you take the same route to work everyday? Do you eat the same foods and shop at the same stores? Add some spice to your life and try some new recipes, and new foods. Rearrange your furniture. Walk or run a different route. Change your exercise routine. Change the way you move through your days and your life. Be present to what’s around you, and embrace and appreciate new experiences for they offer new opportunities.

3. Change Your Relationship to the Stuck-ness:

Do you resist being stuck? Does it make you frustrated and angry? This can certainly keep you stuck; the judgment you feel towards being stuck. What if you changed your association to the feeling of being stuck in the muck? Instead of making it “wrong or bad” to be stuck, allow yourself be “fully present” to the feeling of being stuck; stop being so hard on yourself. Do things to help you relax, see what happens, and let go of your resistance, and you will find that will naturally move you back into the flow again.

4. Don’t Let The Past Dictate The Present:

Are you stuck in the past? What are some of the things you’re telling yourself about what you can and cannot do? What limiting beliefs do you keep reinforcing that are based on what’s happened in the past? Remember that this moment is not bound by any other moment. What you’ve done in the past does not dictate what you can do now, nor in the future. Experiment and see what helps you let go and release your past limitations so that you are fully present to create a new “here and now”.

5. Try Some New Things:

Sometimes we try new things because in our mind it “makes sense.” There’s a feeling that you “should be doing it and enjoying it.” Instead of thinking about what you should be doing to create a new life, let yourself try something completely new. Try something that excites you, however big or small that thing may be. What truly interests you? When was the last time you did something fun? The key is to “allow” yourself experience it. Simply allowing yourself to have new experiences will move you out of the muck.

6. Move & Play: Being immersed in movement and playing really gets the flow of energy moving in your body and your life. Try a new way of moving; dancing, Tai chi, yoga, or a new sport. Go see a funny movie or play. Paint. Play Twister, bocce, a game of catch with your kids, or badminton. Whatever it is let yourself be free without restriction. What are fun things that you like to do that you don’t usually make time for? Simply giving yourself time to play and unwind can make all the difference in the world. It can be the kingpin that opens the floodgates for new energy to flow into your life.

Instead of taking being stuck - you can lighten up. Relax, take a walk, or talk to a friend. Choose to spend time with people who are energetic, positive, and in the flow of life. Being in their presence will breathe new inspiration into your own life. Watch children at play. Join a group, or find friends whose sole focus is to have fun. Notice the way they perceive and relate to life. You can’t help but let some of it rub off on you. Remember that your life change begins within you. Don’t wait for your external world to get unstuck. Getting unstuck starts from the inside. Changing your own actions and behaviors will you move out of the muck of your proverbial rut of routine and monotony, and onto firmer ground.

“The lotus flower grows from deep within the mud yet continues to grow through the water towards the sun."

Be creative in the way you perceive your stuck-ness. It is completely natural to become stuck at some points in our life so that we can truly grow. Imagine two rivers that are flowing and toward the ocean. Many times the rivers may shrink and become narrow, or appear almost still before breaking through to the bigger body of water. This often happens to us when we’re ready to make a life change. The flow contracts before it expands – as life does. The contraction serves a purpose.

So remember to let yourself be in the “stuck in the muck” without resisting. It is time for your internal alchemy to work its magic. Relax and watch what happens.


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