20 Feb 2020

Career Development

Are you stuck?

Written by Chrissie Stanley

Many of my coaching clients feel stuck when they come to me

Some of them know what they want to achieve, but can’t see how to get there. While others simply aren’t happy where they are in life right now, but can’t see a way they can make a change.

Have you ever felt this way? Maybe, you do right now.

Why do we sometimes feel stuck?

Most people will go through a point in their life where they feel stuck. And, many will go through more than one! But, regardless of whether you have a new situation in your sights or you simply want out of your current one, you’re never as stuck as you think you are.

There will normally be a series of statements that you tell yourself (and others!) about why you are stuck. However, these are often merely excuses and the real reason is hidden from the conscious mind.

For example, consciously you may tell yourself that you can’t go for a promotion as the hours won’t work for you, but deep-down it could be that you don’t feel worthy of putting yourself forward. Or, perhaps you feel that there isn’t any time for you to achieve anything with everything you have to do on a day-to-day basis, but in reality, you’re overwhelmed by having to decide which is the best option available to you.

How can we become unstuck?

The first thing you need to do to stop feeling stuck, regardless of why you feel that way, is to step back and view things with a wider, objective perspective. When you are consumed by the throes of life, it’s hard to see things clearly.

Taking the time to remove yourself from your daily activities so you can stop and evaluate your situation – and figure out the options available to you – is crucial. This can feel uncomfortable if you’re constantly busy but, without dedicating this time to yourself, nothing will change.

I’ve previously written about conducting a personal SWOT analysis on yourself, which you can find out how to do here. This is a great way to formulate a way forward when you are stuck, as it gets you thinking about not only what you are good at, but also what opportunities are available to you and the things that may be holding you back. For some people doing this simple exercise is enough to help them realise the path that they need to take.

If you find it difficult to look objectively at yourself, it may be helpful to use a profiling tool to help you discover more about yourself. I use the C-Me behavioural analysis tool with my clients. It’s incredibly effective at getting to the reason behind why we do what we do because, instead of looking at your personality, it analyses your preferred behaviours. This enables you to understand and change your habits and comfort zones.

Of course, doing an analysis – whether you choose to do a SWOT analysis or opt for a profiling tool, such as C-Me – is only the first step in getting out of your rut. You then have to formulate an action plan. And, execute it.

The problem is we’ve almost come full circle. It’s easy to get to this point and become stuck again. Without support and accountability that sense of direction can fade away and you are back at square one. You can ask your friends and family to provide the necessary support to help you reach your goals, but they are often too close to you and aren’t able to be objective (or are simply too opinionated to help you achieve your goals!)

This is where working with a coach, like me, comes into its own. It means you will have someone who is completely objective; someone who is an expert listener; someone who has the skills, knowledge and resources to help guide you and set you back on track if you need it.

If you’d like to find out more about how I could help you navigate the fog and inertia of being stuck, get in touch.