Why Being STUCK Doesn't Have To SUCK
Have you ever been stuck? You know you have a goal you want to reach and you can’t seem to move a muscle toward that dream! Maybe it’s a career goal, weight loss or something else on your list. You have tried things but nothing seems to work. And so then you start to lose hope, fall into a malaise and before you know it you are stuck in the mud. And we HATE to admit that we are stuck. After all, who wants to listen to the complaints, right? Even you can’t stand your own mind-chatter-whining!
But, consider this: what if being stuck is necessary? What if being stuck isn’t a bad thing, but a part of a process that can’t be sidestepped? What if being stuck can actually be soul serving and nurturing instead of torturous and lonely?
I’ve been stuck. In fact, this summer, I was going through some stuck-ness. And truth be told, it did suck for a while, until I decided to take my own advice and tap. I tapped in the morning when I got up and I tapped at night before I went to bed. The tapping helped me to think more clearly and release the tightness and judgment I had about being stuck. Once that dissipated, my mind opened up to possibilities. The possibility that maybe feeling this way was an invitation to explore something that was holding me back. Here are the realizations that using EFT tapping on my stuck-ness helped me conclude:
1. Even Though I’m Stuck, I’m Totally O.K. (great set-up statement for your tapping by the way). Think about that a minute. We are ingrained as a society to multi-task and keep moving and go, go, go. So the feeling like you can’t get momentum on a specific project, goal or even your business can be daunting. It’s helpful to separate the who of who you are with the current state of stuck-ness. You are stuck, but you are still o.k.; you’re not weird, you’re not wrong and for heaven’s sake you are good enough!
2. It’s Just Not Time Yet. I don’t remember where I heard it but someone said imagine a rose. Each day the petals slowly open – in stages. And you don’t stand there and yell at it to hurry up and open fully. It’s the same with us. We bloom. We birth. Everything in its own time.
3. A Pity Party is Still a Party. Yeah, I went there. Sometimes it just feels good to sulk, feel sorry for yourself, cry and wallow. It’s an important release for when things aren’t going exactly how you would like. The key – and here’s the key just like when you are an invited guest at a party – don’t stay late and be the last one to leave.
4. It’s O.K. to Be Nice (to yourself). Sometime when you are stuck and feeling badly about a situation, you tend to fall off the wagon in good commitments to yourself; the healthy eating goes out the window, you skip the gym, maybe have one or two more glasses of wine than you should, the gratitude list is nowhere to be found. This only adds to the state, so remember to be kind to yourself. Maybe take a nice long bath, listen to your favorite music or go for a walk in nature. Whatever it is, just give yourself a break!
5. Stop Fighting. What we resist persists, so don’t push up again the stuck-ness with a bunch of self-doubt, anger and judgment. Feel it and let it go. Tapping is especially great to use for this.
Here is an EFT tapping script to help when you are stuck:
IE: I hate being stuck
OE: It feels so hopeless
UE: I just want something to change
UN: Then I won’t be stuck and I’ll feel better
CP: Look at everyone else around me
CB: They are moving along nicely with their goals
UA: And here I am stuck in the mud
TH: Everyone else is going to get ahead and I’ll be right here
OE: I just don’t see anything changing soon
UE: That sucks
UN: I know people say things can change in a moment’s notice
CP: But not for me
CB: I’m just not lucky that way
UA: I’m going to be stuck forever
TH: That’s just how it is
IE: I wonder if it is possible to be different
OE: Maybe I need to be here right now
UE: I’m open to considering that
UN: What if I could nurture myself right now?
CP: Maybe that would help me get unstuck
CB: What if I could say “I love being stuck”!
UA: And try to mean it!
TH: What would be possible for me?
IE: I guess I could try it
OE: Maybe just for a little bit
UE: Because sometimes being stuck actually feels good
UN: Being stuck doesn’t feel good
CP: Being stuck feels good
CB: Being stuck doesn’t feel good
UA: What if I could love being stuck?
TH: What would be possible then?
IE: I don’t want to love it because I don’t want to STAY STUCK.
OE: o.k. so maybe I can tolerate it
UE: I can tolerate being stuck and be open
UN: Be open that things will change at the perfect moment
CP: Be open that I can create the change when I feel ready
CB: I can learn to accept and release
UA: I accept being stuck and I release it
TH: I am releasing being stuck
Support hose... you know what I’m talking about, right? They are flesh-colored and typically worn because of circulation issues.
Yeah, well, they are ugly as all, that but the support is reliable and foolproof! (You just pray that you never need them.)
Well, on a rare moment when I had nothing to do, I started Google-ing my favorite topic: working moms. It’s sort of like putting your ear on the railroad track; you can hear the rumbling from miles away. I was not surprised by the number of articles that echoed the same message: working moms need more support. One of the articles I read suggested that working moms need a wife! And I’ll have to admit that at times, this suggestion can seem like an appealing option.
The support that seems to be needed comes in three distinct categories:
That, by the way, is never a good idea. I realize just how antiquated this sounds, but when you consider that “women’s liberation” was only a mere 35 years ago (give or take), it is totally understandable that real examples of how to balance home and work are not easy to come by.
But don’t lose hope! Here are some easy steps you can take to get the support you need right now:
Adjust. Purge. Adjust again. You may, for a short period of time, want to adjust your view of what a clean and organized house looks like. Schedules are complicated, and you may not be able to give the amount of detail as you once did (before family, business trips, etc.) It’s not defeat; it’s reality.
This leads to the next step: the purge. Do you really need everything you have? Stuff creates clutter, and clutter is an energy vampire.
It sucks your time, your psyche, and your overall outlook. After you’ve done the purge, adjust again. Set a schedule for cleaning, and enlist the “all hands on deck” motto – never too early to get the kids enlisted – and then test it out for a week or two and see how it’s going. You can always rinse and repeat the process!
Uncomplicate! I know the routine all too well! After work, you get slammed with practices, games, dance lessons. Here, too, you need to adjust. In my neighborhood there is an unspoken expectation that the more activities you have your kids enrolled in, the better parent you are. This shocked me when I moved out to the 'burbs! I was just unwilling to have dinner – aka fast food – in the car between activities when I was aching to get home, have some down time and enjoy just “being” with my kids.
Adjust, choose. It’s up to you. I know at times the squeeze is unavoidable. If you can, double up with another parent, barter or pay someone to do the driving around. I know I felt bad that the stay-at-home mom would get stuck carting my kid around because I wasn’t home from work in time, but then I would treat her to her favorite latte, magazines or a night out when I’d watch her kids.
Don’t suffer in silence. Seek out the support you need!
Play the game. There are some great companies out there who have very flexible work schedules, back-up day care, job sharing, telecommuting, and a host of other options to help you be your best at work. If your company is not up to this speed yet, I understand the challenges you may face. When I’d have to leave early because my child was sick, if it happened more than two times in one month, I would say the appointment was for me. I didn’t want to be looked down upon because I had kids who needed me. I did not feel like I was being authentic, but I knew because of the environment I was in, that I was doing what was best for everyone. And you do too.
Don’t be too hard on yourself if you need to make certain decisions – within reason of course – to help you manage the rigors of your work life and family life.
Ever work on a puzzle? I haven't in years! The degree of difficulty of my last puzzle was likely an oversized floor puzzle my son had when he was three years old! Piece of cake. In general, I tend to find puzzles frustrating because it just seems to take a long time to complete, and I get overwhelmed by all the pieces. After I look at the picture on the box, I definitely have a distinct approach in how I will tackle the puzzle:
I realized I can apply the same process to things I want to accomplish. So when I begin to get overwhelmed by my business, and all I need to do, or if I keep procrastinating on a project, I take my puzzle approach to ease the frustration and get unstuck. Here is what it looks like:
1. Vision: Start with your vision and tap till you feel you are in a good place. (This is like the picture on the puzzle box). Ask yourself:
Be flexible! If you are at step four, and your progress doesn't match your vision, you have a choice:
1. Make adjustments to your vision.
2. Review steps 2 and 3 for changes.
How do you know if you should change your vision or your steps? It's all in the "feelings". The way you got to your vision in the first place is because it felt good! When you look back at your vision, drop down from your head (the thinking part of you) to your heart (the feeling part of you).
I hope this was helpful whether you are playing with puzzles or building your business!
Paula G. Rosario
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Laura West, President & Chief Creative Officer, www.centerforjoyfulbusiness.com