Getting Unstuck

There are a lot of reasons why we end up feeling stuck. And one possible reason is experiencing a trauma. Clearly, this is something that we need to address or we’ll live with its effects for the rest of our lives.

But assuming that you’re doing this, and yet you still feel stuck, are there any strategies that can help to move you forwards? Here are some suggestions to experiment with:

1. Start with a time of self-reflection. Some questions to think about, and answer, could include:

– How would I describe my life at the moment?

– What did I expect to be like?

– How am I different – because of what has happened?

– Are there parts of my old self that I wish I could recapture?

– If I could realistically change one aspect of my life, what would it be?

Remember: For now, we aren’t focusing on problem-solving. We’re simply try to create an image of how you would like your life to look like.

2. What do you feel is your purpose in life? Purpose is what drives us; it gets us out of bed. It gives meaning to our life. It inspires and motivates us. But in the aftermath of trauma people lose touch with their purpose. They feel disconnected, like they’re moving in a fog. Some questions to think about, and answer, here might be:

-What did I view as being my purpose in the past – before the traumatic experience or event?

– Does that still resonate with me today?

– Whose life would I like to make a difference in?

– Are there any ways that I could still do that?

3. What would my ideal future look like? Try to think ahead, and take a peek into the future. What might life be like in 5 or 10 years for now. This is your chance to think outside the box, and to try out different options, opportunities and endings. Let your imagination run free for a while … and then try to answer the following questions:

– Is there anything here that inspires or motivates you?  

– 5 or 10 years from now … What could I be doing? Who would I be spending with energy and time with? What would I be proud of? What had made me happy?

– Who would I be if I could be my best self?

4. Try something new and different. Sometimes we don’t know exactly what needs to change, and we simply can’t imagine what a could change could look like. Here are some suggestions to help you with this:

– Maybe thing about saying “yes” an invitation, or some opportunity, that comes across your path. You never know what it might show or teach you.

– Or, change something up in your current routine. Sometimes a small thing has a massive effect, and is able to spark our creative powers again.

– Try reading a new book, or listening to some different podcasts, or going to events you’d never normally consider. Again, that can jostle our creative juices and can be a vehicle to help us get unstuck.

15 thoughts on “Getting Unstuck

  1. After my accident with an 18-wheeler truck, I’ve revisited and revised my ideal future. I thought I needed to adjust it to how I am now because everything physically changed after the accident. Thanks for sharing this! 😊

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  2. What did I expect to be like? Seriously abused kids are in survival mode, expectations are replaced by trying to stay safe at all costs.

    – How am I different – because of what has happened? my brain is wired completely different, I spot and avoid danger, I worry and have a nervous system that is always on alert and revved up

    – Are there parts of my old self that I wish I could recapture? For abused kids there is no time when an old self was normal or felt safe. I do not have a happy-go-lucky experience in my life, I am guarded and avoid. We lack the ability to trust

    – If I could realistically change one aspect of my life, what would it be? Give me different birth parents

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  3. Even people without what most would call a trauma seem to have felt “stuck” after the pandemic. Some have hated to be cooped up in their homes, but they were there so long that they’ve become used to it and have a hard time making themselves go out, even though that’s what they’ve been longing to do. I don’t think a lot of us realized the toll the lockdowns were going to take on mental health, especially with small children, who were supposed to have been learning speech and social skills.
    What I’m getting at is, your questions and suggestions might be a good idea for all of us.

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    • Yes, I agree. The Pandemic has deeply affected many of us in ways we never anticipated, and still aren’t fully aware of. Asking ourselves these questions would indeed be enlightening and helpful. Thanks for adding this!!

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  4. Thank you for this post, it has such helpful info within. I did something different to get “unstuck” I moved over 3000 kms away from the place, and people, that caused so much trauma in my life. Best decision I ever made! I am here now, happier than I have been in years!

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  5. Thanks for sharing this post. When my wife and I returned from caring for my mother for two months, we were both physically, emotionally, and mentally burned out. It took both of us awhile to find ourselves and move our lives forward. Self-reflective moments can be an effective tool.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, those self-reflective moments can be restorative. Even although we love and care for someone deeply, it can be very draining to look after them the way you looked after your mother. Burnout is a real thing! I’m glad you were able to recognized the need to withdraw and build yourself up again. Thanks so much for sharing from your experience 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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