At my workshop last week, Dear Future: Getting ready for what's next, I led a group of remarkable, accomplished women through a series of exercises and experiences designed to help them take sure steps into the futures they want.
What I see every time I begin to work with great women like these, is how many similar challenges keep them stuck and frustrated. To the outer world, they look like dynamos. Inside, they often feel:
- Overwhelmed by their day-to-day lives — which makes it nearly impossible to get out of the weeds and see the big picture
- Rudderless — because they lack clarity about what they truly want
- Unsure about how to get moving forward — or how to sustain momentum when they do take first steps
- Plagued by perfectionism — which they recognize inhibits them, but nonetheless they feel powerless to change
Do some of these issues resonate for you?
Do they make you feel stuck, too?
If the answer is “Yes” (to any or all of these challenges, or others that come to mind for you) I have good news.
You are not alone — and you can take these 3 sure steps to get unstuck:
1. Say no to isolation.
When we face a challenge in isolation, we compound the challenge. We circle around alone in the muddle of our mental clutter. Frustration builds and we struggle more.
Some of us (and I was one of those women!), feel we need to figure things out alone. Seeking help makes us feel inadequate, and ashamed about feeling unable to bring enough intelligence and determination to figure things out and solve problems ourselves.
And, because so many accomplished women tend to compare themselves to friends and colleagues, they think that they alone struggle with their challenges. If they could open up to other women, they’d know they are not alone — and they would be exposed to new ideas, strategies, and support.
When we look for opportunities to safely connect to and open up with peers, the benefits are enormous.
2. Look for support
When you’re ready to end isolation, you have some choices. You can seek out ways to connect and get support like this:
- Reach out to a friend who cares deeply about your wellbeing, listens well, has some objectivity about the matter at hand, and is not oriented to telling you what to do or to "fixing" things for you. Not all of us have such a friend to turn to, but if you are fortunate to have that friend, invite her (or him) to spend some quiet time with you to listen to your concerns, and ask you questions that will help you find clarity and answers.
- Attend a workshop that’s focused on the challenge you face. Look for a leader whose message resonates for you and who will attract like-minded participants. Show up with the intention to be open and to learn.
- Consider working with a coach — either in a group coaching program or for one-on-one coaching support. Seek a seasoned coach with a strong track record and effective tools you can learn to use. But most of all, choose someone with whom you feel the right chemistry, trust and eagerness to work with. Seek someone who will lovingly challenge you and call you out when you make excuses; someone who will see more possibilities for you than you may be able to see for yourself; someone who will hold you accountable to the commitments you make.
3. Take a first step — even a small one!
It may sound obvious, but when you are in a place where you’re stuck, you overlook the fact that taking action is required to get unstuck. It will likely feel pretty uncomfortable to take action when you feel uncertain or unclear about what to do. But action is what’s called for, and this is the time to urge yourself to move forward in spite of some discomfort.
Remember that you can begin small! Your first small steps will get you in motion, and momentum can build from there. Here are some great options:
- Make a list of people who you'd feel could be good listeners related to what’s on your mind. Your next step will be to choose one to invite to meet you for coffee and a conversation.
- Think of someone who has moved through a challenge similar to one you are facing, and reach out to ask if they have resources to suggest.
- Check out coaches that colleagues recommend or web searches bring to your attention.
- Download the Roadmap to Clarity, a process I recently developed that will guide you to get clear about a question on your mind. It will also help you to identify and implement small action steps that will bring meaningful change into your life. (Lots of women have used the Roadmap to Clarity and I’ve received tremendous feedback on its impact. And, you can use it many times, to address a range of challenges you want to work through.)
The wonderful news is that when you start taking action — even small action — and make a commitment to continue taking small steps, you will realize that you are no longer stuck! You will be on a path to creating the changes you want in your life. And, as you bring in desired change, you will usher in more joy and satisfaction. Keep moving, and the true experience of Living Big will be yours!
Drop me a note or leave a comment below to let me know what you try, and what works best for you to get unstuck.
And, I am happy to extend an open invitation to you to schedule a complimentary Introductory Coaching Call with me. Simply complete the Coaching Inquiry Form and I’ll be in touch to make a date with you.