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Three Ways to Get Stuck

Here is an easy read for a Friday on what gets you stuck.

In psychology, these three simple areas are used to gain insight into why you are feeling stuck. When you enter the therapist's office, and they start asking random questions, your brain might go, 'What kind of questions are these?' Well, if this makes you wonder, you haven't heard the questions they ask when you go with depressive symptoms... Once I sat next to a therapist observing and wondered where the hell she was going with these questions:-)

The three ways people get stuck are:

  1. When they focus on things they cannot control.

  2. When they focus on things they don't have.

  3. Or when they live in the past or the future.

Do any of these, or why not all together, and see what happens.

Focusing on things you cannot control looks like: "Worrying about being laid off," which becomes paralysing for some. You are not in the room where they decide it, so stop worrying about that. Do your thing; things will happen with or without you worrying. "Worrying about what other people think of you so you don't do what you want." Seriously???? 

Focusing on things you don't have looks like: "If I had that, I could do this, and the reason I am not there is because I don't have that," or "My performance would be better if my manager invested in me," or "I didn't have loving parents; hence, I don't know how to love, and I am single." You may not have those, but you have the opportunity to fix it. But my favourite is: "I am not doing the strategy for my department because I don't have the approval from my boss." That is from a senior leader. Dude, make a move!!!!!!

Living in the past or future looks like "This happened to me, and this is why I am where I am today; I cannot help it." I know somebody who was dumped by a guy 15 years ago. She is still searching for the reasons why and seeking closure. The guy is already married with two kids. 

Then you have those who live in the future. We call them visionary, but vision without execution is just dreaming. Those are the delusional ones dreaming about getting rich, famous, or whatever they dream about but no action behind it.

During my coaching sessions and when talking to employees, I often hear the first two. "I am stressed because my manager is sending me emails at night." OK, have you asked if the manager expects you to reply, or he/she is just sending it simply so as not to forget about it? We often want to stop other people from doing things and overlook what we can do to keep us within our control and move forward.

Imagine life as a PlayStation game; there are levels, and you must find ways to get to the next level. It would be stupid to say, "The reason I cannot pass this level is because of the programmer." You must find the way! If it is not that door, you must keep going and find the door that will let you get to the next level instead of wishing to have the key to the closed door. You don't have the key, so go and find the open door.

PS: My mother was the perfect definition (victim really) of being stuck. Maybe that's the reason I cannot stand people who blame others for their circumstances. There is a way you just have to find it instead of passing blame and responsibility to others. That's the easy way. 

Watch: HR Has Wasted Millions of Dollars

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