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  • Writer's pictureSusan Voyles

When You’re Stuck, Life Coaching Can Help You Get Unstuck

Updated: May 24

Being stuck in the mud or deep snow in a vehicle can be both a frustrating and scary experience, leaving us even wondering if we’ll ever be able to “get out of it.”

Whether it’s mud or snow, being “stuck” often points to a key fact – we can’t go forward, and just as likely, we can’t go backwards.

When it comes to our car being stuck, the solution is often what’s called “rocking” or going a little bit forward, then a bit back, then forward again. And on it goes until some momentum is reached and the car is able to overcome the rut, or snow or mud.

Feeling stuck in one’s life can be just as difficult, just as scary, and perhaps beyond our ability to just “rock” our way out of it. Still, recognizing this feeling of being stuck is often a crucial step for personal growth and development, and more important, a way forward.

Like other life guides, coaches can play a key role in helping someone face the idea of being stuck, understanding the reasons why, and developing possible solutions to break out of the pattern, the habit, the rut or other things that have us feeling stuck.

Signs That You’re Stuck

Before we look at solutions it is often important to begin by looking at the problem. Like a good doctor, or even an auto mechanic, figuring out what the dilemma or problem is may not always be obvious and instead require patient review, deep diagnostics, and an understanding of the potential issues at hand.

Here are some common notions about being stuck. First, there is a feeling of stagnation, of not getting anywhere, or noticing a lack of progress in personal or professional life.

Sometimes you might feel you take a step forward in something, but then fall back two.

Another sign is more emotional. It’s a persistent, nagging feeling of dissatisfaction, frustration, or boredom. This can be troubling because it can also cause depression and an attitude of despair.

On top of that, being stuck also makes it difficult to make decisions; for example, it may become harder to see a solution when trying to think or work your way out of the situation (remember the idea of rocking a car to get out of snow or mud).

A feeling of indecisiveness about the future can create a sense of being trapped or unable to move forward. Again, I know when I am stuck in the snow I can get terribly anxious if I don’t think I’ll get out.

Common Causes of Feeling Stuck

There are many causes of feeling stuck but here are a few of the most significant:

  • Fear of failure – if I try and fail I may feel ashamed, lost, unsuccessful, even angry.

  • ·Fear of the unknown – change can be hard, and the unknown is something I don’t understand.

  • ·Lack of clarity about personal goals or values – maybe I have too many ideas, too many goals, too many things I want to get done when all that is needed is just one.

  • ·Too many responsibilities or commitments – leads to being overwhelmed.

  • · Lots of negative self-talk and beliefs that limit my potential.

The Role of Life Coaching

Life coaches can make a difference, yet you’ll need to understand that coaches encourage and guide, help reinforce approaches and aid you in discovering tactics, but coaches cannot do the work of getting unstuck.

Coaches focus mainly on going forward to get unstuck. Sure, there may be things in your past that contribute to where you are today. The idea of looking back to go forward is important and some issues may need to be looked at through counseling before moving ahead.

Coaches help you gain clarity about today and look ahead to tomorrow. We help you set goals and develop ways to take action.

How Life Coaching Can Help You Get Unstuck

Let me be more specific here. Coaching is designed to offer a supportive and non-judgmental space to explore your thoughts and feelings. It can help you identify and challenge limiting beliefs you may be holding on to and even negative thought patterns.

Coaching is a collaborative effort to set achievable goals and create an action plan to move forward (get unstuck). It’s also about offering accountability and ongoing encouragement to stay motivated and focused.

Real-Life Success Stories

One of my clients once told me that I especially helped her tackle obstacles in her path and navigate personal challenges as she planned for a much-anticipated wedding.

Our sessions together were about more than just about setting goals; we focused on a strategy that would work, tools to help implement that strategy and resources to use when specific problems arose.

Ultimately, we all can use a little bit of help sometimes when we’re stuck. Recently my husband had a terrible evening being stuck in icy mud. He tried many techniques alone, none worked. He enlisted the help of another man, they couldn’t do it. Finally, a third person showed up and the team was able to get my husband unstuck.

I don’t think he saw those guys as coaches, but they were there to encourage him, to help him develop a plan to get unstuck and take action to move forward.

A coach can support your effort to get unstuck. I encourage you to seek support from a life coach if you feel stuck in any area of life. Contact me for a complimentary coaching session if you’d like to get started.



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