In a job you don't really care about. And forget about having a career. “What's that?”, you say.
You don't want to stay stuck, because really, who does? But… it's not been that easy to get out of your kind of rut. You tried. Didn't work.
Or maybe, you haven't tried. But you thought about it a lot. A LOT. It made your head hurt.
I get it.
The thing with getting unstuck is that we have to introduce change in our lives.
Hmmm. Change. How did that word make you feel?
Saying that word alone evokes all kinds of tingling sensations to most folks. And I’m not talking about the good kind either.
Most people don’t really want change. Even if they say they welcome it. Welcoming change and initiating change = two different things.
In my work, I talk about getting unstuck and change a lot. When I do, people often think about radical changes. Huge, life-changing, boat-rocking changes. Of course, they get scared and the phrase “But I can’t” begins to tumble out of their mouths.
If someone who’s a world-class couch potato told you he’s shooting to run 10 miles next week, of course you’d shake your head. You’d tell him that’s probably not how he should go about it. Slow and easy is the way to go, right?
A lot of people want to approach ‘getting unstuck from the rut’ the same way. They think of rocking the boat. Waves. Big steps. A lot of them get overwhelmed as a result.
If you’re comfortable with taking huge steps, go and rock on my friend. Imagine me with pompoms doing my best cheer dance on the sidelines.
But if you’re not, by all means, take smaller steps.
Firstly, you have to be (here comes the tired cliché) true to yourself. When it comes to bringing in change, you have to respect your comfort level with risk. Otherwise, you'll always feel awkward and unsure of your decisions and actions.
Secondly, getting unstuck doesn’t have to mean radical changes. It doesn't have to mean changing careers and reinventing yourself completely. You don't have to do à la Tom Hanks in Joe Versus The Volcano.
Find one small thing you can do to get unstuck and test it out. Have one conversation with someone who can help you make (or even plan) the change. Take a class to pick up a new skill.
A huge part of getting unstuck is feeling confident–and knowing–that you are taking steps, moving forward and not staying trapped.
Whatever you do, don’t stay stuck because you’re afraid to make huge changes in your career and life right away. You don’t have to.
About The Author: Lou Blaser is an author and teacher. She writes about and advices on career change and reinvention at Second Breaks.