We’ve all felt stuck before. Stuck in this job I come to everyday. Stuck in this relationship. Stuck in this house, living in this city, this country, on this planet.. you get the picture.
But we’re told that everything is in a constant state of flux, always moving, always changing. So how come I feel just as stuck now as I did last year, 5 years ago and even 15 years ago?
Why aren’t things changing for me?
I hear this a lot in my coaching practice.
Not always about life circumstances either. Sometimes it’s about physical symptoms.
Why do I have this symptom, why does it keep coming back or I’ve had it for years and it just won’t go away. I’ve tried everything but it just doesn’t change.
1. Understand why we feel stuck
So what’s up here? I explain it in this way… from something I learnt while being mentored by a guy from the UK called Richard Moat who was here in New Zealand for a time.
4. Unwanted physical symptoms/life circumstances
3. Disempowering behaviours
2. Limiting thoughts
1. Unresolved negative emotions
We see 4 all the time in life, it’s on the surface, and we try and manage physical symptoms with medicines or manage circumstances by changing job, moving city, finding a new partner. But if we go deeper 4 is actually the result of 1, 2 and 3. And if 1 isn’t addressed then 4 will continue being the same.
Unresolved negative emotions like anger, hurt, guilt, frustration keep us stuck in the same pattern of thinking small, which gives us the same pattern of behaviors that disempower us and then deliver us the same results week after week, year after year, decade after decade.
2. Change the blueprint
We simply keep creating our reality (yes even our ‘stuckness’ – it is a word), using the blueprint we’ve always used and which we’ve usually inherited or learnt from those around us.
How we think and feel each day, how we respond to situations in life, and even the physical symptoms and life circumstances we experience now are printouts of the blueprints.
Let’s use the body as a metaphor for life. Your body is completely renewed at least every 7 years. That’s everything. Every cell has been replaced within 7 years. Your body is in constant flux meaning that cells are CONTINUALLY dying, being removed and new ones created in their place…. And they’re created according to the blueprint you have in place.
The same thing is happening in life. Everything is in a constant state of flux, always moving, always aligning, always forming around the blueprint you’re providing it. Life is happening FOR you, not to you. Life is waiting for you to TAKE ACTION otherwise you will continue to be ACTED UPON.
3. Take action to resolve negative emotion
As soon as you TAKE ACTION, things change.
How? Change the blueprint. Where to start? Resolve negative emotion.
Unresolved negative emotions are like the glue that holds everything together.. the unwanted stuff that is.. the stuckness, the less than and limiting thoughts like ‘I’m not good enough’ and ‘I could never do that’ or ‘I never passed that at school’..
They also hold in place your disempowering behaviours, and we continue to act in ways which reflect who we believe we are. ‘I’m not good enough’ to be an entrepreneur and be paid to do something I enjoy and so you continue to work in the 9-5, which you don’t enjoy nor get any satisfaction or fulfillment from other than an amount of money which allows you to subsist for another week til next paycheck (which isn’t that satisfying at all after a couple of years).
As we accept, acknowledge and resolve negative emotions, we learn the message they were intended to give us, (the glue is dissolved) and we can create NEW blueprints, new and better thoughts, new and more empowering behaviours, new environments to support and sustain our new behaviours. We begin to experience a different set of life circumstances and even physical symptoms (see note below).
4. Express what you truly feel WHEN you feel it and seek for the message
If nothing changes, nothing changes.
What to do now?
Start writing a journal and speaking out what you truly feel when you feel it.
Start expressing what you feel in this way. “I feel …”. Don’t keep telling people the story or set of circumstances that resulted in your feeling this way and don’t get caught up in the blame game – get straight to the root, the feeling.
Accept it, acknowledge it and express it with meaning. Speak it out so you can hear yourself say it – so it registers in your bodymind. I feel afraid. I feel sad. I feel angry. I feel frustrated. Really tune into the feeling of the situation when you’re expressing what you feel.
Then write it out and notice what you feel. Write down what you feel, and where you feel it. Then write down each day what you notice is different over the next week. Listen to what your body is trying to tell you. Seek for the message these circumstances or symptoms are trying to deliver to you.
Wiremu Matthews is husband to an awesome wife and dad to 5 great kids. Spends most of his time as an integrative health and leadership coach. His experience spans from western medicine (pharmacist once upon a time), to personal trainer, to business owner, to emotional intelligence leadership coach specializing in psychoneuroimmunology.