THE_BLOG

Three Ways to Get Out of a Rut

Whether you work with a coach or not, getting out of a rut is hard work and at the end of the day we're all responsible for our own advancement. So here are some ways to help you get out of a rut:
This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.

Have you hit a plateau in life? Do you feel like you're going through a phase that lacks significant progress? Have your passionate pursuits somehow faded to mundane routine?

Some people refer to this as being "stuck in a rut." I just call it stuck. And once identified, sometimes it's a mystery how to get unstuck. You're lackluster outlook might have you encountering a sense of "blah" -- not happy or depressed -- just not content and craving something different. You might also feel exhausted, off-track, unmotivated or worried. All of those are normal experiences that you may not give much thought to when you're at your best, but every once in a while these unwelcome little obstacles catch up and it's a struggle to move forward.

My number one job as a life coach is supporting people as they move forward, primarily because they're stuck -- stuck in jobs, relationships, health and more. During my clients' one-hour sessions I'm able to work with them to find motivation, strategies and clearer goals; however, when the session is up, it's all on them to sustain their inspiration. Whether you work with a coach or not, getting out of a rut is hard work and at the end of the day we're all responsible for our own advancement.

So here are some ways to help you get out of a rut:

Face your fears. What exactly is stopping you from moving forward? Do you have a fear of failing? Or on the contrary, do you have a fear of success and greater responsibility? Are you avoiding dealing with a specific task? Do you not know how to do something? Are you overwhelmed? These are just some of the questions to ponder. It might not be any of these but they are some common roadblocks. Not all of these are fears, but the issue might be that you need to confront something you're not acknowledging. Remember - change is painful and growth is uncomfortable. That is a major reason why many people stay in one place or procrastinate on tackling those hurdles. So, what is it that's making you stumble? Recognize it (you probably already know what it is), and you will be able to resolve it.

Define your goals. I run a vision board workshop at the change of every season because one vision board per lifetime (or year, even) is never enough. You don't need to do a vision board to get yourself out of a rut, but understand the idea behind it. A vision board is a tangible method of seeing, feeling and manifesting what you aim for. If you're truly working toward your objectives then the vision board eventually becomes outdated, or stuck. A similar situation can happen in life too. As you move forward in life, goals are reached or desires evolve. Having a sense of being stuck can sometimes be an opportunity to reassess where you are in life, what you want, and change track or strategies. Once your objectives are clear again, you will be able to design a path and progress.

Set a reward for breakthroughs. Determine short-term milestones and rewards. What are your turning points? How will you know that you broke through a significant barrier? How will you feel when you achieved something you really wanted? Imagine that feeling now and let that inspire you. See it, believe it, achieve it- right?! The feeling of success is usually enough of a reward, but if you want some extra incentive then go for it. You set the rules on your course. I recommend finding rewards from within, such as the gratifying feeling of triumph; however, of course you can honor your hard work with a material prize or experience!