The idea for this post came about from an Evernote file I wrote to put in my Rainy Day File. Every once in a while, I go through a phase of feeling completely stuck in one way or another. It could any number of reasons from a project that has me completely stumped or a goal that I cannot seem to get to. Regardless of the reason, the feeling of being stuck is the same. Here are some ways I have learned to get past that feeling and break through:
1. Go outside and get moving!
There is nothing like the outdoors to get the creativity flowing again. The combination of the fresh air and getting my body moving clears the cobwebs out of my brain and before I know it, that stuck feeling is a distant memory. Even standing outside on my porch and stretching for a few minutes in the middle of a marathon coding session can make a world of difference in my outlook! What is your favorite outdoor spot?
2. Start something
One of the quickest ways for me to get unstuck is to start something new. There is always a fresh flow of creativity when I start something new that I am excited about and that energy usually doesn’t stop at the new project. If you are feeling the pull to learn how to bake (or sew, or draw, or play a new sport), follow that energy and watch it expand!
3. Finish something
Sometimes the reason that I feel stuck is because I have too much on my plate and the overwhelm is stifling me. When I start to feel this way, I take stock of the state of every project I have going and pick one to finish that day. This may seem completely unattainable, but finishing doesn’t have to mean that the project is at its end. Usually it means that I finish one stage of the project and are ready to start a new one. What do you have on your list that you could finish today?
4. Play hooky
There are times when the only thing you can do is walk away from the thing that is making you feel stuck. I frequently have to give myself permission to play hooky for a bit and not do things that I “should” do (like writing a new blog post or answering one more “urgent” email). As the saying goes, “You can have it all, but you can’t do it all”. Find one thing that you can drop from your to-do list today and drop it, guilt free!
5. Copy someone
Sometimes the best way to get unstuck in my own projects is to copy someone else’s. Now I am definitely not saying to steal someone else’s idea and call it your own, but when I look at ways that other people have attacked the same thing that is making me feel stuck, I almost always come up with a new angle in my own problem that I had not seen before. I also feel much less alone when I see that others have gone through the same frustrations that I am now.
Bonus: Help someone copy you
Is there an area of your business or life that you have had a breakthrough in? Share the process and the wisdom you gained from it!
When you are feeling stuck, what is your favorite way to get past it? Let me know in the comments! I would love some fresh inspiration to put in my Rainy Day File 🙂
I know what you mean by ‘copy someone’. Sometimes, when I’m stuck while trying to write, I’ll copy the format of another post or example I see. Usually even just a few minutes of this is enough to get me back into a writing groove so I can go back and make it all my own again. And if that still doesn’t help me get unstuck, then I usually jump to playing hooky for a bit!
I completely agree with going outside AND I love the feeling of checking something off my To Do list.
Thanks so much for sharing!
This is a great list!! Going outside (or even to the gym…anywhere away from the computer and my phone) always gives me a clearer head! Sometimes for me, it’s just as simple as getting out a piece of paper and jotting things down by hand to get the flow back. And of course there are always the days when playing hooky is the only way to go (sometimes Netflix is good for the soul) 🙂
I have found as I’ve gotten older that I have to really take much smaller chunks of the bigger things at one time and feel like I can then celebrate finishing each piece. It makes me feel less overwhelmed and, of course, a lot less crazy! Thanks for sharing via Blogging On Your Own Terms and looking forward to following our journeys together 🙂