To Get Unstuck, Ask New Questions
Updated: Jun 13, 2019
Here's what being stuck sounds like:.
"I feel like I have golden handcuffs."
"Like I'm in a cell and I won't get out."
"I feel adrift, uncertain, unclear."
"I don't know what else is possible."
"I'm afraid of failing, of starting over, of putting myself in uncomfortable situations."
"I'm afraid of not being able to provide for my family if I make a change"
"I'm afraid of not having a plan."
"I'm afraid of not having control."
"I'm afraid of regretting my choice."
Fear is a natural and necessary part of our brain's evolution. It's our survival mechanism.
But the downside of fear is it narrows our focus exclusively to survival. Fear limits our ability to see possibilities or think critically.
If we want to come up with ideas of what's desired AND possible in our career, we have to challenge our fear.
Some questions that challenge fear are:
-What are the costs to me of remaining unhappy?
-How will I feel if 5 years from now I haven't explored any alternatives?
-What would my life look like if things were ideal?
-If I could wave a magic wand in my career, what would I like to have happen?
You don't have to do anything drastic with the answers.
A manifestation of fear is catastrophic thinking...for example, thinking your only option is quitting your job, and having a career where you make no money. In reality, we all want to grow when the time is right, and it makes sense for us.
The first step of getting unstuck is summoning a willingness to confront your fears, and taking small actions toward that. It is as simple as asking questions, talking with people you trust, reading and researching, and opening yourself up to new ways of thinking about your career.
If you don't start asking new questions don't expect new answers.