Finding time to listen to yourself gives that extra spark and sparkle to your day. You are just the person to lift yourself out of the doldrums, day or night.
It can be especially important to listen to that calm, wise voice inside when you just can’t seem to budge on an important task. Call it flummoxed, frustrated or bamboozled … when you are engaged in a prized project, or even fulfilling an ornery obligation, getting stuck can sour your whole day!
So what can you do?
Here’s an excellent strategy to help you step beyond stuck: Try asking yourself questions and listening carefully to your answers. Engaging with yourself in this way will get you going again, as it helps your brain transition from old ruts to new routes.
Your goal here is to exercise your mind’s innate flexibility rather than to stay mired in a funk. Many states of mind contribute to feeling stymied, of course. Fear, self-criticism, perfectionism, and resentment can be just a few of the culprits … but fortunately, they tend to share distortions that the right questions can illuminate … and then evaporate.
Here are 2 of my favorite questions:
1) What’s the next TINY step I can take?
Being clear with yourself that this is to be a SMALL step relieves any pressure you might be feeling. When you’re stuck, any step of any size is just fine; what matters is that you mobilize yourself. You may discover that insights eluding you now will pop up once you’re fully engaged.
Chunking projects down to their smallest increments also helps you to assign a realistic time frame. This is an excellent antidote to overwhelm!
2) How would I encourage SOMEONE ELSE to proceed?
You know you give good advice! Why not benefit from some of it yourself? The inner wisdom that you tap for a friend in need is just as likely to help you!
Sometimes, all you need to do is to remove yourself from the equation. Then, the next step seems quite straightforward. Why? You are calling on a neutral, benevolent part of yourself to offer advice.
This is a wonderful conversation to cultivate throughout the rest of your project, particularly if you have been feeling helpless or self-critical! Before you know it, you will be back in the saddle, and moving in the right direction!© Copyright 2010 Paula Eder, Ph.D.