10 Easy Things You Can Do To Improve Your Situation
If you’ve ever felt that nothing seems to be going your way, then you’ll know what it feels like to be stuck.
We all have bad days, but feeling stuck is more of a long-term feeling of frustration, be it in your work, your relationships, or your social life. You feel like you can’t move on, no matter how hard you try. The Life Balance Coach, Victoria Thygesen, makes a living from helping people get unstuck. eumom asks her for her top tips on improving your situation:
1. Be Honest with Yourself
Sitting back, taking stock and acknowledging how you feel is the first step in any situation where you feel stuck, says Victoria. “Often, when we feel stuck, we can go into two different camps; either we keep pushing forward furiously, working harder than ever, keeping busy and not allowing ourselves to stop, or else we become numb, inactive and bogged down.” Having these reactions is fine, initially, if you’re at least aware of it, suggests Victoria. “Admitting that you feel stuck, depressed, sad, upset can be the first step to working out what the next step is. Acknowledging your emotions and allowing yourself to feel what you feel, is very powerful.”
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2. Take a Holiday
Creating some space between you and your situation can be extremely helpful. A few days away in the sun or out the country would be ideal. But if it’s not feasible, even a day trip will help you to review the situation, suggests Victoria.
3. Back to Basics
When you’re feeling stuck, it can be easy to let other areas of your life slide, which leaves you feeling even more depressed and helpless. “Look after yourself by ensuring that you get enough sleep, eat well, get exercise and fresh air. This can help you feel grounded and more in control of your life. It can also help give you the energy needed to break free and get unstuck,” she says.
4. Let it Out
Getting your concerns, your fears and your frustrations off your chest is a huge relief in itself. Either talk to a good friend, or elicit the help of a life coach or counsellor. “Talking about your situation can help you get perspective and see new ideas and possibilities. If talking to someone that you know, make sure that they are not too close to the situation at hand, as it may be hard for them to listen and support you objectively.” Paying a professional to listen can be the best investment you’ll make. There’s none of the guilt when you feel that you’ve ‘dumped’ on a friend, and the main focus will always be on seeking a result for you.
5. Get Some Perspective
It’s easy to spend so much time focusing on your ‘problem’ or frustration that it becomes larger than life in your mind. Getting a little perspective on the situation is important. “This is not to diminish how you feel,” insists Victoria, “but putting it into perspective with other areas in your life or other times in your life, can help you see the bigger picture.”
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6. Step Outside Your Comfort Zone
Ever wanted to do belly dancing, ballet or gymnastics, or climb Mount Kilimanjaro? Whatever it is, just do it! Make that your one focus, and see how your perspective shifts.“Breaking the routine cycle and going outside your comfort zone can help shift your attitude and help you open to new ideas,” encourages Victoria.
7. Count Your Blessings
While Victoria is quick to point out that this isn’t simply a suggestion to ‘think positively’, she believes that looking on the bright side of life and bringing to mind all of the things that you are grateful for, can be very powerful. “It can be small things, such as appreciating a beautiful sunset or a phone call from a friend or laughing out loud. Being aware of the good things, and being grateful for those, helps you get perspective around the situation and can make you feel stronger and more able to do something about the things you don’t like. It is not meant as ‘just be grateful for what you have and get on with it’, but it can give you the strength and courage you need to move forward.”
8 Don’t Run Before you can Walk
“Once you have acknowledged your feelings, your situation and are aware of the good stuff, make sure that this is your starting point for change,” suggests Victoria. “If you jump ahead and, to use a beloved cliché, try to run before you can walk, then you risk sabotaging yourself completely. So build on what you already have and grow from there.”
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9. One Step at a Time
While it’s extremely tempting to want to see a change straight away, like anything that’s worth achieving, it can be hard. “Trying to change everything at once can be overwhelming and daunting. It takes time to get used to new ways and build in new habits, so start with one thing at a time. Make sure your basics are covered and then ask yourself, what one thing can you do to make even a small change to your situation? Start there and then build on it.”
10. Plan Your Journey
This is a wonderfully exciting step. Actually setting down your goals and coming up with the steps of how you’re going to get there gives you focus, something you’ll certainly need on your journey. “Break it down into small, manageable chunks and remember to reward and congratulate yourself on milestones completed. Setbacks can, of course, happen, and the plan may change or get adjusted, but having a plan is a good place to start.” Deciding to take steps to improve your situation can be an empowering, exciting and exhilarating time in your life. Embrace the challenge and enjoy the ride!