I was talking with my spouse the other day and we were discussing about the topic of people who are like us at midlife. She was saying how she noticed that people today in our age bracket say things like “I am not where I thought I would be by this age. I thought I would have more money, own a bigger home or be free with less dependency on working to cover my living expenses.”
This sparked the idea for this blog.
Often in our lives we get caught up in being busy that we really do not take time to do what it is we truly want. And the more time that passes the less we remember what it is want OR worse know we want but start believing that this dream is harder to realize. I call this being stuck.
It is like a car spinning its wheels in the mud. You are pressing the gas. The engine is revving. The crankshaft is turning providing power. The wheels are turning but the tire has no traction so there is no movement of the vehicle.
Do you find that there are days that swish by and when you look back on it – you ask yourself – what did I do today? This is the result of simply moving your body in a habitual form without being consciously aware what you are doing. Conversely do you remember a day that you were so productive and felt like you had made great strides towards a goal you wanted? This is what makes your magical moments in life. Times when you did something special for your spouse or made a call to someone who then helped you with your project or you decided that now was the time to have what it is you wanted. This is intentional living – consciously deciding and taking action towards what it is you want.
But how do you do that when there are so many other commitments or things to do or worse demands that come up for your time… that must get done?
Before I give you my Top 7 list of activities to get unstuck, I want to share with you this philosophy that I live by and have for a long time.
I need to love me before I can love someone else.
At first glance you may think what has love got to do with getting unstuck. Besides it is pretty selfish, right? Let me share what I mean by this in an analogy you may be familiar with. If you have ever been on an airplane you know that in the case of a change in cabin pressure a mask will fall from the sky and you need to put on your air mask before you help someone else with theirs… do you know why? Because if you can’t breathe how are you going to help someone else?
So when you take care of you, then you will be able to take care of someone else.
Now are you ready to get unstuck?
Remember that the spinning of the wheels is like you living day by day – stuck not going anywhere but working hard. What is important is you first decide that your situation must change. And that comes when you have your emotional state either at a level of feeling desperate or inspired.
Imagine if you learned something new today? That starts with you being present right where you are.
Here are simple exercises and activities you can do to
- Get your own attention.
- Think about what it is you want
- Inspire yourself to make a decision
Meditate – each day take a few minutes to yourself where you close your eyes and just be with you. What you do is – close your eyes. Breathe. And feel your body as it inhales and exhales. Pay attention to your breath. This will calm your mind.
Here are some places you can do that – in your Car in a parking lot. In a Bathroom. In the Bedroom. At the Park. On a Walk in nature.
Write in a journal – Yes write. This is very different than typing. Your brain connects with the hand movement of writing each letter… which is very different from pushing a button on a keyboard. What you do is share your thoughts about what it is you want. You could complain and write all the things you don’t like or want – BUT make it short and sweet… otherwise you will stay in a mode that is not getting you closer to what you want. If you are having trouble – start thinking about what it is you are grateful for. Then write about that abundance in your life. For example – like you don’t have to travel to a specific country to get that piece of fruit you like.
Hire a coach – Become aaccountable to someone – watch what you will do. When you get someone in your life to help you see the value of you, you start seeing yourself differently. You know we do more for others than we do for ourselves, right? A coach will help you by challenging your way of thinking and behaving.
Read a non fiction book – Like a coach – you have someone giving you some insight and guidance to help you with your life. They could inspire you, tell you what to do or just share a new idea you can adopt.
Watch an inspirational movie – Do you want to feel motivated – watch & listen – use 2 of your senses instead of just one. You will be moved by an inspirational story of someone. This will have you feel different – giving you a new frame of thinking to now make decisions for your own life.
Do a push up – Oh ya! A push up will cause your blood to flow and give you a new frame of mind for your thinking about what is possible for you.
Answer these questions: If I could have anything I wanted – a) what would it be? (get clear!) b) why do I really want it? (reasons are what drive us to do things) c) what 1 thing can I do right now to move closer to it? (who do you need to speak to, what do you need to research, where should you go?)
Focus is the first step. This is how you get out of the mud pile you may be spinning your wheels in. “Working crazy hours is not the solution to long-term success – there is another way.”
Yours in Midlife.
Canada’s #1 ‘Reinventing Midlife Dreams’ Coach
Award Winning Expert
Author, How to Reinvent Midlife Dreams