Stuck: How to Move Forward

Cover image from Justin Wolff on Unsplash.


Ever feel stuck? Stuck in your job, your housing, your relationship, or any situation. You try to find a way past some obstacle but there’s always more in your way. You know what you want but the path seems cluttered with excuses, opposition, and an unrelenting blockade of reasons you can’t move forward.

What’s worse is that people try to give you advice but you’ve tried it already. They don’t understand. They don’t know you and your position. It’s too much trouble to explain it, so you smile and nod and pretend you don’t need help. You’re good; everything’s all good.

But it’s not. You’re stuck. And it’s making you miserable.

Realigning Your Goals

When you want something, you feel inclined to make it a goal, but what if you’re missing something? What if realigning your goals to something that suits you better will make them more attainable? There’s a few ways to make sure that what you want is what’s right for you. Ask yourself:

  1. What’s my biggest need?
  2. What’s the first thing that will get me there?
  3. What are my obstacles?
  4. What steps must be taken to overcome those obstacles?
  5. Are those obstacles part of another need?
  6. If so, is there another way to attain my goal?
  7. What’s my biggest priority in all this?

Review those questions as often as your path towards your goal shifts. Write it down if needed. Writing it down can help solidify your resolve to work out your situation and stay goal-focused. These steps urge you to move forward towards success.

Staying on Target

In order to avoid getting stuck again, or even more stuck, you need to stay on target. Sightseeing while driving is a dangerous habit and leads to veering off the road or worse. When staying on target to move forward to your goals, you need to keep your eyes ahead, anticipating turns and planning for variables in the road.

Dr. Kerry Petsinger of LifeHack writes about getting unstuck in Feeling Stuck? Here’s Why And How to Get Unstuck in Life (2022). Among her suggestions are:

  • Set Goals that Matter – If a goal doesn’t line up with your priorities and values, you’re going to have a harder time staying on target. Your motivation and drive will dwindle and you’ll be off course more often than not.
  • Approach Life Differently – Just because something’s always been done a certain way, doesn’t mean it has to stay that way. Creating new routines or starting new habits can be difficult at first, but if it helps you move forward, it’s worth the effort.
  • Control Your Mindset – Negative self-talk is never effective in goal chasing. Having a positive outlook and accepting where you are and remaining positive about where you’re going will drive you to move forward towards your goals.

Moving Past Obstacles

As you travel the path to success, there will be obstacles, no doubt. The best way to overcome them is to focus on the next small step. When the obstacles are pebbles in the road, you can easily step over them. When they’re boulders, you may need to break down your goals into smaller steps in order to move forward.

Be sure to take a moment once in a while to notice all you’ve accomplished so far. Those baby steps got you further than whining about being stuck and not doing anything. Even a tiny step is a step forward. “Give yourself credit for getting started and for being persistent. Once you start, you are in motion, so celebrate the new beginning and take pride in your journey” (Carla Shuman, Ph.D., How to Get Unstuck and Achieve Your Goals, 2022).

Moving Forward

Moving Forward is a choice. Ultimately, you need to choose to get uncomfortable, make a change, find a new routine, and ride some waves. If you feel stuck and want to move forward, start asking yourself the right questions. You could also confide in a friend or a coach. In the end, you need to make the decision to get yourself unstuck. The answers are inside of you.