I've gotten several emails lately from both friends and clients who are feeling stuck. Although everyone's situation is different, what we all have in common when it comes to stuck-ness is a desperation to be unstuck as quickly and easily as possible.
As I struggle to stay interested and awake and curious while we're in Oklahoma City, I'm realizing this is an opportunity to be supremely transparent with you and to share the two things I'm actually doing to combat my own feelings of stuck-ness.
First, I'm having to decide how attached I am to my current stuck-ness. (Hint: We're usually more attached to our crap than we think.) This technique involves asking myself a lot of questions.
How much of my complaining about being in Oklahoma is out of habit? In other words, do I keep complaining about being in Oklahoma because I've always complained about being in Oklahoma?
Has complaining about this place become my shtick?
Do I really want Oklahoma jokes to be my shtick?
Have I accepted and perpetuated this feeling of stuck-ness simply because it's familiar and known and can be performed on autopilot? (Dammit if those well-worn neural pathways don't get me every. single. time.)
In asking myself these questions, I'm immediately reminded of Laura Simms's brilliant blog post, "Why We Create Pain." It's short and perfect; go read it and then come back here. Questioning myself like this isn't meant to be a third-degree sort of situation; it's merely an effort to get below the surface of the behaviors and attitudes that might or might not be serving me (and serving the 'me' I want to be).
Next, I'm trying to let go of as many expectations as I can. I've found that it's actually my unmet expectation that the people in this city will drive courteously that angers and frustrates me—more so than the reckless driving itself. Once I accept that irresponsible drivers abound on these highways, I cease to be surprised and flattened by all the individual instances of irresponsible driving. Regardless of my strong beliefs about road safety (or anything, for that matter), I'm teaching myself to curb my tendency to translate those beliefs into expectations—particularly expectations that need to be met in order for me to feel good. I can reallocate that energy toward being a useful copilot, predicting which car will swerve next or inexplicably brake; I can also sit back, close my eyes, and let Dana be the excellent defensive driver that he is. Either is better than expecting reality to be something other than what it has already shown itself to be.
So, to summarize:
How attached am I to this stuck-ness, and am I willing to become less attached to it?
Where am I allowing my expectations to run the show, and how can I release them in favor of accepting what actually is?
Are you feeling stuck? Hop over here to request a free 90-minute unsticking session with me. I want to help.
Notes from the week of May 29
READ & NODDED MY HEAD
+ "We are almost always filtering what we say we want through the lens of what we think we can get"
+ "A virtue disguise is something you do that looks good from the outside, but is doing not so great things to your insides. It’s what you hide behind, that looks all noble, or generous, or work ethic-y, but is actually obscuring how you really feel about things, what you know to be true about what you need or want"
+ The Red Cup, a new-to-us coffee house in OKC