• Nicole Soer

How to Get Unstuck

When was the last time you felt stuck? Stuck on a task, out of ideas, struggling with moving forward in a project?


It's not being stuck that is the problem for me; instead, it's my thoughts around being stuck. I am afraid that I can't get unstuck, or am overwhelmed with the number of projects, or am working on an unenjoyable task, or am learning something that is currently over my head.

One option, of course, is to just abandon the task. Another option is to realize that not taking action (a.k.a. being stuck) is actually a decision. If no action is a decision, then consider other possible decisions that are geared for action.


1: Use Google to synonym an idea.

For example, I googled "synonym for stuck" because "unstuck" didn't give me a lot of options. The word "stuck" has many, many synonyms which helped create associations to other ideas for getting unstuck.

2: Step away from the thing that has you stuck.

Take a walk or go to lunch. Just stop thinking about what has you stuck. This almost always opens the door for a new way of looking at something and.

3: Focus for fifteen minutes.

Focus solely on the task at hand for fifteen minutes. Turn off your email, silence your cell phone notifications, take off your Apple watch, put your phone into voicemail, lock yourself into a conference room. Do whatever it takes to eliminate distractions and focus on the task at hand for fifteen minutes. Set a timer for fifteen minutes and focus.

4: Look at the big picture.

What is the purpose of the task? Who or how will it help? What's the most important part of this project? What's one thing I can do to move the project forward?

5: Put on some music.

Sometimes I need 80's dance music, sometimes I need classical music, sometimes I need ocean wave sounds. Music can help me focus and energize me.

6: Be consistent.

Create small habits for consistency. A quote by Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit, sums it up well: "The difference between who you are and who you want to be is what you do."


I would love if you shared your best ideas for getting un-stuck!

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