If you’re broke, in a toxic relationship or are experiencing monotony in your career, it’s easy to feel hopelessly stuck. It seems impossible to pull yourself out of your depressing situation and, besides, where would you start? When you feel stuck in a rut, it’s easy to let stress and despair blind you from opportunities to dig yourself out. You’re so focused on the negative, you don’t notice the positives.
But, the good news is, even in the direst of situations, things are never as hopeless as they seem. It is possible to create a new life for yourself. You just have to know where to begin.
Here are a few steps you can take to climb out of the pit, reach your goals and start a new life.
Before you decide where to go, you must first evaluate where you are. Examine your current situation and pinpoint the factors that are causing you to feel stuck. What problems in your life have you inflicted on yourself and what issues have been caused by others or uncontrollable events? Is this issue something you can fix or change? What parts of your old life do you want to leave behind? Ask yourself these questions and consider writing down your answers to put precise words to your emotions.
Once you self reflect, you can identify what’s causing you to feel stuck and then determine a strategy to change your situation. If you can make things work as they are, focus on fostering a more positive mindset. This may be enough to improve your situation. But, if you decide you need to make some major life changes, you can move on to the next step.
Identify Goals and Ways to Reach Them
What do you want your new life to look like? Don’t be afraid to think big and outside the box. Envision your dream job, your ideal relationship or even what kinds of hobbies you’d have in your free time. Now, how do you accomplish these dreams? Well, the first step to success is to write out specific actions you must take to reach your goals.
Consider unhealthy habits or friendships you need to leave behind. Fill this empty time with new healthy habits and people who will encourage you and root for you on this journey. Spend some time listing small, specific actions that will eventually lead you to your goal. Apply for new jobs, open a bank account, join an AA group, or start a diet plan. Just make sure these actions are measurable and actionable — “lose weight” is neither.
To keep yourself motivated, prioritize your steps so you see noticeable results from the very beginning. Change is difficult, so keeping things simple and quickly gratifying at the start will encourage you to keep going. For example, simply buying a gym membership or updating your resume are easy tasks, but will still give you a confidence boost.
Place the longer, more complex steps at the bottom of your list. These may require more commitment and a strong community surrounding you. You’re not likely to have either of this from the get-go and focusing on these first will only add unwanted stress. Remember, you need motivation, not discouragement.
Just Do It
Now, you have goals and the steps to accomplish them. The only thing left to do is to take that leap! Remember, the only thing standing in your way is you. If you never take action, nothing will ever change, and you may be stuck forever. If you find that fear of change is causing you to hesitate, ask a friend or family member to join you in accomplishing a specific goal or taking a step in the right direction.
Create the Life You Want to Live
The most important thing to remember on your journey to a new life is it’s your life, so create one that you want to live. Don’t compare your life to anyone else’s because everyone’s journey and goals look different. And never use someone else’s success to measure your own. Practice being grateful for how far your determination takes you — and has taken you in the past. Remembering to be thankful will help you be content and truly love living the life you cultivate for yourself.
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