Three reasons why we sometimes get stuck


The first three competencies of Inner Leadership are the abilities to:

  1. stay calm in a crisis
  2. make clear sense of the situation, and then
  3. find the opportunities

But even when we have these skills we can still sometimes find ourselves stuck. There are three main reasons for this.

The first is called overthinking or paralysis by analysis. This is when we think too much: flipping back and forth between alternatives and their possible consequences, looking for the right solution but never finding it. Like Hamlet we ask ourselves, “Option A or Option B, or C, or D, that is the question…” But we never take a decision.

The second possible reason for finding ourselves stuck is not knowing who we want to become, the destiny we want to create for ourselves. If we don’t know where we want to get to, how can we choose our best way forward?

And the third reason is fear: fear of what we might encounter along the way. Fear of failure or fear of success.

The fourth competency of Inner Leadership is to learn the tools that can help us identify, understand, and remove these blockages:

  1. To accept that in a time of change we will never find 100% certainty
  2. To know what matters most to us, who we are, and who we most want to become
  3. To choose the way forward now that best leads us towards that, knowing that it probably won’t turn out exactly the way we expect, and that’s OK

Once we have this fourth competency then we can get ourselves unstuck. Because we know what matters most to us, what most inspires and engages us. And as we move towards it, we know that no matter what happens we will be able to remain calm, make sense of the situation, find new opportunities, and again move forward towards the one that suits us best.

Have you ever found yourself stuck in a situation? Was it because you were afraid, didn’t know what you wanted to create instead, or were overthinking? And when you moved forward, did you choose the way forward that inspired you most?

Adapted from Inner Leadership: tools for building inspiration in times of change.

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