Hi friends! Today we’re going to talk about getting unstuck – in our work, in our spiritual and home lives, and in our relationships. If you’re feeling like things are always going sideways and you’re not sure why, then welcome! Even though social media keeps this secret pretty well, you’re in good company. In my experience, everyone is at least one or two flavors of hot mess, so I promise not to judge if you won’t. You’re among friends here.
What Stuck Looks Like
There is a deep ocean in you. Not of water, but of God, and the image of God, and the beautiful and true and important things He has put you here to do. You have so much in you that you don’t even know the depths of yet. So much beauty, so much talent, and so much potential. Even if you are doubting whether these words apply to you, even as you read them, something in you is swelling and stirring, rising, reaching, as if to say, yes, this is the truth. As if to say, yes, there is more to me. Listen to that part. That is the image of God in you, ready to unfold in the sun and bless the world with new light to better see His face.
The problem is, sometimes we just get stuck.
I remember waking up one day and realizing my job was the cause of so many problems in my life. As a social worker, I honestly felt like I never had a moment to just breathe. There was always a chance my phone would ring, and on the other end would be a hospital, police officer, or foster parent with bad news that would pull me out of my pajamas at any hour of the night or my day off and into the latest catastrophe. The stress was unreal. My hair began to fall out, I stopped sleeping. I loved the kids and families on my caseload to absolute bits, but the level of stress and panic 24/7 was unsustainable for me (and for many, which is why the job has a sky high turnover rate). I wanted to make a difference, but I was running on empty. I was stuck.
Chris and I have been together for more than five years now, and there have been times when all that has held us together was grace and scotch tape. I remember one night when we had one of the worst fights, a really ugly one. Neither of us was communicating very well and we tumbled into this terrible conversation loop that went something like this: me – “I will NOT let you speak to me that way.” Him – “You will NOT tell me what I can and cannot do.” Lather, rinse, repeat. We literally repeated those things to each other probably three times. (Three guesses on whether it got us anywhere.) Neither of us were speaking to the other with kindness or empathy. We were caught in a bad feedback loop. Stuck.
When we moved into our apartment from the one that was half its size and always a mess, we promised each other and ourselves that we would NEVER let it get as messy as the last place had. But we both worked all day and by the time we got home, we barely had enough time and energy to hit a drive-thru, let alone grocery shop, cook, and do some laundry or dishes. Weekends were our only full days together, and it felt better to go out and have fun than to stay in and do housework. So we fell into a pattern that wasn’t working – the kitchen would be a mess, so I wouldn’t feel like cooking in the mess, so then we would eat fast food again, which wasn’t great for our health OR our pocketbooks. And the cycle continued. We were stuck…again!
All aboard the hot mess express, right? Maybe I’m the only one, but I don’t think so. We humans are hilarious and clumsy and I swear we manage to create our own personal hell in just about every area of life, but four big ones are our work, our home lives, our spiritual lives, and our relationships. Over the next few weeks, we’ll be discussing how to get UNstuck, because your life is too precious and too important, and you are too valuable and beautiful, to spend the bulk of your time on anything other than what you were made to do. Are you with me in that? Think of this series as a non-judgy handbook for how to get your ish together.
Next time we’ll tackle getting unstuck in our work, and by “work,” I mean the calling that is yours and yours alone. The thing you were put here to do. If that’s something that makes you feel sorta stuck, stay tuned.
In the meantime, is it okay if I challenge you to spend some time thinking of an area of life where you have some stuck-ness going on? Sometimes an important step to getting free is telling somebody what’s got you in chains, so feel free to use the comments section as a “hey! I’m stuck!” confessional. I promise you, there are so many of us out here who will say, “me too, sister.” Sometimes that helps the load feel a little bit lighter, when we know we’re not alone. I know it does for me.
P.S. You’ll be able to come back here to find every post in the Unstuck series as they’re posted:
Part 1: Our Work
Part 2: Our Home
Part 3: Our Relationships
Part 4: Our Spirit