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By Kellie Mox
I received the invitation for a free coaching session with Jocelyn almost two years ago. A mutual friend shared the offer with me, and I signed up without pause, as you do when you’ve been a coach and know how powerful a coaching conversation can be. That single twenty-minute session catalyzed a shift that delivered me here to the writing, coaching, and healing work I’m doing today.
At that time, I was in what I call “the stuck place.” I was feeling a pull to return to coaching after a nine-year hiatus, during which I’d focused on nurturing kids and healing. But I was also telling myself the story that I needed to have certain things in place before that could happen. I needed a website. I needed to renew my credentialing. I needed to do more healing. I needed to know what it was all going to look like before I could embrace myself as a coach again. Who was I to just jump back into this work?
Thankfully, Jocelyn reminded me of something important I’d once known but since forgotten: that it was okay to focus on the being and then integrate the doing. For me, this meant letting go of figuring out all the logistics before I could be the coach I knew I already was. Cue the “a-ha” moment (always my favorite moment in a coaching conversation, as client or coach).
After that conversation, I crafted a new story, one that empowered me to move forward without having it all figured out. Eighteen months later, those “necessities” aren’t all in place, and that’s okay. I’ve made progress on those to-do’s, but the fact that they’re incomplete doesn’t hold me back in the stuck place and keep me from showing up as the coach that I am.
I could share volumes of similar stories from my own life and the lives of others — moments or even weeks of sitting in the stuck place, followed by baby steps or, sometimes, giant leaps forward when that a-ha moment permeates the mind. It’s one of the greatest gifts that coaching has to offer — the power to catalyze new thinking and ways of being that free us from the walls of our own limiting thoughts, beliefs, and stories. But I’m not in the business of people depending on me to get unstuck. I believe the power of coaching is not only in the coaching session, but even more so in taking what we learn and integrating it in our life. We all need support, and we can also learn to support ourselves so we can move forward every day.
If you find yourself in a stuck place right now, don’t misunderstand —being there isn’t completely a bad thing. While it can be uncomfortable or immobilizing, it also provides an opportunity to grow and evolve in our connection with ourselves, others, and the world. Whether you feel stuck on a career move, eating or exercise habits, negative thinking, a physical symptom, or overwhelm mode, there are things you can do right now to support yourself in getting unstuck. And remember, baby steps are just as important as giant leaps when it comes to moving forward. You got this!
Practice self-awareness. This may seem obvious, but it’s the most important thing to remember, as it is the foundation upon which all our movement rests. When you become more aware of your own automatic patterns, limiting beliefs, disempowering thoughts, or coping mechanisms, you can have an in-the-moment conversation with yourself that shakes up the stagnation. Being self-aware might look like pausing when you notice a loop of negative self-talk or self-sabotaging behavior. It might be asking yourself powerful questions, like “How is this serving me right now?” It might mean spending time reflecting and journaling. It takes practice to strengthen this awareness muscle, but it will always serve you.
Consider the bold “What if?” When you’re stuck, it’s often hard to imagine being in any other place. Often, we make up stories about our “stuckness,” and we become so married to them that choices elude us. But our stories are just stories; they may be true or false or a little bit of both. You can explore new stories by asking yourself bold “what if” questions. What if this story I’m telling myself is not true? What if I chose a different, more empowering story? What if this is all for me? When we recognize that we have choices even in the midst of our stuckness, we can take the story into our own hands and write a narrative that feels more empowering and energizing.
Just be. Sometimes we need to focus on simply being. This echoes Jocelyn’s reminder to focus on how you want to be before diving too deep into the doing. For me, this looked like showing up as a coach for others for free before I had the logistics of my business figured out, because I aimed to be in connection with and in service to others. It involves surrendering a bit, to be sure. This does not mean complete inaction; rather, it means letting go of your expectations of how things should look and staying curious about how they could look. When you let go and focus on how you want to show up, you’re also more open to the messages, synchronicities, and opportunities that come your way, and you may be surprised to feel more movement happening organically and without force.
Just do it. A complement to just being is taking inspired action. Sometimes we need to do something if we’ve been in a state of inaction for a long time. Making a joyful, energizing choice to do something that makes you feel alive, even if that choice comes with some discomfort, is sure to get you out of your head and into your heart and body, opening new channels of forward movement. This might look like signing up for the free coaching session like I did, reaching out to a new friend, taking the cooking class you’ve been contemplating, turning up your favorite song and dancing in your bedroom, or saying “no” to something on your to-do list. That coping mechanism of overthinking everything, which may have served you at some point, is sure to keep you stuck (I know from experience). Halt the incessant thinking and just do it.
When It’s Not Enough
Sometimes we’re stuck in a way that feels beyond manageable. Indeed, chronic stored stress, as well as big or little traumas in your life, may be keeping your physiology stuck in a frozen state, making any movement or action seem unfathomable. This is definitely a time to seek support from a trauma-informed coach or therapist who can help support the nervous system shifts that will facilitate forward movement. All the powerful questions and inspired actions may not be enough if your survival physiology has taken over the decision-making for you.
I recently discovered and fell in love with this quote: “Discomfort is not a terminal condition.” While it may feel uncomfortable being in the stuck place — and it will certainly feel uncomfortable stretching yourself out of it — remember that it’s not permanent. And even when you move beyond the stuck place, you’ll surely find yourself stuck again one day. But now, when that day comes (and with practice), you can be empowered to support yourself and seek support when you need it.
Kellie Mox catalyzes revolutionary healing for women through powerful conversations and whole-health mentoring. She is passionate about authentic, meaningful connections—to the self, others, and the world—and believes that healing flourishes when we strengthen these connections and embrace our wholeness.
Kellie is a certified coach and a student of homeopathic medicine with a master’s in health behavior and health education. She works with women virtually and in-person from her home base in Ann Arbor, Michigan.