12 solutions when you don't know what to do
You hit the wall sooner or later.
In your dream-catching, in your growth, in your healing.
There comes a time when everything just seems impossible. You have to make tough choices, you feel stuck, you just don't see a way out. As far as you're concerned, there is no way out.
Sometimes you have to choose between two equally impossible options. Or you literally have no options at all.
And sometimes your problem is so complicated, so intricate and complex that no matter how much you think about it, and how much you try – you just can't find a way out of the maze.
Because there are no ways out, or at least if there are – you can't see them – which means that they are useless, anyways.
I know how it feels. The frustration, the desperation, the panic.
The feeling of being suffocated by life, slowly and painfully.
And you're not waving, but drowning.
Yet, I know from my work as a life coach – and from personal experience overcoming a wide list of trauma and disease – that even the most impossible situations have solutions. Sometimes the way out doesn't look like you expected it to, or even wanted it to. And it certaily doesn't appear when you most need it. But it's still a way out!
12 solutions when you don't know what to do
Examine your assumptions
Take a moment and look at the situation from a disstance. Where are you assuming something that you can't truly know for sure? Ask yourself if you are mistaking correlation for causation. Are you seeing links where there are none? Be especially wary of the language you use. Absolutes like have to, impossible, can't and should are words that should make an alarm bell ring in your mind.
Accept your situation
Very often, a lack of clarity comes from arguing with realty. When we are consumed by wishing things were different, it is very hard to think smart about your current situation. Take a deep breath and acknowledge the way things are right now. It is okay to work towards something different, but do it from a place of peace.
Ramp up your self-care
How much self-care is enough self-care? As a rule of thumb, your level of self-care could be proportionate to the level of difficulty that you are facing. Does your life suck right now? Ramp up your care! You know what is best for you, but many a decision has been made during a walk in the forest or a hot bath... Do something that feels amazing and take a break from problem-solving and let the solution come to you instead.
An oldie, but a goodie... Getting help is an investment you will very rarely regret. Call in your friends, place and ad, barter, buy or hire. Help comes in all shapes and forms – and it can look like anything from a clinical psychologist, redheaded life coach, a friend, your mum, a book, or a stranger sitting next to you in the coffee shop.
Try something new
We often get stuck in the same patterns of thought when we stick to the same patterns of life. Try something new and exciting, to give your brain a chance to make some new connections. Join a class, take an online course, go to a museum or walk a different way than normal.
Ask yourself for advice
Try writing a question to yourself on a piece of paper and write an answer to yourself without thinking. Let the hand move fast and scribble down the first thing that comes to mind. Very often we already know what we need to know, we are just frightened of the implications of knowing it.
Think outside the box
...or pretend that there was no box at all. What would you do if you could choose with no limitations or restrictins? What would your decision look like if you didn't have to consider other people? What if you were someone else? ? More impulsive? Less afraid?
Just do something
Often it can help to just do something. To quote Lewis Carroll, "If you don't know where you are going, any road will take you there." Sometimes taking action will get the momentum going, and you might find yourself with a renewed sense of direction. Go for it!
When you don't know what to do... try to do nothing at all. Why the rush? It's hard to make decisions when you are tired and under pressure. Often the pressure is entirely our own, often based on assumptions of other people's expectations. Take the time that you need, and give yourself a break.
Sleep on it
There's a reason why we have this expression. It totally works! Don't make important decisions late at night, but instead wait until you have had a good nights sleep on it. Exhaustion and tiredness can totally cloud your judgement, so if you can it always best to problem-solve when your mind is fresh. As an added bonus, your mind will most likely process information and work in the background while you sleep.
What do YOU do when you don't know what to do?