There are few experiences more demoralizing than feeling stuck in business. Distractibility and lack of motivation overpower us. Our bodies feel sluggish. Our brains are clouded and uninspired.
Some experts say that only business-type tasks can get us unstuck. They recommend activities like tweaking your brand, marketing strategy, or publicity methods. There is risk involved with this approach. Like quicksand, the more effort we exert trying to get unstuck from the mire, the deeper we sink.
Unfortunately, feeling stuck can trigger desperation, even panic. As a result, we grasp at those go-to habits that we believe will help us power through (staying ‘too busy’ for anything but work, surviving on caffeine and convenience foods, burning the midnight oil, etc.).
These tactics may be easy to access but fail to deliver the results we desire. Instead of relying on a ‘just do it’ attitude, tap into the power of smart actions that support us at a deeper level.
The truth is, our everyday habits are at the root of our achievements.
In fact, studies show a direct correlation between feelings of work burnout and level of work-life balance. [1, 2]
Try one of these brazen, outside-the-box solutions to get yourself on solid ground again:
1. Spark momentum with movement
When we’re feeling stuck in business, a popular reaction is to push ourselves to get tasks done. We plant ourselves in front of the computer and try to forge our way through (turning to coffee for energy in lieu of meals). Here’s a tidbit of uncommon knowledge: we can’t fix a problem with the same habits that got us stuck here to begin with.
If forcing feels like it should be effective, but hasn’t worked so far, this is a sign that we actually need the opposite. Forcing only cements you in that stuck feeling, instead of freeing you from it.
What if *god forbid* you walked away from work for five minutes? Not only does taking a break from our desks freshen physical energy – it gets us unstuck mentally, too. Physical activity increases oxygen levels in the brain. This gives our minds energy to innovate, create, and solve problems. These are the building blocks for business success.
Because our emotional energy can get trapped in our muscles and tissues, sitting still literally exacerbates feeling blocked. In order to relieve this, start with moving your physical body. Try these easy yoga poses to shift stagnant energy and reset the body and mind. I also love this pro tip to refresh energy fast (see #3).
2. Recharge with a change of scenery
Simple environmental changes stimulate inspiration. This helps to free ourselves from the patterns that keep us stuck. One quick and easy way to refresh is to get outside. Nature inspires awe, whether it’s the tiniest flowerbud or the most spectacular sunset. Exposure to nature boosts mood and sparks creativity. It opens our minds to infinite possibility.
Stepping into fresh surroundings doesn’t need to be an all-day event. Stand outside your front door and indulge your senses. Just 5 minutes is enough to boost mood.  What do you see, hear, smell, feel? Notice the contrast of light beaming through tree branches, music of a songbird, invigorating freshness of rain-soaked grass, or a cool breeze on your face. Linger in this moment and pay attention to the way it affects your mood and energy. Hold that feeling as you return to your work.
What if you don’t have easy access to a pleasurable naturescape? Bring it indoors with a potted plant or vase of fresh flowers. Research shows that even viewing a portrait featuring nature can boost executive attention. 
Whether it’s taking time outdoors or updating our decor, refreshing our atmosphere keeps energy flowing.
3. Unearth the roots of procrastination
Mindlessly scrolling socials or binge-watching the latest series overrides goal-driven action. This procrastination is often a symptom of avoiding something deeper.
Some in the spiritual community call this ‘emotional bypassing.’ Psychology Today describes it as, “practice in the service of repression, usually because we can not tolerate what we are feeling, or think that we shouldn’t be experiencing what we are feeling.”
No matter your background or beliefs, this means you’re avoiding your humanness. Most of us do it at some point or another. It’s ingrained in our culture to stuff or deny our emotions. We learn from a young age that unpleasant emotions are ‘negative’ and should not be expressed.
The truth is, in this state, your subconscious is calling the shots. So stop abandoning yourself and dig into what your actions are trying to escape on the sly.
You might discover that you beat yourself up for ‘lacking willpower or discipline.’ Instead, ask yourself “Why don’t I want to do this right now?” See what rises to the surface.
Do you feel like you’d only be doing it out of obligation to someone else’s ‘shoulds’?
It could be sparking resistance because it’s misaligned with your values.
Does it feel like a huge demand on your energy?
Consider it a signal of the need for an intentional break or brief rest.
Fun Fact: I kept track of how many times I felt stuck writing this post and chose to use the tips above -seven!
Busyness is an Outdated Virtue
The solutions provided here may initially seem like indulgences you don’t have time for. It’s ok – I used to feel this way too. With continued practice, they’ve helped me experience enhanced fulfillment and productivity in business.
It’s the times I feel way too busy to pause and lean into these, that I know I truly need them the most. And they never fail to reignite my passion and energy for and in my business. I trust that, with practice, this will help you stop feeling stuck in your business too.