How can i begin to feel unstuck in my own life? how can i change things?

I often feel like life has passed me by, like I'm just going through the motions in the same routine every day. like i won't ever be able to accomplish the dreams I had in life and because I've been doing it for so long i don't even know what my personal dreams are anymore. I'm just sick of my situation and tired of life happening to me.
Asked by DJ

Thank you for submitting your question. I am sorry that you are facing some challenges in your life right now.

It is actually rather normal to feel tired of life. We can all feel exhausted and low at certain points in life. It can seem like we are the only ones experiencing this. But you aren’t alone. Many people go through this. And many people come out on the other side. You can, too. There is hope for change.

It’s certainly a heavy weight to bear when you are not excited by your life. Or when you find you just don’t feel happy or sad – you feel more numb and even emotionless. There is not much to look forward to. There is nothing you feel passionate about. You feel like you once had dreams and expectations. But none of that is alive within you anymore. You are emotionally, physically, and spiritually done. You’re running in circles, going nowhere fast.

You are in a bad spot right now. You feel stuck. But life is dynamic. Ever changing. You got to this spot. And you weren’t always feeling trapped. So based on that it stands to reason that it most certainly is possible to overcome all this and get in a new space. We are always evolving. Just as life shifted and you landed here, you can move again. Believe that.

It’s important to keep in mind that you don’t have to embark on a mission to find your life’s purpose and meaning. It’s wonderful if you can find those things. But don’t start out feeling like that’s what you need to achieve. We can almost drive ourselves a bit mad if we’re seeking out the “perfect” path and solution. Don’t let the quest for the ideal answer keep you from appreciating the “good” and “good enough” steps which are a part of all our lives. Life is ups and downs. Life is sometimes good, and sometimes we are in the lessons and struggles.

On the journey, it can help to be sure you spend some time reflecting on what’s missing. We all have the obvious basic needs which must be addressed – food, clothing, oxygen, shelter, etc. Yet, beyond that there are some other essentials which, if left neglected, tend to lead us into a state of unhappiness and emptiness. So, consider if these needs are being met for you. Think about the following. Think about if you are meeting each need – and how. If you aren’t meeting the need, then reflect on what might be getting in the way and what you could do differently to make sure if gets met.

The need to give and receive attention. We are all of us social creatures and need regular time to connect with other people. It can look like taking a class or joining a club. Even the most introverted amongst us still has a need for quality contact.

The need to care for the body and mind. Neglecting proper nutrition, sleep, rest, and exercise long-term leads to psychological problems and stress-induced illness.

The need for community and for making a meaningful contribution to the world around us. Taking the focus off of self contributes to making us happier. It gives us meaning and purpose to serve others.

The need for goals. We benefit when we have things we are working towards. It can help to consider categories and what you maybe want to be working towards in each – relationships, financial, career, etc.

The need for creativity. What can you learn? What skill can you improve? How can you explore and stretch yourself a bit – just for fun?

The need for intimacy. It’s common for this need to go unmet. That’s normal. But it’s still an important need. We benefit from having a small circle of family and friends that we can closely connect with. If this is an area of opportunity, consider that being in therapy means having another person hold space for you. Therapy sessions are a chance to practice being in deep relationship with another human being. Therapy can be a great launching point as you begin becoming less isolated. Beyond this, you’ll need to reach out to resources to connect. A support group and/or online support site could be a good start.

The need for status. This means different things to each person. It could mean being a good parent. It could mean being a dedicated volunteer at your church. We all have something to contribute. You have value to add. One way to meet this need is to volunteer and give to others in some way.

The need for control. We all need to have some control over some things in life. It can be as simple as recognizing that you have control over whether you are going to go for a walk in the park or that you get to control what books you are going to read.

The need for safety. Do you feel safe in your environment? Are the people you know safe? If not, what needs to change? 

This is all a starting point. Are these basic essential needs being met in your life?

If you continue to feel stuck, a therapist can be of help. They can work with you to come up with a change to make some positive changes and then can help you achieve those goals.