Published: 18 Apr 2018
Updated: 13 Aug 2021
Category: Compass Tips

Holding On When You're Stuck Between A Rock And A Hard Place


Some days are diamonds and some days are stones… and there are some days when everything isn’t enough – days when we feel like giving up. Winding up in such situations is normal.  But what you do when you feel like giving up will determine a lot about where your life will go.

Let’s look at 5 habits that could help you hold on or change direction when you’re stuck between a rock and a hard place.

Be Realistic
Tap into realistic expectations not by listening to advertising that promises you quick results. Not by listening to the perfectionism – from the people around you – that allows no mistakes or failures.

Be realistic. Listen to the people who have already gone where you want to go. Listen to the people who know what works and how you will stumble and fail along the way and can tell you how long your journey may take. You won’t get an exact blueprint, but the things people can tell you can be great guidance.

Take A Step Back & Look At The Big Picture
It’s easy to lose sight of the big picture in our everyday lives. But if you feel like giving up then try reconnecting with why you are doing what you are doing. Take a step back and really look at the big picture. It maybe because you need to:

  • Support your family and take care of them.

  • Have a better quality of life

  • Have the funds - to explore new things, get inspired and expand on your sphere of influences.

Now write your answers down (and keep it somewhere close) so that whenever you feel like giving up, you can pull out that piece of paper with your most powerful why(s). It often helps.

Remember: It’s Darkest Before The Dawn
The English theologian and historian Thomas Fuller appears to be the first person to commit the notion that 'the darkest hour is just before the dawn' to print. This notion implies that when things seem to be at their lowest point with your business, your writing efforts, or your person life in general something always happens – it forces you to change something in how you do things.

But maybe also because life seems to have some kind of balance if you just keep going. If you keep taking action instead of giving up and doing nothing then something good always happens and it will help you out through those rough days or weeks - it brings some comfort even when things look pretty dark.

Get Back or Go Down That Long And Winding Road
But what happens when you come up against a wall or you experience a longer than usual rough patch? Try simplifying and reconnecting with the basics. It is easy to become overwhelmed by all the information out there about any change you can make in life. That can lead to confusion on many fronts and to trying to do too many things at once.

In a situation like this, focus on a few things at a time, be tolerant, keep a positive attitude and build a rapport socially. Reach out to people – they’re not as closed as you think. Reconnecting with the basics often works well. But sometimes changing or adjusting your course slightly may be the trick. Get out of your comfort zone a little. Go down that winding road or get back to the basics – your roots.

Time To Throw In The Towel…And Get A New One
Sometimes it is not time to give up. But it may be time to quit what you are doing and to try something else. But if you feel like giving up or you are bored a lot, if you feel no real passion or excitement or curiosity about a change in your current path then ask yourself these two questions: Am doing this because I truly want it? Or am I doing it because someone told me to or because so many people around me seem to have done it or are working on it?

What you want isn’t easy to know before you get started though. You may need to try different paths before you find one that fits you. And just because everyone around you seems to love running doesn’t mean that you have to love it or that you have to give up on the habit of regular exercise.

Try doing something that makes you happy, play a sport or if you’re not into sport, cheer wildly, get that frustration out or try hiking, biking, music or reading or whatever floats your boat instead. Try a new way of doing what you want and see if it is a better fit and more enjoyable for you. Do what you want - everything else will fall gradually into place and for Heaven’s sake, give yourself time and have patience.


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