How to Get Unstuck

Sharon Barnes Highly Sensitive, Overcoming Adversity 1 Comment

Do you ever feel stuck? Find one thing piling on top of another? I can relate. Sometimes we don’t realize we’re getting stuck until we’re immobilized. For CSGY’s, this can look like over-committing time, having too much to do with it all seeming crucial, or being interested in so many things that we have trouble choosing among them which leads to getting paralyzed and doing nothing. It can take many forms. The question is, how to we get unstuck?

Before we consider that, another question begs asking: What’s a CSGY? CSGY is an acronym for Creative, (Highly) Sensitive, Gifted people. It can be further specified with CSIGY and CSEGY, for introverts or extroverts.  I like to pronounce it Csiggy or Cseggy. Someone has suggested Ziggy or Zeggy.

Satin StitchesTo address the issue of getting unstuck, I’d like to share some life lessons that are currently showing up for me. My present Creative & Contemplative Handwork project, Unraveling Chaos, includes satin stitching. Satin stitching is a zigzag stitch with a very short distance Piled up stitchesbetween stitches. It’s supposed to be so smooth that it looks like satin, hence the name. I’ve been having trouble with some of these stitches getting stuck and piling up on top of each other. What a mess!

When something like this happens, my first inclination is to take the stitches out and start over. But since this art piece is also a metaphor for life, I’ve refrained myself. In life I can’t stop, back up and start over, so I’ve limited my options here to those available on this planet. I’ve then had a choice to make: give up on the project or find a way to get unstuck and resume normal stitching. Metaphor for life? Yes, indeed. My commitment to reality has also meant that I’ve had to face my frustration, anger, guilt, fear and shame about its many imperfections.

Like many CSGY’s, I want what I do to be perfect. No, I NEED it to be perfect. If what I do isn’t perfect, then I’m not perfect, and I’m supposed to be flawless. Oh, I know that’s not logical, but what is? I know in my frontal lobes that no one is perfect, but that doesn’t stop me from feeling like I’m supposed to be perfect. It also doesn’t change the fact that I am aware of many things that others aren’t. This leads to others thinking that what I’ve done is perfect (and telling me so) when I know it’s far from it.

Stitches piled higher and deeperGetting unstuck first requires me to identify when the stitches are piling on top of each other.  When I don’t recognize that stitches are piling up, they pile higher, deeper and wider. The quicker I know that I’m getting stuck, the quicker I can get unstuck. This requires me to overcome perfectionism and see things the way they are rather than the way I want them to be or think they ought to be.

three monkeys2There’s a statue of three monkeys in my office: “See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil.” Maybe it was as prominent in your childhood as it was in mine.  Maybe not. It can be useful in teaching children to stay safe and in preventing gossip and negativity. On the other hand, it can hold us in Fantasy-Land. When this happens, we also need another set of Monkeys that allows us to connect with reality. This new set of monkeys brings this message:

Monkey Magic

  • See what you see.
  • Hear what you hear.
  • Feel what you feel.
  • Know what you know.
  • Think your own thoughts.
  • Say what you need to say.
  • Do what you need to do.
  • Be where you are.
  • Be who you (really) are.

When these new monkeys set the tone for our lives, we can catch on when things are off kilter much more quickly than we do when we’re out of touch with reality. These Nine Magical Monkeys give us permission to open up to all of life.  Welcoming them is the first step in getting unstuck. Click here to get a FREE printable file of Monkey Magic.

On a practical level, how can we embrace these nine magical monkeys? It starts with tuning in to what is going on inside of us and around us.  There’s a skill to this, just as there is with anything new with music, we practice scales and chords. With physical strength, we can do push-ups and sit-ups or lift weights. Here, we ask ourselves, “What’s happening?” and “How am I feeling?” Feelings include body sensations and emotions.  Just as with musical skill and physical development, it helps to practice daily.

It takes less than ten minutes a day to develop a habit of openness and awareness.  It’s done best when we use a consistent time of day. Many CSGY’s find that writing down their discoveries reinforces the habit, involves both the kinesthetic and visual brains, and paves the way to return to it later, review what’s recorded and identify trends or patterns.  To make this easier, I’ve developed a “Daily Tune-in Tool” that many CSGY’s have found helpful in developing the awareness habit. Click here to get your FREE printable file.

Our next edition will share other CSGY Tips and Tools for Getting Unstuck, that are also emerging from my encounter with Unraveling Chaos.

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