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There’s a fine line between feeling stuck in life and actually being stuck.

When you’re feeling stuck, it often comes down to one thing: behavior.

Hello, I’m Lachlan Brown, the founder of Hack Spirit and a mindfulness/Buddhism expert. I’ve studied human behavior extensively, and I’ve found that there are certain behaviors that tend to keep us rooted in the same spot.

But guess what? You have the power to change these behaviors and start moving forward.

In this article, I want to share with you 7 behaviors to say goodbye to if you’re feeling stuck in life but want to move forward.

So let’s dive in, shall we?


1) Living in the past

We’ve all had that feeling of being stuck in life. And more often than not, it’s a result of us dwelling on past experiences.

As a mindfulness expert, I can tell you that living in the past can seriously inhibit your ability to move forward. It’s like trying to drive a car while constantly looking in the rearview mirror.


When you’re stuck in past mistakes, regrets, or even past successes, it can be incredibly hard to see the opportunities and possibilities that lie right in front of you.

Remember, you can’t change what has happened. But you can learn from it.


So if you’re feeling stuck in life but want to move forward, the first step is to let go of the past.

This doesn’t mean forgetting about it altogether. It simply means acknowledging that it’s over and using it as a stepping stone towards your future.

By letting go of the past, you free up mental and emotional space to focus on the present moment. And this is where real progress starts to happen.

In mindfulness practice, we say: “be here now.” So take a deep breath, let go of the past and embrace the present moment. It’s the most powerful place for making positive changes in your life.


2) Negative self-talk

In my life, I’ve noticed that the words we use to talk about ourselves can have a significant impact on how we feel and act. Negative self-talk can be especially damaging because it reinforces our feelings of being stuck.

Here’s the deal: if you’re constantly telling yourself that you can’t do something or that you’re not good enough, you’ll start to believe it.


So why not choose a path of positive self-talk?

Start by becoming aware of your internal dialogue. Listen to the way you talk to yourself. Would you talk that way to a friend?

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If not, it’s time to change the narrative. Replace thoughts of “I can’t” with “I can”, and “I’m not” with “I am”.

Remember, the words you use shape your reality. So choose words that empower and uplift you. It’s one simple step, but it can make a world of difference when you’re trying to move forward in life.


3) Attachment to outcomes

The truth is, life is unpredictable. And that’s a scary thought for many of us.

One of the key teachings of Buddhism is the concept of non-attachment. This doesn’t mean we should lack ambition or stop setting goals. It simply means we shouldn’t tie our happiness or self-worth to the achievement of these goals.


When we’re overly attached to outcomes, we set ourselves up for disappointment. We create an image in our minds of how things “should” be, and when reality doesn’t match up, we feel stuck.

But here’s the thing: being stuck in life often comes from holding on too tightly to things that are inherently fleeting and unstable.

By practicing non-attachment, we can learn to accept life as it is, not as we wish it to be. We can learn to find happiness in the journey itself, rather than attaching it solely to the destination.

So if you’re feeling stuck, perhaps it’s time to loosen your grip. Embrace the uncertainty of life and remember that every experience, whether good or bad, is an opportunity for growth.


Acceptance is a key step in moving forward.

4) Lack of mindfulness

Here’s something many people overlook: the present moment is all we truly have. Yet, so many of us are constantly caught up in our thoughts, worries, and plans for the future that we forget to be present and live in the here and now.

This lack of mindfulness can make us feel stuck. It’s like being on autopilot, going through the motions without truly experiencing life.

Mindfulness is about paying attention to the present moment, non-judgmentally. It’s about noticing the sights, sounds, and smells around you. It’s about feeling your emotions, acknowledging them but not letting them control you.

When we are mindful, we’re more aware of our thoughts and feelings. We can notice when we’re falling into old patterns that keep us stuck and choose a different path.

So if you’re feeling stuck in life, try practicing mindfulness. Whether it’s through meditation, mindful walking, or simply taking a few moments to breathe deeply and be present, developing mindfulness can help you unstick yourself and move forward in life.

5) Being ruled by ego

In my personal journey, I’ve noticed that one of the biggest factors that can keep us feeling stuck is our ego.

Ego wants to be the center of attention, to feel superior and to constantly compare ourselves with others. And when things don’t go the way our ego wants, we feel stuck, unhappy, and dissatisfied.

In my book “Hidden Secrets of Buddhism: How To Live With Maximum Impact and Minimum Ego”, I dive deep into how our ego can lead to suffering and how Buddhism wisdom can help us manage it.

The reality is, we can’t completely eliminate our ego, but we can learn to observe it without judgment and not let it control our lives. This is a key aspect of mindfulness and a big step towards moving forward in life.

6) Resistance to change

Change is a natural part of life. In fact, it’s the only constant we have. Yet, many of us resist it because it’s uncomfortable and scary.

This resistance to change can keep us feeling stuck. We cling to the familiar, even if it’s not serving us well, because we fear the unknown.

But here’s some wisdom from both Buddhism and mindfulness practice: embracing change is key to living a fulfilled life.

Buddhism teaches us about the concept of impermanence – that all things are transient and ever-changing. When we truly understand this, we can start to let go of our resistance and flow with the changes in our lives.

Similarly, mindfulness encourages us to be present and open to whatever comes our way without judgment or resistance.

So if you’re feeling stuck in life, take a good look at your relationship with change. Are you resisting it or embracing it? 

7) Trying too hard to move forward

Now, this might seem counterintuitive. After all, if you want to move forward in life, shouldn’t you be putting in all your effort to do so?

Well, not necessarily.

In mindfulness practice, we learn the importance of balance. Yes, it’s important to have goals and to work towards them. But it’s equally important to know when to take a step back and just let things be.

When we’re trying too hard to move forward, we can end up pushing away the very things we’re striving for. We become so focused on the future that we forget to live in the present.

So if you’re feeling stuck in life, maybe it’s time to stop trying so hard.

Take a moment to just be. Breathe. Notice your surroundings. Notice how you’re feeling. Be fully present in the here and now.

Remember, progress isn’t always about pushing forward. Sometimes, it’s about knowing when to pause, reflect and simply be.

Final thoughts

So there you have it. Seven behaviors to say goodbye to if you’re feeling stuck but want to move forward.

Remember, change starts from within. By acknowledging and addressing these behaviors, you can start to unstick yourself and begin your journey towards a more fulfilling life.

For more insights on how to live with maximum impact and minimum ego, check out my book “Hidden Secrets of Buddhism: How To Live With Maximum Impact and Minimum Ego”. It delves deeper into Buddhist wisdom and mindfulness practices that can help you navigate the ups and downs of life with ease and grace.

Remember, the path forward isn’t always a straight line, but with mindfulness and self-awareness, you can navigate it with resilience and strength.

So take a deep breath, let go of what’s holding you back, and take that first step towards moving forward today.

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