How to Get Unstuck

Some ideas for moving forward, from Margaret Silf:

  • Tell God, and maybe a human friend, how you feel, and ask them to pry you away from the negative force fields, even though you really want to stay where you are, in isolation.
  • Force yourself to make contact with other people; go to town, walk around the market, make yourself a meal, phone a friend, even though you don’t feel like doing any of these things.
  • Do just one thing that needs doing (perhaps some small practical task), and then enjoy the satisfaction of having done it. Give yourself a pat on the back; then look for the next “one thing.”
  • Make a deliberate effort to reach out to the need of another person, maybe someone with similar difficulties, even though you really don’t want to know about anyone else right now.
  • Pick up a project that really fired your imagination when you were in consolation. Let it refresh you with positive energy, even though you don’t actually want to do anything at all.
  • Stay with the decisions you made, the dreams you dreamed when in consolation, even though you really feel like giving up on life.
  • Remember moments of consolation when God seemed close to you, and reenact them in your mind, even though you are tempted to dismiss them.

Inner Compass

About Jim Manney 769 Articles
Jim Manney is the author of highly praised popular books on Ignatian spirituality, including A Simple, Life-Changing Prayer (about the Daily Examen) and God Finds Us (about the Spiritual Exercises). He is the compiler/editor of An Ignatian Book of Days. His latest book is Ignatian Spirituality A to Z. He and his wife live in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

6 Comments on How to Get Unstuck

  1. The Ignatian Spirituality always help me to refocus whenever I lose sight of the path….One of my deepening desire is the knowledge when I am in consolation or in desolation. Thank you for posting this. greatly appreciate this.

  2. Re: How to get unstuck.

    Great advise i myself have been down the dark road of depression many times and every word that was written above makes so much sence, you sometimes have to force yourself to carry out any of the above advise, but it really does help and get you out of the pit that is swallowing you up, even just looking out of the window at the beauty all around you will help xxxx Monica xxxx

    • Stephen, thanks for reminding me of this! It’s so easy to let our feelings change our minds and have us run from the wonderful decisions and commitments we have made when we were in a more hopeful and confident state. Reminding ourselves that we were likely closer to the Source when they were made is important. Fear is a companion of desolation and not a good decision maker!

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