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By Khalilah Starks

You have an idea! A brilliant idea! A dream that excites you! But, the way your current reality is set up…it seems impossible. Maybe it’s the sobering responsibilities of life (i.e. kids, mortgage, etc.) that’s keeping you on your current path. Maybe you get exhausted thinking about starting over when you’ve worked so hard on your current career. Maybe you’re the type of person that has to plan out every step and know how everything is going to unfold before taking action. Or maybe you just have a fear of failure. Whatever the reason, doing nothing will keep you stuck traveling down a path that is unfulfilling, unexciting and downright frustrating.

No matter what your situation is, you have the power to get unstuck. Achieving your dream may not happen overnight. But, the most important thing is that it can and will happen if you get moving. You can start to make changes today that will place you on a different path and ultimately take you to a completely different destination. I call it “Destination Career Bliss”.

Here are Four Ways to Get Unstuck Right Now:

1. Take the First Step. “You don’t have to see the whole staircase. Just take the first step.” -Martin Luther King, Jr. True story. When I started my blog, I had no idea what I was going to do with it. All I knew was that I enjoyed writing and wanted to share my opinions with more than just my family and friends. Within a few weeks of starting my blog, I landed a monthly gig on the local Morning News Show where I lived. I couldn’t believe it! I was going to be on the news! I never ever would have thought that I would land on TV. I had no formal training in TV. I had no formal degree in journalism or English. I just liked to write. But, before I knew it, I was on TV, and scared out of my mind! This leads me to my next point.

2. Realize That Fear Is a Good Thing. Words cannot describe the fear that I felt on the day that I reported to the TV station for my first morning show appearance. I was so excited the days leading up to that day. But, that morning, I was everything but excited. I secretly wished that I had never accepted the opportunity. I was terrified! As I sat on the set waiting for my segment to begin, I prayed to God, “Just get me through this and I’ll never do this again.” Ha! A funny thing happened. Once I got through my first appearance, I hungered for more! It was scary and exhilarating, at the same time. The best experience of my professional career thus far.

What I learned is that fear is natural and shouldn’t be avoided. It’s just an emotional response to something new that you’ve made a big deal in your head. That’s right, it’s all in your head. It’s not real. But, there’s something great to accomplish when you make it to the other side. You either love the experience or you hate it. But, at least you know.

3. Take it Slow. Baby steps are better than no steps at all. We live in a microwave society where everything has to happen overnight. Many of you are sitting in a vehicle that’s in park right now which isn’t going anywhere (not literally, but figuratively :-)). I was once there, so I know exactly what that feels like. Just sitting there thinking and not moving. But, here’s the thing, a car that’s going 5 mph will eventually get to its destination. It’ll take a while. But, it’ll still get there. You, on the other hand, who’s sitting in the vehicle that’s parked will stay in the same place year after year with frustration after frustration. If you would just decide to shift the gear out of park and just get moving, chances are that you’ll eventually gain the motivation and confidence to pick up the speed!

4. Surround Yourself With Positive People. I cannot emphasize this enough. Get rid of the naysayers and negative folks. These people serve no purpose, but to increase the level of doubt that you have in achieving your goals. If you can’t get rid of them (i.e. family), don’t talk about it with them. Going after your dreams takes guts and perseverance. You need positive people in your life who will reinforce your decision to go for it and be that cheerleader when your goal seems far out of reach.

I’m interested in hearing from you? If you’ve ever been stuck, I’d love to hear how you got unstuck!