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Why do we feel stuck? This is a question that rolls around in my mind so often. I watch close friends fall into relationship traps with people who treat them as if they are disposable, and yet they stay. I see family members disregard their unfortunate circumstances of where they’re ‘meant to be,’ and take no steps to better their situations. I see strangers drowning in self-doubt, self-hatred, and yet, do nothing to look upon themselves with love. And when I look to my own heart, I see fear.
Why do we allow ourselves to stay with people, in place where we are not growing? Is it because we love the comfort so much, we don’t want to lose that feeling? Is it because we’re hesitant to try something new, to face change? Is it because we’ve been conditioned to think that this—dissatisfaction, empty relationships—is what we truly deserve?
Why don’t we leave what doesn’t suit us, make sense for us, or build us into the people we’re meant to be and become? What’s holding us back?
When I think about my own life, I’ve fallen into this mindset often. And maybe it’s because I want, so desperately, for a relationship to work or ‘go back to the way it used to be.’ Sound familiar? I want someone to be mine, and so I want them to change. I want them to fix what needs to be fixed. I want to change and fix myself to fit their mold. And so I settle. I stay. I keep myself in this spot where neither of us are growing, neither of us are truly happy, and neither of us are really going anywhere.
Or maybe it’s because I like the familiarity of a certain place. I love who I’ve become living in a house, a town. I’m reluctant to shed that skin I’ve worn, scared to perhaps lose who I was or become something new altogether.
Maybe I just don’t see that there’s another option, a way out, a new beginning.
Or maybe I want to leave but I don’t know how.
I don’t know where you are in all of this, whether you’ve lived in the same town all your life and want to break free, whether you’re settling for a love that is less-than-beautiful, whether you’ve convinced yourself that you have to put up with something, simply because changing it would be hard.
I don’t know if you feel like you have to stay somewhere because of a person, because of your past, because it’s the ‘right thing to do,’ or you’re scared people will disapprove if you don’t. I don’t know if you’ve made a million and one excuses already, glued your feet to the ground, told yourself lies to keep yourself stuck.
But I want you to know something—a reminder, a promise, a truth—you are not rooted to one place.
You are not forced to stay where you don’t feel you’re supposed to be. You don’t need to listen to, or abide by ‘rules’ that are only there to hold you back. You don’t need to love or accept anything that doesn’t sit right with your heart.
You are not meant to live a life you continually want to escape from.
And if that’s the kind of life you’re living, set yourself free. Let yourself bloom. Find things that make sense to you; find people who love and value you for who you are. Don’t feel like you have to fit a certain role, a certain expectation. Don’t believe your worth is dependent on whether or not you stay.
Leaving is not synonymous with quitting. Releasing what isn’t meant for you does not mean you’re giving up.
Do not live your life feeling ‘stuck,’ feeling like you must do, or say, or be something you don’t want to, just for the sake of keeping things easy, making others happy, following the rules.
Break the damn rules.
And chase the dreams written on your heart.