3 Questions To Ask Yourself When You’re Stuck

When this happens — and it will — take a step back.

Being stuck is no fun. As an entrepreneur, I find myself navigating the endless web of business priorities because, well, “everything’s” important. Focusing on everything is appealing because you feel like you’re getting things done and remembering everything you need to, but it’s actually stifling because when you focus on everything then what you really focus on nothing.

When this happens — and it will — take a step back. Take a breather and remember the one thing, the one reason or motivation that got you to where you are, and ask yourself the following three questions to get out of being stuck and create some momentum:

1.How am I contributing to the problem?


I remember doing leadership consulting engagement for a Fortune 500 company and asking one senior leader to explain the organization’s challenges. “Nothing,” he replied, “we’ve been doing the same thing for 25 years and that’s why we’re a 12 billion dollar company.”

Uh huh. Sure. And that’s why I’m here, I suppose — to sustain complacency?

The point is, what it takes to go from a startup to a $100,000 company to a $1 million, a $10 million and a $100 million company changes. It must because the talent, resources and customer demands and opportunities change with it.


2. How might I…?

The second point is word choice. The how part of the question asks for a solution as opposed to an explanation that you would get from asking a why or what question. More important, it asks for a creative solution by using the word might, which is the third point. Might infers that a solution A) exists and B) is possible.

The final point is responsibility. “I” stresses the fact that resolving this issue — whatever it is — falls upon you and nobody else. You could also apply this to a team since a team shares the same fate (how might we…?). Whatever the context, it’s a powerful question to ask when stuck in a rut.


3. Do my current assumptions accurately predict the future?



Originally published on Forbes