What to do When You Feel Stuck in Life With No Way Out

by Alexander Heyne · 248 comments

It’s easy to get stuck in life.

In fact, for most of us, it just happens. One day we just realize it.

We get that nagging feeling that “doing this, here, was not what I was meant to be doing.”  We get that nagging feeling that there’s somewhere else we should be. We dream of escaping constantly.

Life has a little bit less zing to it. Happy things don’t get us quite as happy, and sad things – wait, life is sad, we tell ourselves – so we suck it up.

We start telling our friends who are having hard times “Welcome to life. Anything you want has to be attained through struggle and warfare with life.”

“Dreams? Who can afford them.”

“At least I’m paying my bills and I have a place to live.”

“Ehh that’s only possible for a select few people.”

For most of us, we hit that “stuck/fucked” spot right when we get the first secure job. It pays us good enough so that we don’t worry, we get a good enough apartment, then a good enough spouse, then a good enough marriage. And then life is “Eh, good enough” for the rest of our lives.

Fuck good enough.

5 Ways to Tell if You’re Stuck

#1 You have less energy and couldn’t care less about anything

The most overwhelming and obvious sign is low energy and a general inability to get motivated.  Everything seems like a struggle.

You know you need to make friends but you don’t want to put in the effort.

You know you need to lose weight but you don’t want to go to the gym.

You want to learn how to cook but just can’t be bothered to.

And that basically is the essence – you just don’t care anymore. 

Everything is too much effort for you, nothing seems to get you super aroused and happy (Usually the only thing that does that is when the person gets a spouse/falls in love, etc. Which is basically their only anchor into sanity).

Underlying the signs and symptoms of depression, dullness, hollowness, don’t-give-a-fuck-ness, there is a serious lack of motivation to do anything.

#2 Everything seems impossible (even small stuff)

When you get stuck, everything is a struggle. Even if you’re off at five, and you usually play video games till midnight, you still complain about going to the gym and lack of time even though you’re getting fatter and fatter.

When you don’t have enough money for something (a vacation, an engagement ring, a new toy, a new car, etc.) you don’t have the mental energy to figure out how to earn it and pay for it. You just complain, you whine about how difficult life is and how you just wish you were earning more money.

This lack of energy and zest is closely tied in with #3

#3 You rationalize mediocre circumstances as being “just the way it is”

What does lack of energy + everything seeming impossible = ?

A chronic cynic.

“This is just the way life is.”

They become a person who has no concept outside of the brutal “realities” of life. Outside of the normal paradigm for most: suffering in a job, deadly commutes, boring leisure time, jack-shit on the weekend, and an average spouse.

When your car breaks down, you lose your job, and your wife divorces you  – all on the same day – these kind of people say stuff like “That’s life.”  It’s like their emotional intelligence has vaporized into thin air.

They are far beyond entertaining silly stuff like “dreams,” “passions,” and other stuff.  Sometimes they entertain the idea of making a big life change like moving abroad, traveling long-term, or quitting their job – but they almost never follow through.

They’ve given up.

#4 Your intuition isn’t working (you don’t feel anything)

Another symptom that you feel stuck is that you’re emotionally semi-dead.

When you ask people like this what they would rather be doing, or where they’d rather be, they just say “Anywhere but here.”

It’s like you’ve numbed yourself to reality to try and cope with it better – higher lows, and lower highs, but more consistency you tell yourself.

But here’s the problem when you’re no longer connecting with your intuition – you end up doing stupid stuff because you think you should, and not because of how it makes you feel. Like trying to increase your earning potential in a job you already hate.

#5 You get pissed off over the smallest, most inconsequential things

To me, this has always been a symptom of being stuck, or feeling trapped in the rat race. You just have to vent. You have to get that angry bitter shit out of you, so you start cursing at drivers in traffic, calling the lady in line at Walgreens a bitch, and throwing mini tantrums whenever possible.

Ever met someone who complains about traffic, kicking over the dog bowl, the new co worker, spilling their coffee, being out of shape, the dog shitting on the rug, some rude person in the coffee line, the weather, etc. etc. every day?

Complaining is the most exciting part of their day – and it’s just about the only attention they get.

There’s one thing about getting stuck though – it’s easy and will happen naturally unless you invest time into not getting stuck.

How to Get Un-Stuck

There’s one important characteristics of getting stuck.

It’s all in your head.

Ever heard stories of kids who are way bigger than their dads but are still getting beaten and abused by them?

Heard stories of genius ghetto kids that stay stuck achieving nothing because their mom called them “lousy pieces of shit that will go nowhere” ?

Know someone who has been bullied their entire lives, and still, as a grown man, won’t stand up for anything?

It’s because our minds have been trained to behave certain ways and believe certain things.

It’s like your momma always said “Stop calling your brother an idiot! Or else one day he’ll think he is one!”

And it’s kinda like that saying “If you think you can and if you think you can’t – you’re right.”

Getting unstuck is all about getting your head right.

#1 Decide you want to be writing a better story

It amazes me how many people love wallowing in their own misery. I’ve spoken with friends deep in the rat race about moving abroad for a year.

I always tell them it’s a great way to jumpstart your motivation and get some energy back.

More than one has given me the “Ehhh that sounds like a lot of work, I have an apartment, car, job… mumble…mumble…” response.

In other words, fear. Laziness. Mental laziness more than anything.

Are you honestly willing to put in the effort?  The idea of suffering and slowly dying in a life you hate has got to be worse than the pain of busting your ass to fix it.

#2 Move across the world (seriously)

Some people need a real kick in the groin to get started. And some people need a massive change of scenery, a massive transitional period, to help get them motivated again and excited about life. Scary but true.

Although I’ve previously said that quitting your job to travel won’t solve shit (regarding personal/life issues), there are fewer things that can jumpstart people’s motivation and happiness more.

When I got my first real full-time job in 2009 I had a pretty sweet gig. I worked 8:30-2:30. I made 50k a year. There was almost no commute. It was little to no stress. I knew my stuff well.

But after 9 months I felt painfully stuck and limited. Life was beginning to suck, and everyday was the same. old. routine. My friends all became boring old bastards and there wasn’t anything to talk about but gossip and bullshit.

So I made a logical decision. I moved to China! 

So it wasn’t that logical. But it wasn’t scary at all. Scary to me was sitting at a goddamn desk forever. That terrified the shit out of me, so I dropped everything and left.

The main reasons I suggest moving abroad somewhere cool are as follows:

  1. You will have the most fun you’ve ever had, meeting new people, learning a language or culture, eating new food, and traveling to new places
  2. You will no longer be stuck in a rut or daily schedule. There will be a massive amount of new information to process and new stuff to check out
  3.  It will bring you back to life — that hollow apathetic feeling about life will vaporize as soon as you step off the plane on your new adventure. Suddenly you’ll feel things again – fear, excitement, anxiety. You’ll be alive again
  4. It will jumpstart your motivation and revive your zest for life
Many travelers I’ve met either went abroad long-term because A) They’re job sucked or they couldn’t find one, or B) They just got out of a long-term relationship and needed to get out.
I honestly recommend dropping everything and going – if you’re stuck, sick and tired of everything, and want an adventure.
And no, it’s not irresponsible. No it’s not terrifying.  If you’re in a mediocre life with a mediocre job and a mediocre boyfriend/girlfriend and you’re tired of all of them, what is there to lose? You’ve already lost.
Right now also happens to be a hot time to teach English just about anywhere in the world. Many of us will also make better salaries teaching English abroad than our salaries at home even working in business or marketing companies.

If teaching over in Asia interests you there are a couple ways to find jobs:

  1. Check out the resources on Dave’s ESL Cafe. 
  2. If you’re interested in teaching in Beijing, go to Thebeijinger.com and post an ad in the Job/English teaching forum. You’ll have 15 emails in 24 hours.
  3. Japan also has a highly competitive (and highly compensated for) English teaching program called JET

#3 Downsize and kill yo debt (get un-trapped by your stuff)

Another trap that many of us put ourselves in is the following scenario:

Girl gets good job. Girl gets cool apartment. Girl has nothing to do with life since money made is in excess of monthly expenses. Girl gets bored. Girl has no hobbies.

Girl starts buying stuff (Furniture, clothes, new car). House is filled with stuff. Girl continues to work because of the credit card bills she has to pay off from her stuff. Girl is stuck.

Girl gets unhappy and want to quit job and move. Girl can’t quit job because girl owes lots of money.

There’s one thing that bothers me about young people.  The young people who fake having money.

I’ve know a guy who people assume is making “mad money” because he has a house and drives a Mercedes and he’s not 30.

Guess what – there are a lot of poor ghetto people who like looking rich too, and they drive a mercedes all while making 30k a year.

My friend the bartender can buy a new car too, but he’ll be paying it off for the next 5 years too.

It’s pretty ironic because these people give the illusion of financial freedom – more money than they need – but they’re actually way more stuck than most of us non-mercedes driving people.

What a lot of my friends call “responsibilities” are actually dumbass financial decisions where they put themselves into debt willingly.

Unless you have some life and death illness, getting rid of debt should be your #1 priority for anyone that plans on being un-stuck.

Which brings us to the last one —

#4 Understand the rat race

As soon as you get your first job you get a nice little slap in the face lesson about the rat race.

You’re stuck in the rat race when you barely make enough to get by.

It’s not really surprising that 20 somethings are obsessed with money and success, because most of us have a severe lack of money and success.

Making $25k a year and then paying for gas, a $700/month apartment, a food leaves just about $2.50 left in your checking account. That’s to buy the bullet and rent the gun.

So for the next 10 or 20 or 40 years we dutifully work our way up to a little more financial security, or in our heads that’s what we tell ourselves. But we get so stuck in paying bills mode we don’t even sit back for two seconds to think of what we really want to do.

You end up like a bunch of my friends who take the highest paying job, every time, and take certifications to increase their earning potential at jobs they already hate.

You’re also stuck when you don’t listen to #3 and your purchasing stuff and incurring debt for things like a new car or house. You’re screwing yourself (if it’s freedom you crave) because you just locked yourself into a situation where you have to be paying bills consistently to get rid of the debt.

So how do you get out?

Often, people work long hard hours at jobs they hate to earn money to buy things they don’t need, to impress people they don’t like.”

- Nigel Marsh

Getting out of the rat race basically gives you a few options. #1 Is to earn more. If you earn 50k and only spend 25k, you’ve got some leeway.

The other thing is to downsize. When I moved to China I was still making 50k, but I was making that in a 2nd world country where the standard of living meant I could pay $300 /month for a nice apartment in a university area of Beijing.

Plenty of pro athletes or famous actors end up broke because even though they make millions of dollars they’re also partying like a celebrity. Wayne Newton, Mike Tyson, Michael Vick, Evander Holyfield and many many other extremely wealthy people went broke due to moronic money allocation.

So you either earn more than you need or you downsize.

Or you create a lifestyle that permits you to spend your time how you want now. That’s kind of the point of a lifestyle business that I talk about lot, so I won’t go into a lot of detail (check out Corbett Barr’s post on Lifestyle Biz Vs. Startup).

The point is clear though: Don’t get stuck.

A generation of stuck and lost adults

The other day, someone I know was talking about her son. She told me she was starting to see him get stuck, she was starting to see less brightness in his eyes, he was looking sleepy – not physically – but sort of that soul weariness that comes from psychologically bearing some burden you don’t want to.

“I just want to shake him and say wake the fuck up! Life has so much out there for you,” she told me.

Getting stuck is easy.

It happens without you realizing it, until one day you wake up and say “how the hell did It ever end up like this… this is not where I envisioned myself. This is not the life I wanted…”

So just remember: once you’re stuck, it gets insanely hard to wake up and find that fire again unless something or someone wakes you up from the dream. For many of us, that never happens.

Books To Read That Will Help:

The defining decade by Meg Jay, is one of the best books for lost 20 (or 3o) somethings that are trying to figure out what in the hell path to take, especially if you’re looking to live an awesome, meaningful life.




Man’s Search For Meaning

Man’s search for meaning, by Viktor Frankl is a book I quoted above because it’s by far one of the best books regarding finding purpose in life. Viktor talks about how he was dying in a Nazi concentration camp, and the only thing that not only helped him to stay alive, but also find a sense of purpose while all the other people around him slowly died.









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{ 242 comments… read them below or add one }

Laura Kimball October 10, 2012 at 12:08 am

Really great points. Honestly, being “stuck” is akin to being depressed, and it’s super hard to get out out of that state of mind. Great post and ideas. Alex.


Alexander Heyne October 22, 2012 at 11:31 am

Yep, totally agree Lamiki ! The two often go hand in hand, as I unfortunately had the pleasure to find out myself ;) . It becomes a self fulfilling thing.. you feel resistance in every direction that you go and it’s almost impossible to get moving. You either have to force yourself to struggle and find, or find a way out of the slump with less resistance.


Victoria October 24, 2012 at 3:41 pm

Having got ‘stuck’ in my twenties, I can totally relate to this post and whilst I didn’t need to move abroad to get unstuck, I did make some major changes to my life. Along with getting rid of debt, I’d say that letting go of my ‘status anxiety’ was one of the biggest factors in getting unstuck – I stopped comparing myself to other people (where they got their degree, what job/car/house they had etc) and started living life on my own terms. I’d choose happiness over success any day!


Alexander Heyne October 25, 2012 at 4:22 pm

Hey Victoria —

Haha I hear that! I’ve had to do the same myself. It’s easy to get caught comparing yourself to the Jones’ especially when most of our parents encourage that.. they’ll tell us stuff like “look at John, he’s making it, he moved out, he’s making a good income.” A lot of parents actually encourage that competitive behavior which blows my mind.

I think that’s some wise advice and it hits us all some day.. ultimately you only look at yourself int he mirror at the end of the day. So what’s the point in comparing anyway?


Mia November 25, 2012 at 2:52 pm

Great post! But what about people who live in third world countries? I don’t have a degree yet and so I can’t apply to any ESL programs abroad which is a major c***block (in the professional/academic/learning sense) plus these programs require one to be a native English speaker. My English is quite good in fact its almost native because I’ve always studied at English medium schools and my accent is good too, and I’m also learning Japanese, Korean and Mandarin so whenever I thought of applying for an esl thing for Korea, Japan or China I would never meet the criteria which sucks big time.


Alexander Heyne November 30, 2012 at 10:49 am

Hey Mia —

I think that most of my writing will make sense to people in a similar situation as myself, and sometimes in the same socioeconomic status. Yeah sometimes the english programs won’t take you, even if your English is perfect, just because ytou aren’t a native speaker. Is there any way for you to get a scholarship to study abroad?

Also — I suggest trying to apply anyway and ignoring the criteria. If they don’t “believe” you, have a skype conversation with them to show them how good your English is (it looks perfect on paper to me). People always get around criteria and qualifications anyway by using connections, so shoot me an email if you do want to study in either China or Korea – I have connections in both countries.


Mia March 12, 2013 at 4:01 pm

Thanks I will surely try do that. I love your blogs, keep milking!!!

laurence March 8, 2013 at 1:08 pm

Wow my situation is quite similar to yours Mia, I’m a native french speaker who prefers to express herself in english. I’m learning japanese, mandarin and korean, and I don’t have a degree. I found out that it’s perfectly possible to go to these countries to learn even if you don’t qualify for the programs, perhaps by getting a more menial kind of job that won’t pay as much but will be a great learning opportunity. (for Japan anyways, I haven’t checked other countries yet)

The reason I’m not doing it myself is because I need to get out of debt first, I’m also considering getting a degree but that will also equal more debts…It’s not going to be an easy path but i believe it is possible.
I won’t give up and neither should you :)


Alexander Heyne March 8, 2013 at 4:20 pm


You definitely do not need qualifications to teach English in Asia (Depends where). In China, it’s all under the table, and I hate to say it, but as long as you are white and speak native English, they trust you. They also prefer if you’re American (for whatever reason).

Japan and Korea are more strict – but hey I’m sure there’s someone who can hook you up ;)

Even if you go to one of those places legit on a program, you can always teach on the side for extra cash. In China, I was actually making more than I do at my job here in America… makes you wonder why I left! Haha. Living in a 2nd or 3rd world country making a 1st world country’s income? = Gold.

Mia March 12, 2013 at 3:57 pm

Thank you so much for the encouragement Laurence! I won’t give up no matter what and I hope you too quickly get out of debt and follow your dreams because nothing is impossible!!!

elmer April 18, 2014 at 12:51 am

your talking about being stuck and your learning things you don’t need seriously man why would your learn a bunch of crap you wont ever need
your just getting stuck and one day your will realize no one gives a damn about your crap and you’ll cry all day
learn Korean Japanese and mandarin
Im in a third world country and i don’t need to learn this stuff to survive
just admit it that you want to better than everyone that’s why you learn crap you don’t need and end up forgetting about these things and cry

i know ive been their i was a nerd geek and i was my parents cunt i had soo much dreams and i worked hard for my dreams but one day they never came true and one day it all failed i regretting spending my god damn time for notthhhinggg
well yeahh


Laurence March 6, 2013 at 11:49 pm

yeah getting rid of debt is priority for me…the thing is I wonder how long I’ll have to kept working the 9 to 5 nightmare until it’s fully paid. Also I wonder IF I can continue working it.

I’ve been wanting to move abroad for while now, to Japan specifically. but debt/lack of money and a new found boyfriend are kinda getting in the way…what to do, what to do.


Alexander Heyne March 8, 2013 at 4:18 pm

Hey Laurence —

Hey man, I would suggest reading Ramit Sethi’s stuff — he’s amazing for getting people out of debt and earning more money. http://www.iwillteachyoutoberich.com/blog/

Well hey – if you’ve got a job over there, what’s holding you back? And if you’ve got a new boyfriend then it’s obviously a personal choice to stick with him, or head off to Japan.

Ciao ciao !


laurence March 12, 2013 at 4:52 pm

Thanks Alex, I’ll check that site out, but to be honest it looks a bit shady at first haha.

Thanks for your encouragment to Mia :D

By the way, there’s also possibilities in Japan to do other work than teaching english. It might not seem the best but I feel it’s the best way to learn a language when you pretty HAVE to learn it to function.

I’ve seens opportunities to work in ski or beach resorts which were interesting, you can also do volunteer work in farms and learn about eco farming. And I found restaurants that wanted to hire foreigners specificly, for exemple french speakers to work in a french restaurant.

I also suggest looking for japanese pen pals for language exchanges online, I’ve made some friends that way who are ready to let me stay for free when I visit, very useful and fun!


Alexander Heyne March 12, 2013 at 9:40 pm

Hahaha don’t worry Laurence, Ramit is legit and quite a smart (And successful guy).


Mia March 13, 2013 at 6:50 am

Yeah I’ve been flirting with the idea of doing volunteer work and working at farms as well for the past few months, it seems fun and it seems better than a home-stay because home-stay agencies charge a lot. Even though I won’t be getting paid but I will at least get lodging for free.


Matt A. March 13, 2013 at 2:40 pm

WoW! This is exactly how I feel . =(. I’m 21 and it’s a nightmare. The only difference is that I have no job (never had one), no degree (still 3 semesters to go at Business Administration School, but I hate it), and live with my parents. It’s frustrating.


Alexander Heyne March 18, 2013 at 8:20 pm

Hey Matt —

Haha don’t worry! I’ve been there too. The most important thing is to DO SOMETHING – ANYTHING. It will never change if you don’t. And yea, unfortunately when you feel stuck it is insanely hard to get anything done. Just force yourself – for example 4-6 pm every day, go talk to people you know who can help you find a job. Stick it out !


Matt A. March 27, 2013 at 10:43 am

Hi there,

I’ve decided to leave college, at least for a while, and spend the rest of the year meditating and exploring new fields. It’s not common for children to leave home before they are 25 here in Brasil, so I’m good for a few years, I guess.
Don’t worry, I’m going to do something with all the free time. =P. Music and drama keep popping up in my head and I think I’ll follow that trail for a start.
This website is great and thank you for the advice.


James Tipton April 9, 2013 at 12:34 am

I was struggling, feeling stuck, living in a tent after college. I knew I didn’t want to conform to the nine to five living. I ended up traveling across the country looking for the answer, looking for someone to guide me, have faith in me. The truth of my revolutionary turnaround, and how I made my transformation is a mind blowing experience, let me share with you my transformation. Read more about it on my website.


Allan April 29, 2013 at 12:45 am

Although I found this somewhat enlightening, it also pertains more to already attaining some sort of success. I have been out of a job making 80K yearly for 4 years now had a house a car. Now I currently make 27k a year while trying to pay off my home and car, debts on line of credit. My life has been a mess. I can’t move I can’t do anything. All that can be said is that it is stressful 24/7 for 4 years now. Sometimes there really is now way out. You can be permanently stuck.


Curious Onlooker June 22, 2014 at 12:21 pm

I’m curious to know why the author skipped over your post. While I know this is an old thread, it’s still interesting that he chose not to reply.


Alexander Heyne June 24, 2014 at 1:26 pm

Hi there – which reply?

Sigits July 14, 2014 at 5:36 pm

I think he means that you haven’t said anything to Allan:)

Yess. T May 2, 2013 at 4:39 pm

I feel the same way! I got married at 21 got my “dream job” at 22 as a Paralegal, drive a nice car but I’m not happy. I wake up everyday and say to myself “whats wrong with you” but i just can’t help to feel down. I feel like there has to be more to life … I just don’t where to start….


Alexander Heyne May 3, 2013 at 4:45 pm

Hi Yess –

Your problem is not an uncommon one for people in the 21st century. Have you read the manifesto yet? That’s a good place to start.




Rekoj May 7, 2013 at 7:50 pm

In my situation getting stuck has been my worst enemy…you hurt yourself because we feel we are at fault of what is going on and when we get in the mess we’re in we are the first to say we deserve it…this becomes something we know to do well with our selfs and before we realize it we then have victims around us, this could be the ones we care for, we hurt those who we love then keep’m away because we’re not proud of what we have become. I left my family, stood away because I thought that was the best way to help me from keeping them from getting hurt from my existence.. They never knew I lived in my car I got in to drugs; I was actually doing the best success in my life to their story of me.. My smile always fool them nevertheless they knew the truth of me having to have to go back 2009 new years eve to my home a car under a havey rain all to myself. That night was good There I share what was going on leaving my gay partner quitting my jobs just to move away and never returning to the area and not having that as an excuse to go back and see him. But having a bill compromise with him sucked because I had to keep up every month with a car payment he had co. Sing for me and my eagle wasn’t about to let him know that I was shit with out him. I had to keep up with that.. Further on the whole simed to get bigger and I simed to be alright with it but deep inside some said this ain’t me..

To get out I had to be honest…
That meant being sick of what I had been doing to myself..I felt this way because everything wasn’t what I was used to around me and that reason was because I hid myself from even who I was trying to become anyone else but me…Soon before I realize it I lost me and thought being the rebel I created was better than who I left behind..my true essence..when this happends is hard to find it again and believe me you will one day want it back and some just don’t find it anymore I saw friends who aren’t here anymore go by with out strength to get back!

Getting back means forgiving yourself first then giving yourself what you deserve and that is love..he thing for sure is hard to know what love is after this much disaster….but it all starts with the humble heart and God is the love who will help if you really are suffering.. Then strength comes and being stuck is not your problem only…..


Jack Tarangul September 6, 2014 at 6:04 pm

Maybe God can help you write mo betta. Get the hell out of here with that nonsense!


Tamara May 19, 2013 at 4:06 pm

Very nice article.
I did just what you did about 6 years ago. I met someone who lived in Australia so I just up and moved here.

It has been really exciting because I had a goal to work towards. Or multiple goals. First Perm Residency and then citizenship. Getting a good job. Getting a better job that paid insane amounts of money.

Just moved again to another state but so far I am not enjoying it that much.

We got stuck with a money pit house that we are now unloading and that in itself is a huge relief.

I am feeling stuck again or just dissatisfied or something.

I feel trapped in a career that I am not sure how to get out of. I don’t like being broke. My health has been not so great too. I’m married but he is pretty slack with work.

I have a few ideas but not sure what to do next?

I thought about going back to school and getting a degree that I always wanted.

I’m torn between doing computer science, psychology or fine arts.

I really don’t want to work in an office anymore. I’m just tired and the last gig I had got migraines most every week.

I am doing something anything each day but it is still not clicking for me?



Alexander Heyne May 22, 2013 at 11:38 am

Hi Tamara,

Which career option would give you the opportunity to not work in an office, but also provide for yourself? Which interests you the most?

I’d suggest finding the intersection of those three things.



Courtney May 22, 2013 at 5:26 am

Thank you for this article Alex.

I’ve been struggling with a type of depression/ apathy towards my life at the moment. This post has really helped me to put everything back into perspective and remember all of the joys and growth travelling has previously brought me.

It’s also refreshing to find a blog that focuses the younger generations. We need all the help/inspiration we can get!

Looking forward to reading more of your work.


Alexander Heyne May 23, 2013 at 5:02 pm

Hey Courtney,

You’re welcome, I hope it helped :)

– Alex


magnolia May 30, 2013 at 11:00 pm

firstly, sorry if my english isn’t perfect.
wouw reading your articles definitely help me, i have been taking medication for depression on and off for 4 years, and the shit that i have been though just make me feel like so bad about myself, i feel so ugly as my toes. feel stuck and i have no idea what i’m supposed to do with my life anymore. i’m 31 and a mom …i feel like running in the circle and there’s no way out. i just want to get out of this toxic relationship, this is really torturing me! i just want to move on and be happy! i have been stuck with this man who treating like i’m nothing, make me feel so ugly, i’m stuck with this toxic marriage, wish i can get out of it…


Alexander Heyne May 31, 2013 at 2:26 pm

Hi Magnolia,

So what’s keeping you in that toxic relationship?

— Alex


magnolia June 1, 2013 at 10:31 am

hi, alex. thank you for respon. thank you so much, i really appreciate it. talking to you, will help me through this nightmare. he abused me,mentally and once he choked me when i was carry my son. he keep saying that i’m already fucked up, well i guess i am f#cked up since i was 5 yo. my life is just like nightmares, well i was molested by few guys when i was 5 years old, i tried to suicide when i was 9. then finish my uni i moved to bali island, then i met this guy and we married, i thought my life would be different. first year of marriage was a hell, i did leave him so many times, but we always back together for our son. but now i’m feed up, it’s just too much, i can’t live with a man who did those shit to me, too painful. i don’t know how many times i cries this month. i just don’t know what to do anymore. in this point, i just had enough, i have this memories in my head and i can’t move on. i’m stuck, i just want to walk away from all this,u know. i’m 31 years old, i’m sure my life is not ending yet. i just want him to let me go. so i can starting my life , because to see him everyday is nightmares. i feel so ugly, feel so worthless. and reading your articles really helps me.

Caged Bird June 13, 2013 at 6:35 pm

I’m stuck in my fifties. I HATE my job, because it’s crappy and pays $30,000 a year. Luckily, I’m single with no dependents, I have no debt and only 1 credit card that I use sparingly and is mostly paid off. I have a little money in savings – a little over $3000, plus a 401K plan that presently is worth over $60,000. I have no house – I rent apartments. What the hell should I do? I’d like to move to Florida or California or ANYWHERE out of the Midwest, where I’ve lived all of my life. Any tips for me?


Alexander Heyne June 13, 2013 at 7:14 pm

Hey Caged Bird,

So what’s stopping you from moving anywhere? Why not move? Why not travel? You have nothing holding you down –

Especially when you’re solo, what’s preventing you from finding a better job, anywhere?


Precious August 17, 2015 at 9:24 pm

Prayer is the first step. Ask God to identify why you want to leave so badly, adventure, true disgust with yourself and not your surroundings or scared you haven’t lived life so you want to jump into something else.
Prayer is the second step. Once you have identified the real reason you want out………get out…….or get up and allow God to use you in your community to help others and that is so rewarding you won’t feel bad about anything.
Finally, Pray, you have more than those that have nothing. Thank God.


Caged Bird June 16, 2013 at 7:26 pm

Thank you, Alexander. Your reasoning seems obvious, but sometimes the obvious gets drowned out by worry and fear. I’m going to start planning my escape.


Adam June 25, 2013 at 8:25 pm

Lol, This just sums my life up. I’m having a very hard time getting my mind out of this depressed, lazy, and un ambitious state. I have so many aspirations . I want to do it all. I did move across the world to Thailand to teach English and it was the most exciting time I’ve ever had. I had to come back to losing the job due to appearence and couldn’t find another one so again money became an issue. Now that I am back in the states things are worse than ever for me. I can’t even count how many times I’ve stood over the edge of a cliff/building, held a knife to my wrist ,held a toaster over the bathtub or hid behind an object to jumo infront of a car. Honestly, I feel Im going to be miserable to grave.


Alexander Heyne June 28, 2013 at 10:35 am


Just remember that coming back from a trip/life like that abroad is very hard. I’ve done it multiple times and was always very unhappy after coming back. The phase will pass – and until then, you need to spend as much time as possible re-creatin your new life. For me, I had to join new clubs (an entrepreneur club, and a judo gym), I made new friends by hanging out at local cafes and going out a bit more, I started dating someone in the new place and got a new job. You really have to start investing time into building roots in your new place – I promise it gets better. Don’t give up

— Alex


Josh B June 26, 2013 at 6:41 pm

I’m 20 and I feel like this couldnt apply more to my situation, it is as if im caged by my own fear of failure and lack of direction. I feel that this advice will help me out a great deal, thank you for the post.


Alexander Heyne June 28, 2013 at 10:41 am

You’re welcome Josh !


john June 29, 2013 at 12:29 pm

hey magnolia you are not worthless or ugly. im sorry for all the terrible things that happened to you as a child and i hope you have a wonderful life. :)


Rob July 19, 2013 at 11:40 am

I just want to say that everything you said and quoted is absolutely true. I have experience that coincides with this article and would like to tell you about it and maybe a question at the end. I myself feel like there is no way out for me, and I have tried many ways to get out. Too get my point across, I feel I should start from the beginning.
I have seizures and have had them since I was 5 years old. They started because I reacted to the MMR shot and got the measles and encephalitis, which is swelling to the brain, which in turn cause brain damage and caused me to have seizures. It has been 21 years since that situation and throughout that time I have had 2 brain surgeries, changed my medication 10 different times


Rob July 19, 2013 at 11:56 am

and have not given up. While having hundreds of seizure, I still did college and got a AAS degree in diesel heavy equipment technology and a BS degree in management, but have been unable to hold a job. Mainly because I had a seizure at work and the boss said, “take a hike, I dont want to be around a seizure freak.” So in the last year, I have lost 4 jobs because of that problem and have been coming to a point in my life that I cant get out. Mainly because people are ignorant and I cant hold a job even though I am a hard worker. So at this point in time I feel like I am at a point in life where I cant get out even though I have tried everything. I dont really know which way to turn because every time I try and get ahead, something bites me in the ass and I end up loosing everything I have worked for. I just want to know your point of view on which way to get my head out of being stuck and not going anywhere in life because I cant hold a job or have multiple other problems that always bite me in the ass. Like I said, I have been trying to get out of this situation all my life, but in the end nothing has ever worked out, even though I try and stay positive and look at the bright side of things. I am at a point in life now where I need someone to point in the right direction.


Alexander Heyne July 19, 2013 at 9:55 pm

Hey Rob!

It may be difficult for you to hold a job, but just imagine if you started an internet business? What if you had no boss, no one to worry about, and no one to potentially be afraid of working with you? There’s always a creative way to find solutions.

– Alex


Jack Tarangul September 6, 2014 at 6:28 pm

I like the way you just toss out “solutions” like moving overseas and starting a business. Your “solutions” cost big money, and require many things that aren’t part of anyone I know’s reality. Boo hoo I only make 50k? People who are really stuck in it don’t have shelter or food! 50k? Pfft! I don’t have $50! Who has clean clothes? An address? A phone? A computer? Nevermind, I’ll just invent a new air-powered car, or learn to control the weather!

Lee Ying Njoo July 31, 2013 at 6:35 pm

Nice writing! I did all that; , quit my job on the spot for both reasons mentioned, moving to Beijing for 3 years. Difference was, I didn’t make 50k a year but earned same or less money than an average chinese. Teaching English was not sth I did but for everyone who did earned sweet money. Still Beijing was a blast altogether with the young poor bumbs from Europe. Life is more fun with less money. You appreciate small things. Without having a goal moving won’t work but only helps for a short time.


Alexander Heyne August 2, 2013 at 9:11 am

Haha small world! I agree it only works for a short time before you begin wondering “what’s next?”

What are you up to now?

– Alex


Tammy August 1, 2013 at 3:26 pm

This was a good thing for me to read. It really is in my head. I have felt stuck for years now and step by step its been getting better. It helps that I have a beautiful 2 year old, but my problems were my own. I need a hobby! I need to be involved in the world and love myself again. This needs to happen for myself so I can radiate positive vibes to my son and my husband. Its amazing the power we have as individuals. Its just going to take work and persistence. So, im finally taking charge of my life. I’m getting myself unstuck! :)


Alexander Heyne August 2, 2013 at 9:12 am

Awesome Tammy! Let me know how it goes :)


ImSpongebobReady August 9, 2013 at 2:53 pm

Hey man,

Well, I loved the article and your manifesto and those are just what I needed. I’m in a slump right now where I don’t have the ambition to do much of anything, I mean I’ve only been alive 21 years and nothing really excites me anymore, its like I’m an old man, who has seen it all and is now callused. I love adventuring, I worked for a harp maker one summer, I’ve hitch hiked, but I always felt I should be working towards something. Funny thing is is that because of that thinking I’ve actually been so horribly stuck/lazy/confused on what to do that I’ve done nothing I’ve wanted to for the past six months!

So going off the adage that birds of the same feather flock together, I was wondering if you knew of a website or something that has places that are non-traditional where you can go to grow and learn. I know this sounds a lot like college(:P), but I’m looking for something more off the beaten path. I search the web like Arthur looking for the Grail but I feel I’m just looking in the wrong places.

I love the adventure but I want to do it for a reason. I need a Mount Doom to my Ring, or an Oz to my yellow brick road. I’m still confused, but I’m not going to let that stop me anymore.


Alexander Heyne August 10, 2013 at 8:44 pm

Hey there –

Are you referring to job-search sites that are unconventional, or just “find your tribe” kind of sites?

– Alex


Hey August 11, 2013 at 7:49 am

I’m just a student, but I feel all the things mentioned here. How am I supposed to get “un-stuck” from my situation when I still rely on my parents for my education? And I can’t support myself?


Alexander Heyne August 12, 2013 at 11:11 am

Hi Hey,

So why not finish your education first?

– Alex


Anonymous Freak August 21, 2013 at 12:15 pm

So, I would like to share my story and hopefully manage to gain some perspective from your feedback.
I am 21 years old. I believe that I am quite intelligent and capable (in many respects) – but regardless of my capabilities, I am pretty much stuck. I have been stuck for years. In fact, I have been stuck since high school, caught in a perpetual bout of suspended animation.
Don’t get me wrong, I am not depressed. I am not lazy. On the contrary, I am highly passionate, and have a profound yearning to learn and grow… but it seems as though the trajectory of my growth is directing me nowhere.
I studied art (specialising in contemporary music) during the latter portion of high school (an ‘art school’), and I was able to attain the status of top student throughout the entire duration of my studies. I worked hard and practiced my ass off – so hard as to cause myself to suffer a clinical breakdown.
I began to hate music, having to study music. All of my teachers were sour about the industry, giving nothing but negative feedback about their lives and experiences. I developed a romantic inclination (an ‘into the wild’ type of vibe) and yearned to experience something more sublime, profound, ‘real’. I ended up attempting suicide and being institutionalized, and after pulling through joined a technical university in order to further my musical studies (I didn’t want to study music, but it was my only option – academic departments would not accept me due to my specialisation in musical subjects during high school).
I did well in university, and many of my peers seemed to respect me for my musical knowledge and ability. However, I still longed for something more, and gradually lost interest in music, getting more involved with philosophy and meditational practices. I ended up reading philosophical classics more often than I practiced my instrument or studied my course work. I came to admire Nietzsche, Zen, Deleuze, DeLanda, etc, and decided that I wanted to pursue philosophy (ultimately desiring to become a lecturer or professor).
So, after my second year of musical studies at university, I left, but was not accepted into the department of humanities (I am sorely limited by my certification). Thus, I joined a Buddhist monastery and lived a seminary student for a year (practicing meditation, studying philosophy and Chinese language, immersing myself deeply into a profound existential adventure); but my mother would sometimes call me and tell me that it scared her that I didn’t have a ‘proper’ matric, that I couldn’t get a degree, and out of fear I left the monastery to study for an academic matric through Cambridge.
I am almost done with my matric now, and am deeply in love with a wonderful partner. I have a great opportunity lined up for next year (a course in java programming, followed by a two year work contract) – but I am really uneasy.
The college I am studying through is terrible, and I am afraid that I might fail a subject, and will therefore not qualify for an exemption. Even if I do the java course (entrance into the course was based on aptitude, not qualification or experience), I will have trouble finding employment without a ‘proper’ matric.
I don’t know what to do. Its all so complicated, and there are many details that I have had to exclude from this post.
I sometimes feel like killing myself. I feel like a burden on my family. I feel hopeless and destined for perpetual failure. The worst aspect of it all is that I really love this world, I really am passionate, I really want to live and thrive (even if my lot in life turns out to be modest). I just want to be able to support myself, to not rely on my parents. That is all. I just want this shit to end. I feel that I have so much to give, but cannot find a channel to work through. I am blocked at every angle.
I cannot study what I want to. I cannot find work. I feel fucked, utterly diminished – I just don’t know what to do.
If it weren’t for my beloved, I would just ‘drop out’ and become a monk, or a homeless vagabond, or another case of suicide – but that is not what I want… I want to push through and form a part of this great confusion, this postmodern nightmare of the 21st century. I want to help people, enrich lives, enhance experience.
But, alas, I am fucked.
There is nothing here, and I don’t know what to do.

Jenna Bonnichsen September 9, 2013 at 4:46 pm

Hey Alex,

Your website is very intriguing and curious. Could I ask you what school you taught for in China? I’m interested in this opportunity, yet I don’t want to get into a horrible situation because I picked a private school with too many demands….or whatever. If you could experience living in other country again, how would you do it so that you didn’t have to teach English? I lived in Scotland for a few months while I was studying dance movement psychotherapy and it was amazingggg besides the whole graduate school part. Haha. What advice would you give me for wanting to live in another country again as soon as possible?


Alexander Heyne September 9, 2013 at 7:17 pm

Hi Jenna,

Actually I didn’t teach in China. I had about 10k saved up so I enrolled in an intensive language program to learn Chinese instead.

I would do exactly what I did – except it requires money saved. Worst comes to worst, see if you can get an in-country contact (or use linkedin) to find a “real job” and bypass the English bullshit haha.

– Alex


Student-athlete September 11, 2013 at 1:26 pm

Hey Alex,
I’m a first time reader and thought the article was great. However I have some questions regarding my situation. I am 20 years old at a university on a football scholarship. This is my second year and I would say the “rat race” showed last year but is much much worse this year. I come from a good family that does well economically, which many of my team mates were not blessed with, which has led to a great sense of guilt (but I will get to that soon). The race reached its low (current) when I was put on scout team again while nearly all of my peers were not. At this time my classes have become overwhelming. I’m in a very deep rut of football classes football classes with about 2 hours off (if not used for sleeping or studying). I have a few really good friends from the team but little to no time to hangout with them, and when I do I feel they can see the “tiredness of the soul” you mentioned. Despite the fact that I acknowledge the beauty of life, I gradually feel I am becoming more and more cynical because of my entrapment in the expectations of coaches/teachers/friends. I have a long term relationship that became became long distant when we went to different schools (4 hours away), I am still deeply in love with her yet feel that I am letting her down. It’s hard to talk on the phone until late at night due to the sleep I need to make it through the day, let alone with enthusiasm. I feel like she does not understand why I can’t do this because she is not in my position. The coaches/team constantly instill the “all in mentality”, and I see how blessed I am with the situation I was born into; how easy my life has been compared to some teammates and feel guilty for wanting to quit sometimes. If those whomhave had much harder lives can do it, I have no excuses for quitting.
A lot of the things on your list are out of reach for me without quitting and losing my scholarship (which although I feel trapped in the team, practice is enjoyable and football is my passion). I feel there is not enough of me to give to meet everyone’s expectations while keeping my own freedom. Is there any advice you can give for my situation?

I apologize for the long post and honestly just finally telling someone makes me feel a little better.

Thank you,


Alexander Heyne September 28, 2013 at 9:38 pm

Hey there –

Sorry I just missed your comment until now.

Here are my thoughts: in college, it’s not always easy to do what you want. You have less control over your life because sports (coaches) and school (teachers) largely determine it. My advice is to sit down and figure out what is truly important to you in school and in life. If what you’re doing doesn’t align with that.. it’s time to make a move. Sometimes it’s not easy and you’ve gotta push through, but don’t forget to use your brain too.

And just remember that old saying: The quickest way to make yourself miserable is to try to make everyone else happy.

Hope that helps!



marco morales September 12, 2013 at 2:01 pm

im currently lost and i want to wake up and get out of this deadly cycle, could anyone help me more like on a one on one helping? i want that fire to burn again so if thers anybody willing to help me out and get out of this state im in, please feel free to help me out , thanks. :)
-marco morales


Alexander Heyne September 13, 2013 at 9:28 am

Hey Marco –

Well let me ask you this – what’s one thing you want to change? Is it your job? Your friends? Something else? Being specific has a remarkable way of making it a lot easier to change.

– Alex


Sally October 24, 2013 at 1:03 am

This is crazy you cant just change your life. I tried and it left me unemployed and on the verge of homelessness. It is unfortunate , but the life lesson for me is stick to what you know and don’t take risks. If I had listened to common sense I wouldn’t be in the dead end that I created.


Alexander Heyne October 24, 2013 at 4:13 pm

You can’t just change your life? Do you really believe that? Just because it left you unemployed and almost homeless doesn’t mean you can’t. There are thousands and millions of other people that do change their life… and succeed.

“Stick to what you know and don’t take risks.” What an unfortunate life plan.


Dale February 24, 2014 at 6:23 pm

People shouldn’t be so quick to discredit Sally’s advice. I too tried to change my boring office life and it left me unemployed, holes in resume, shitty references, and having to move back home. I hate to say it, but common sense is recommended – find a lucrative path and stay on it. Invest your money in high-return ETFs (start with vanguard if you have no idea what I just said).

Following your curiosity and passion is something to do after you’re financially independent, not before. Pains you to hear that? Yeah, me too. Meee too.


Alexander Heyne February 27, 2014 at 6:33 pm

No, dale, I completely agree.

I have a “safe secure day job” and then come home every night to another 3 hours of my passion, and I’m building that business. IMHO it’s worth it for some people to follow the safety and security route first so there’s less to worry about. Stress makes you make dumb decisions.

Jessica Lovejoy October 27, 2013 at 2:42 am

Great article. Thank you for sharing. Sometimes it helps simply to read that a person like myself is not alone in this struggle.

I know I’m luckier than many other recent grads my age. A lot of the scenarios you painted in this post IS my life. It’s comfortable and I should be happy with that. But it’s not enough.

I have a decent job. It’s in my field and doesn’t pay great, but I can afford to pay rent. So I’ve told myself that’s enough for now. But it’s been almost two years like this.

Tonight I woke up randomly with my heart beating fast that for the first time that my life, I may forever be stuck in this rut. So glad I found this post. It really made me “wake up” in a way.


Alexander Heyne November 3, 2013 at 3:53 am

Hi Jessica,

Sounds a lot like your intuition kickin in! So what’s next for you? What do you know you need to do, no matter how scary, difficult or ugly?


HJ October 27, 2013 at 5:27 pm

I think y0u should add “psychotherapy” to one of your possible solutions.


Ian November 12, 2013 at 9:47 pm

Well I’m 50 , married 25 years , male , two kids with one in university and one 17 year old almost at university . I work out 6 to 9 hours a week , play ice hockey when I can and can still out skate most 25 year olds at the top of their game .
I have a hard time looking at my loud mouth out of shape and vulgar spewing wife let alone touch her . ( I die inside every time an attractive woman smiles at me)
I have a decent job that offers 8 weeks holidays a year and pays about $150,000.
The hours are longer than I like and comprise of nights and weekends but that’s the deal and the work is good and fulfilling at times .
I am very social .
Currently I would say I have zero friends ! Zero people I could call to go for a drink or conversation . My work hours just won’t allow me the same social time off as most of the rest of the world !
I am depended on to finance educations and maintain a home , I’m not moving to china to teach !
My background is in business and I have had many successful investments but my work is oil refining . I have the golden handcuffs and the golden parachute ! I’m not leaving the company at this stage of life
I travel to Mexico twice a year and the east coast every summer for a few weeks .
So why is it that nothing matters anymore ?
No more goals , no passion to Persue , except for one thing ! Love!
To truly share magic with a lady that adores me as much as I do her .
But my achillies heal is my health . For as much as I am in shape with cardio vascular I have the levels of testosterone lower than a 70 year old and the pharmacuidical replacements aren’t working ( 5 years now) . I suffer from ED due to a genetic deviation that has taken my normal high cholesterol and turned it into plaque again higher than a 70 year old !
Sports injuries are adding up and osteoarthritis has captured my right hip , locking it up at least 10 times a day . Pain from a torn rotator cuff and torn bicep tendon are constant companions and the non alcoholic fatty liver and now crohns disease is another reminder that I’m not 20 .
Oh and Viagra no longer works so I try cialas once a day which is decent so far !
I have the things money can buy and I get the time to enjoy it albeit alone or with a woman that reminds me more of Roseanne Barr than the girl I married !
So what do I want ? Well I did fall in love with a woman 10 years ago . We were of the same heart and mind and it was emotionally and spiritually the best life I ever knew !
We didn’t have sex , we didn’t need to , but I wish now that we had . I loved her and she loved me but I told her I wanted her to find a man younger than herself , a man that would healthy and fun for her lifetime .
It was devastating but I could nt break up the family so I let her go !
14 years and I still feel it every day .
She did find a younger man and they have been together for six years .
I don’t swear or drink or do drugs . I try to be the best I can and do my best !
I give money to people on the street and people in line at the coffee shop !
I have nothing to live for and no passion in my soul without a woman to love and cherish !
I can’t just leave and I can’t be “alive ” in this life !
Address this one , its not like your example !


Alexander Heyne December 16, 2013 at 12:00 pm

Hi Ian,

Is it love you’re really looking for, or a meaningful life?


Karolina November 14, 2013 at 8:51 am

Hi i am 21 completed my matric 2010 and m stuck @ home with no job and my parent cant afford to pay for my further studies, i am confused i dont know what to do


Zayn Peerally November 16, 2013 at 4:18 am

I am a teenager, actually, but this post helped me a lot, thanks


Zayn Peerally November 16, 2013 at 4:43 am

I feel quite lonely and very bored with my life and my parents dont understand what im going through they keep telling me thats just youth, teenage then everything is gonna be ok as if they didnt give a damn and this really enrages me, they supply basic needs but not my emotional needs. I have great difficulty in socializing with others of my age. i keep comparing myself with others.i do sports a bit. How to make life more fun. I know you will help. thanks.


Terry January 7, 2014 at 4:40 am

Zayn, I’m sure your parents do care, but they might not quite understand what you are feeling inside. Are you able to sit down and explain it to them? Also, are you an Aspie (Asperger’s)? The hallmark of Asperger’s is difficulty in social relationships, especially with peers. It is a very common thing nowadays and nothing to be embarrassed about. Run a google search for Asperger’s and read the description. Many well-known, successful people are Aspies. Although it has challenges, it also has some very positive things. It is very common among engineers, so much so that some people call it “Engineer’s Syndrome.” If you are an Aspie, sometimes just knowing gives us that “Aha!” moment of understanding why we do the things we do or say the things we say. Getting evaluated by a professional in the field and obtaining a proper diagnosis (if, in fact, one is an Aspie) are very important. Best wishes to you.

Treyseph February 26, 2014 at 10:30 pm

I know I’m aspie, but not a successful one.

Zayn Peerally November 16, 2013 at 4:45 am

I feel quite lonely and very bored with my life and my parents dont understand what im going through they keep telling me thats just youth, teenage then everything is gonna be ok as if they didnt give a damn and this really enrages me, they supply basic needs but not my emotional needs. I have great difficulty in socializing with others of my age. i keep comparing myself with others.i do sports a bit. How to make life more fun. I know you will help. thanks.


Alexander Heyne December 5, 2013 at 11:48 am

Hi Zayn,

Let me ask you this: what do you enjoy doing?


caro November 23, 2013 at 10:38 am

so i jus typed on google search “move abroad escape mediocrity” and i arrived on this post. MUst say the author spoke my soul..like many of the people that have left comments below, am in a rut..its not as worse as its always been, so am confident i`ll get out and past this stage.
I have had one of the most lonesome childhoods and its done a good load of damage to my social life (assuming i have one). FOr as long as i can remember, ive feared commitment and finding myself in one of those situations that ultimately force your hand to “stay”. Even in my childhood i have never known how it is like to be carefree. Every


Bec December 14, 2013 at 9:23 pm

Your article makes a lot of good sense. I’m 25 and definitely stuck in a rut, like you say. I had a crap paying job that I hated, but I decided to quit one day when it was destroying my happiness. I went to the other side of the country to work in a completely different job, and boarded with someone there. Turns out they were somewhat of a sociopath (eek!) so I came home, and a year and a half later here I am. No job, and difficulty finding one due to a foot injury (can’t stand for long periods of time), no hobbies, no money, no social life, not really any friends, and I have a debt. Pathetic, right? I know it’s all self inflicted too. I know I need to find a job but I’m worried it will make the injury worse, and also worried I’ll end up depressed like I was last time. I know if I find a job I can then save up, rent my own place in a new city, get new scenery like you suggest, maybe meet new people, and be happy again. But whilst I *know* all of this, I don’t know how to go about doing it. I’ve taken chances before – quit my job, moved to a new place, new job, put myself out of my comfort zone – and it all went spectacularly badly. Of course I know next time it might not. But it might… So how do I get out of being ‘stuck’? It all seems like catch 22 – I don’t have any money to get out and do things, so I end up feeling bored and down then lack motivation to do things. My day is spent applying for jobs and not being successful.
I am usually a pretty positive person. But I get to a stage where nothing works, so I feel pretty shit about it. Happiness is a state of mind, but when you’re ‘stuck’ it’s hard to get out.
Sorry for rambling, but your article made so much sense to me. It just didn’t give me the ‘magic answer’ on how to get un-stuck.


Alexander Heyne December 16, 2013 at 12:03 pm


You’re right. Getting stuck is a really shitty feeling and not easy. It was hard for me.

Here is my advice: Force yourself to take some kind of action. Action is what clarifies the mind and neutralizes depression. Also, take any job you can get. Having money and your time filled throughout the day will make you significantly less stuck.

You have to do what we all have had to do: start rebuilding your life.

Get a job so you have money for now, pick up a hobby and start making new close friends, get on the road and start rebuilding. If you aren’t motivated, force yourself, and the rut will be gone in 6 months.

And read this article I wrote: http://www.pickthebrain.com/blog/3-ways-to-rebuild-your-life-when-youve-hit-rock-bottom/


Bec December 16, 2013 at 7:31 pm

“Get a job so you have money for now, pick up a hobby and start making new close friends, get on the road and start rebuilding. If you aren’t motivated, force yourself, and the rut will be gone in 6 months.”

You are right about this. But it is what I’m already doing, applying for jobs and getting no replies. I’m with recruitment agencies so I have an excellent resume and cover letter, and extensive assistance to find work. I think it’s the state of the job market, especially around here, that there are simply no jobs. I would happily move if I could (you mentioning moving to China on a whim got me inspired!), but of course you need money to do that. But at least now I feel much more motivated than I was. Now only if there were jobs to apply for…

Nikki December 30, 2013 at 9:52 am

So your article seems to describe what I’m going through. I think I’ve felt ‘stuck’ since I hit puberty! My upbringing was a bit chaotic, my father could be abusive, and my mother had awful self-esteem. I’ve grown up compulsively binging on shit food and hating myself. I suffered severe anxiety and panic attacks after a forced move to the US and 16 and had some behaviours which could be called obsessive-compulsive (always have and still do). That aside I always had this dream of ‘things getting better.’ By some miracle I got into university in the UK (I was bright but unfocused and lazy in school) but dropped out for a year after I started to feel completely overwhelmed and miserable with my life. I’m back studying now but once again I’m completely unfocused, fighting with myself to hand in some last minute attempt at assignments. I live with my partner but she’s unwell and I’m unhappy in the relationship though I’m trapped by my guilt, fear of being alone, and poor financial situation. I have gone through the odd jobs here and there and was actually enjoying my job and had something of a social life until the old overwhelming feeling came back and I just gave up out of sheer mental exhaustion. I’ve always wanted to travel and see the world but I seem to be riddled with apathy and laziness when it comes to working my way towards that goal. I spend the majority of my life in bed watching Netflix to avoid thinking about things. I don’t go around feeling sorry for myself though I’m, sure I did when I was younger. I just go around feeling either nothing or extreme irritability. I have some good days where I am almost over productive but they seem to come in short random bursts and followed by a ‘crash’. I am seeing my doctor for possible depression though I wouldn’t describe myself as melancholic and I tend to perk up if something dramatic or exceptionally good happens. I feel 90% of the time I’m selfish, lazy, and unpleasant and the other 10% I’m a glimpse of someone else. I’m scared of death so at no risk of suicide but in an ideal world I would exist as someone else. I want to appreciate what I have but I just don’t. I want to be kind and thoughtful towards others as much as possible but I’m not (not that I go out of my way to be cruel). Am I an abhorrent person or am I possibly unwell. What advice do you have that will get me out of this rut because right now I lack the means to just pack up and leave? How does one break a lifetime of bad habits without relapsing one day later? I know no one can motivate me but myself but any help would be much appreciated.


Alexander Heyne January 2, 2014 at 7:43 pm

Hey Nikki,

Let’s start with this: What do you really want from life?



preety January 4, 2014 at 7:17 am

Good piece ….. motivational. The first half I can relate to my situation. Second half I fell back to my “stuck life”……


sarah January 5, 2014 at 5:07 pm

Dude, you’re writing a blog telling people that you recommend that they move to the other side of the f* world. Most people can’t do that. The answer lies within you people, you have to find a way to “escape” and “do something” or “be something” without actually moving or quitting your job. Go to some new places, talk to new people, volunteer, go hiking, exercise, do whatever you have to do to make yourself “free”.


Alexander Heyne January 6, 2014 at 2:37 pm


Clearly it’s not for everyone. And I don’t suggest it as a long-term strategy, but sometimes taking a trip can clear your head – assuming you don’t just end up avoiding your problems once you come home.

“Most people” can’t and won’t do shit. I don’t write for most people.


Trey Dennis January 24, 2014 at 11:05 pm

Sounds like me. Here’s my story (copy and paste from yahoo answer rants)

I’m 29 graduated a gpa well below 2.7 three and 1/2 years ago in the communications (too introverted for that field, only took it because I like movies, tv, and news), has aspergers (or high functioning autistic) and can network but its very frustrating, and now will be forever stuck with jobs or future options are dead end ones or would lead to career paths that either low paying or I would be miserable doing (sales, maketing). Telemarketing is easier, but its real sleazy. My interests are movies, animals, news, and physical science. Gpa is too low and got the wrong personality and location (living alone is really tough, unless I can find a roommate I can trust) for many of those career fields, and grad school is not a good option.Trade schools seems to be aimed only people wanting to work as a mechanic, plumber, accounting, mostly rural and small jobs. Someone once suggested starting a business, but someone either needs to invent something really profitable or at least have a partner that can network really well. Right now, I work at Mazzio’s and store custodian (no interest in a management career) and the only other jobs I can lead to fields I’m not looking for. I feel like I’m doomed to one those lifeless pawns that go through existing rather than truly living (Paraphrase Braveheart).
Your article reminds of me of trip back in 2010 to the Grand Canyon and California. I had a hard time enjoying it, because I felt empty and lifeless inside. I was almost numb to any joy or excitement. And I still feel that every once in a while. I’ll take control for a while, but something comes around and it sets off in me again. I’ll be myself over my failures, and feel like I already failed the game. I sometimes get annoyed by people’s misplaced or fake sincerity, and they’ll make this absurd suggestions (dog-grooming) that just infuriates me. Or just tell what have should have done scenarios (should have thought of this while in high school or before college) that I can’t change and are not helpful at all. And don’t you have to know the country’s language to teach English there?


Alexander Heyne January 26, 2014 at 11:46 pm

Hey Trey – Nope you don’t have to know the local country’s language. And in fact, they often prefer that you don’t know the country’s language so that you can only speak in English :D


Trey Dennis January 24, 2014 at 11:22 pm

Thank you.


Alexander Heyne January 25, 2014 at 6:22 pm

Cheers Trey


Trey Dennis January 26, 2014 at 3:02 pm

I still get depressed whenever people call me smart, because it reminds of my poor academic performance. Though I tend be more book smart than street smart, I don’t have as much confidence in my mental abilities as much as I used to. Any advice to get over this feeling?


Alexander Heyne January 26, 2014 at 11:46 pm

Hey Trey,

So why do people call you smart? Clearly they see something !


Ed January 27, 2014 at 10:31 am

Whilst I really appreciate that there is a lot of truth in what you say, the future is not really ours to see. If someone says, ‘I moved to China under this set of circumstances and this happened and it was all great’ then that doesnt apply to someone else. I made a similar move a couple of years ago and ended up in Sweden from the UK, which is a very hard country to make headway if you are not Swedish. Even a washing up job is very hard to get. I am trying to dig myself out of the hole of being here and get back to the UK, and pick up where i left off because this is the best case scenario without asking my parents to bail me out at the age of 41. Its nice to think that one can do anything but I planned as much as I could and it hasnt worked out. Maybe in a few years time I will be able to break away from corporate office jobs but in the meantime one must have the self respect to look after oneself. Its not just mentally ill people that end up on the streets, we are all a lot closer to that than we think.


Alexander Heyne January 28, 2014 at 1:00 pm


You are absolutely right. “Its not just mentally ill people that end up on the streets, we are all a lot closer to that than we think.” Serious words of wisdom here.

And you’re right – you can only plan so much in life. You never know how it will go.. until it goes.


Destitute8 February 10, 2014 at 10:51 pm

There’s a much simpler way to get unstuck.
A well placed bullet through the skull. If it wasn’t so illegal, I’d start am assisted suicide business.


Violet February 12, 2014 at 11:59 pm

I’m “stuck”, and I don’t know what to do with my life. I don’t know anything. And I can’t do anything about it because I’m only 13 and my mother will never leave this horrible town.


Alexander Heyne February 13, 2014 at 8:12 pm

Hi Violet,

Why are you “stuck” – why not finish school first?


Chandan February 15, 2014 at 2:32 pm

Hi am fucking man you like me


mike February 26, 2014 at 8:08 am

Im 27 years old and im stuck. im just leaving my life backwards…i never went to college cuz i thought i was never intelectual enough for college,but i did finish high school…I had a kid rite after high school so i did the only thing thats gona give me income,getting a job..i stayed with a retail company for almost 7 years and that went to shit..after that my life just went down the crapper.. i have a part time job now that pays me shit,. im always broke,my parents bitch witch i went back to leaving with them ,my so call gf bitch,my baby mama bitch,im atleast 15,000 in debt.i have broken dreams, nothing ever goes rite life just sucks now and i tell myself things are gona get better but who am i kidding… but you just inspire me to get off my ass to look outside the box.. im glad i stumble across your web page.. i want to leave L.A. theres nothing here for me… excuse me for my bad grammar.


Alexander Heyne February 27, 2014 at 6:36 pm

Hey Mike,

“i tell myself things are gona get better but who am i kidding… ”

Forget positive self talk. Start positive self action. Action trumps talk and thought every day. Action is the path out of depression, unhappiness, poverty, frustration, confusion. Action.

For you – I would suggest hustling bigtime – start studying how to get a higher paying job, negotiate a raise, or hustle on the side and freelance for more money. That’s what I’ve been doing for extra $$$ to make ends meet.


ron March 1, 2014 at 6:14 pm

I am stuck….and no help here or anywhere online…its a joke…


Alexander Heyne March 4, 2014 at 11:02 pm

Hi Ron,

What are you specifically stuck with?


Hannah March 8, 2014 at 3:57 am

Dear Alex ,
I have a teenage daughter that I love more than anything in this world , that I would die for , that I would anything for to make her happy , and she knows that.
Now the problem is she keeps on gaining weight , and it really worrying me . She tries to lose weight but always the wrong way . I love doing yoga , but I feel so guilty even trying to be fit while she gets bigger everyday . So I am quietly piling up weight . Gym registration failed ,she didn’t even go for one day ! What is the best way to talk to teens ? If I suggest anything at all it will be automatically rejected … And I know it’s making her unhappy inside . She drinks a lot of coffee ! Lord I feel so guilty ! My happiness in my entire life has been about seeing others happy ! I don’t really need much .


Alexander Heyne March 9, 2014 at 2:31 pm

Hi Hannah,

Ask her what she really wants, and ask her what’s bothering her. There’s likely an emotional or psychological reason – and she won’t use a gym membership because it’s just “admitting” that she has an issue. I would approach her in a really non-judgmental tone and just ask, “Hey what’s up? How have you been doing?” You’ll likely see that a lot comes up.


Sadgirl March 9, 2014 at 4:07 am

Please don’t encourage people to move abroad and teach english. Those jobs are dead end one year contract jobs. And yes, you still get stuck in an 8 hour, 5 day a week rut. Sometimes you are so tired and exhausted you don’t feel like doing anything on the weekends. And you get anywhere from just 2-4 weeks off a year. So it’s not some fairytale lifestyle where you are traveling all the time and/ or having fun. Plus in places like Korea you will always be the foreigner. It can be especially hard for a single woman. You are called old when you are 30 years old. An unmarried woman at 28 and above are known as old miss or gold miss. Many Koreans are passive aggressive cruel racists and ageists. Job discrimination for teaching EFL starts as young as 35. I have definitely fell into a rut here and am
trying to get my depresses self into gear to leave next year. The apartments here are built like dungeons and Korea is a gray and depressing place overall with dark cold terrible winters. Many of the people here are miserable and if you’re an empath like me, you’ll absorb that dark mood.


Alexander Heyne March 9, 2014 at 2:28 pm

Hi Sadgirl,

I don’t. And I’ve never lived abroad to teach English.

Also, just because you are in an unfortunate situation (by your standards) doesn’t mean others have to be. 2-4 weeks off a year isn’t bad though ;) In the US you get about 10 days.


Ala March 18, 2014 at 2:30 pm

You dont think i want to do all the things that your suggesting, I DO!!! but with 0 money and 0 hope about money how the fuck am i gona do shit. This was stupid


Alexander Heyne March 20, 2014 at 9:27 am


What can you start doing to earn money on the side?


JMC March 19, 2014 at 4:36 pm

I feel like this today. We do live below our means and are on track to be debt free in about 12 years (free of my student loan debt and home mortgage). I feel like I need a sabbatical, from the demands of work and extended relatives. I love the relatives but feel pretty claustrophobic in this life and would love to bust out and move away and reinvent myself. But I have my kids whom I love so much. I stay in this grind for them, to meet their needs for stability and consistency. I think my spouse is hating the grind too. We operate pretty well as partners but I think we’d bust out in completely different geographical directions if money and children weren’t a consideration. Maybe this is a midlife crisis.


Melody Anderson March 24, 2014 at 5:20 pm

Your post really hit the spot with me. I was just lamenting to my mother (I am 47 she is 65) about how I am feeling the real need to leave this country. The rut around me is devastatingly high. How do you make the decision to go to another country with no job or degree to carry with you? What are the possibilities of finding plumber of store clerk positions? I guess that does depend on the country. May I ask….how old are you?


Alexander Heyne March 24, 2014 at 8:10 pm

Hi Melody,

It’s not for everyone – and I don’t necessarily “suggest” that as option #1, but it’s an option for sure. I’m 26. Why do you feel a real need to leave your country?


jeff raymaker April 3, 2014 at 5:16 am

I am stuck as well working at general motors but know I’m meant for more have a Cadillac cts at the age of 23 bought at 19 but still owe payments I want to leave but can’t because of bills I sometimes contemplate repossession and moving on I have great potential graduated a year early but fell into the money I was young and dumb.i have a said business in marketing g and can also speak i have been told to become a motivational speaker i hope it gets me out but I have multiple talents and envision My life a complete 180 from where I am now I’m too young to be feeling like this.i also body build and was once 300 pounds and changed my life I know I can do anything and can conquer this but it’s very hard.lord help all us going through these tribulations.i


Lexie April 10, 2014 at 5:29 pm

I’m stuck with my mum, she’s so dependant on me that I’ve forgotten how to live. I just don’t know what to do. This article has so many pointers that are relevant to me. I know that I have to move away from my mum, but I have nowhere to go. I don’t know how to get UNSTUCK.


Where do I go who shall I be April 15, 2014 at 12:54 am

I’m 31 years old, have worked the same well paying job for 6 years (the one thing I don’t like about my job is that my boss complains daily and it’s difficult to tolerate, she is awful), I live in a large city, I have hobbies (play in bands/music), have a wonderful family who lives near me, a wonderful boyfriend who also wants to move with me somewhere, a fantastic condo that is well decorated and in a cool neighborhood that if I move I could rent out furnished with a management company or via Air Bnb (so I can leave all my furnishings behind), I have almost 10K saved up, and no debt, I have a retirement fund,…

Basically I want out of this current life – for at least a year. And then I can come back to my condo if I choose to. I would love to move abroad. But I don’t want to teach English. I also don’t want to go back to school. I’ve traveled to several countries in Asia and I wasn’t in love with it enough to live there. I’ve thought about moving to the West coast too. But I have no clue where I want to go or what I will benefit from it. I want to do something new with a purpose for the future. How do I help myself figure out where I want to move? How can I get a job in a foreign company that is not teaching English? What other types of jobs are available to a foreigner who can’t speak the language? I’m not specialized in anything besides Administrative type office stuff. For example, I’m not a technician or a fabricator. My dream is to be a successful musician (by my own standards of “success” which is pretty simple to continue as an indie musician, and I’m working on it…but in the meantime, what do you advise a girl to do who doesn’t know where to go? There isn’t a particular city or country that’s calling my name, just somewhere warm and exciting that won’t just be an extended vacation? Thank you!


Alexander Heyne April 17, 2014 at 5:25 pm

How could you conduct a little experiment to find a place you might like? Maybe a 2 week stay somewhere?


Where do I go who shall I be April 21, 2014 at 9:48 pm

Such a simple reply, but really makes sense. I wouldn’t be able to do two weeks (not enough vacation days), however I could easily take a weekend plus a couple days and go to a city I’m interested in every month or so until I find the city I love. In the meantime I will keep saving with the goal of moving to a climate and city that is right for me. I guess it’s ultimately up to me to figure it out. Thanks!

Dave April 21, 2014 at 9:36 pm

I wonder what you might recommend for me, given my situation.

I’m 35, although I feel more like at most 25 mentally, emotionally, maturity-wise, etc. I have absolutely no idea what to do, and/or how to get myself out of the seemingly never-ending rut that I am in.

I, like many, went to college directly after graduating high school, because well, that is simply “what you did”, at least in my world as an 18 year old upper-middle class suburban kid at the time. I settled on a major in political science by default basically, because I knew I could not hack it as a business major, and political science seemed ‘legit’ or whatever the lame reason. I graduated from college with a B.A. in political science, interned twice in state government during college in respectable, good internship positions that I landed through a family connection, and then landed a pretty good entry-level job in government after college. However, after about just a year or less of working there, I couldn’t take it any more. It was like the movie, ‘Office Space’, only not funny. It was an office, cubicle job, and my boss was kind of a jerk, and I felt lost and trapped. At the time I was thinking a lot about trying to do something daring, take a risk, ‘follow a passion’, life is short, etc, etc. I had something of an interest in film and movies, although in reality it is nothing more that watching movies and wishing i could come up with some great story idea and become the next Speilberg. I figured I would try and pursue that somehow. Something new, something adventurous, and fun. I couldn’t stand being in that office anymore, after all, I felt like it just wasn’t for me. So after about a year or less of working in government, I quit. I went on to take a 2 month filmmaking program, and then proceeded to waste the next approximately nine years (age 23-32) or so dabbling around off and on in film/media, never really doing much of anything therein in reality. During that time I went to grad school for an M.A. in media (huge waste), I interned a few times at production companies where I fetched real employees lunch and rearranged a bookshelf, I p.a.’d on a hollywood film where my job was to take out the trash and go to stores to pick up women’s clothing for the actresses, and well, eventually, and finally, just over the past few years I have realized that I pretty much want nothing to do with film/media, and probably have never had any true interest in it other than the fact that it is not a 9-5 cubicle industry, and it allows one to nurture the illusion that you are cool, and one day may break out as a star or make a movie, etc. So, having pretty much trashed that idea, over the past few years most recently, the jobs/gigs have had have all been back to sitting on my ass 9-5 all day in an office cubicle, only this time around they have been temp jobs with less responsibility than I had in government at age 22, not to mention far far less pay and respectability, stability, etc. Now, a huge part of me wishes I had never left my government job out of college to pursue delusions of fame and fortune and happiness in the movie biz without a clue. And now, at age 35, I am stuck living at home with my parents, no social life, no good friends, no job, and no clue what to do with myself. I know that I am very reluctant to try and go back to working in an office/cube again, after several bad experiences doing that over the past few years especially. I have just been trying to figure out some out-of-the-box idea or plan, to do something new and different, even though it may or may not require me to move away from my parents, who are basically the only people i have left in my life to turn to or who support me or basically care. Don’t get me wrong, living with them for going on 1.5 years now at age 35 is not what I envisioned myself doing ever, and I am thoroughly ashamed of myself every day for still being here, not to mention depressed, but I simply do not know what to do. I have lived away from home in nyc and other places, and I never really managed to make it on my own and basically had a pretty rough time living in big cities, as I was raised in quiet, suburban areas near nature. I may be getting off point. Anyways, before I ramble on any further, I’ll stop myself. Thanks for reading. Any advice, or suggestions, etc would be much appreciated.


depressed all my life. April 23, 2014 at 10:46 am

Well for the last 3 years, I have been in a dead end relationship. the most time me and the BF spend together is when we sleep. Never thinks of me ever. been unhappy with him since we moved in together. we have a son which makes it harder. Feel like i have to be his mother instead of a partner. I want someone to treat me like a person and right. rather than just the cook/caretaker. I want to feel good about myself instead of feeling angry and hopeless all the time. I am always trying to do what is best for him and my family but i never get anything in return except more and more disappointment. recently stayed in the hospital for little under a week. had surgery done. He never though to visit me or bring me any supplies for my stay had to be told. At least my male nurse was a hotty for part of the time i was there. Felt nice to have someone smile at me again. Tired of talking to him and never getting a response continually having to ask hey are you even listening. We have a son who he don’t spend much time with either. not as much as he should. I don’t do as much as i could but i do my best. I can’t enjoy anything i used to be able to enjoy. I don’t even wanna kiss him anymore. feel like its going to lead somewhere i have no interest in going. Our apartment isn’t that great. i know i spent the better part of the last 3 years staring at the same 4 walls. I think the last time i was really happy was like 2 years ago and that was for like a day and he wasn’t even there. was out with family playing at the beach while they all visited. sad that that is the last happy memory i really have of real happiness and fun. don’t get me wrong me and my son have fun all the time its just not the same as being a kid again. (which my childhood was robbed of me) basically been depressed since i was 8 and I am 26 now. well im sure there is a shit ton more i could say but ill quit here.


Robyn April 29, 2014 at 11:46 am

Great article! I completely agree. My husband and I felt stuck and in the rat race a few years ago so sold everything, paid off all debt and moved to Hawaii intending to live off the grid. We craved a calmer, slower pace. We bought land and thought we would live in tents but neighbors complained so we built a small house.
Problem is, I went to school for a career that I knew I could do here and HATE it! Now we own land, a house, have a baby, dogs, 98 year old grandma here and are finding ourselves stuck all over again….somehow. We have no debt still but I have to work the job I hate to pay bills since it costs a ton to live here. So instead of enjoying the time off work, I find myself stressing over work and feeling trapped all over again due to cost of living. I would love to go to China or some other country that is less expensive and cultural, but my husband refuses to leave the U.S. Not sure what will happen now…


Alexander Heyne April 30, 2014 at 6:09 pm

Hi Robyn,

Maybe it’s time to change your approach then :-).


D April 29, 2014 at 12:33 pm

Agree with some points and disagree with others. Some people are intentionally held back by others. They can try their best, and the people that dont do work are the ones that get ahead. Merely because they are more liked. Its not always in your head, but outside factors you cant control. Moving the f away from what you’re used to could help though


Bruno Berchieri May 4, 2014 at 8:16 pm

I completely agree with your article. Sadly, to me, it only applies to those lucky enough to have been born in the first world.

I’m 27 years old, and through extremely misguided advice, the incompetence and absolute complacency of others, I managed to fail starting a career, went through 3 university/college courses without gaining anything meaningful (not even enough to land a junior level job) and lost everything I had overnight.

I was born in Brazil, which is a HORRIBLE place where life is dictated by fear and slave work. Forget all the lies they feed you on the telly, forget the tourist friends who spent a week here at a 5 star resort and think they learned anything about our reality – this country is a prison for everyone born here.

I speak English at a native level. In fact, I speak it better than most ‘natural’ English speakers I have met. I was living in Canada for the past 4 years. I had started a life there. I had my own car, I had a job I liked with a boss who loved me, I had a lot of friends, the best friends I’ve ever made, I was basically adopted by a friend’s mum, so it’s fair to say I even had a family there. But Canadian immigration made a mistake they refuse to admit/fix, and after I went back to Brazil to visit my mum (my dad had just passed away), they forbid me to return.

Everything I was, everything I had, everyone I loved, gone, in a day. I’m everything the standard Brazilian despises – honest, hardworking, worldly, intelligent and bisexual. But now I was dumped back here, with no prospects, no anything. I have money, plenty of it, but not enough to buy my way into the first world.

I want to start over, move to Germany and go through university again, but EVERYONE here despises me for that. They take my disgust for this corrupt cesspool as a personal insult to each of them, so overnight I have literally gone from the closest to happiness I have ever been to the furthest away I could ever be.

I have no more hope or energy – the only thing that keeps me going is hate. Hate for whatever spiritual entity of your choice has lead me to my fate. Hate for those whose incompetence and mistakes destroyed everything I had build and took away everyone I ever love. The one thing that keeps me going.

Against all odds I am really applying myself to try to be accepted into university in about a year max, but EVERYONE is not only holding me back but pushing me down.

I have considered spending time abroad but my misguided path has ensured that I have no professional skills to do so. I have considered teaching English abroad, but unless you come from a first world country or have English as your first language they are not interested. I live in a lie, a country all of you perceive as a paradise, but that those who live here know it to be hell on Earth, and therefore the civilized world wants nothing to do with me.

It’s interesting, though – the period I spent in Canada (and these opinions are coming from Canadians) I was the best and most loved employee, the lady I lived with actually told me if she had to choose she’d rather share her house with me than her own son, my friends loved me and admired ‘how much of a Canadian I was’. I kept up with politics better than they did, I respected their environment and laws better than they did. I was a better Canadian than real Canadians. My reward? Their immigration agents manufactured evidence against me, denied to even look at official documents I had proving I was in there legally and that was it – my life was over.

Why should I even try to start over when I went above and beyond what is exepcted of me and got treated like a common criminal by people too lazy to do their job? Why spent another 5 years fighting just to be accepted in your world when all people see is a slightly brown criminal trying to steal their jobs? Do what? Waste my life being a slave in Brazil so at least my own government can exploit me as opposed to some first world country?

I have come to a point where the only thought that brings me comfort is the fact that some day I am going to die. Doesn’t matter how bad things get – some day I’ll die, and it’ll all end.

So yeah, I agree with everything, an I think it’s a commendable post. I just wish more first-worlders would realize how blessed they are that they weren’t born in a slave country where the government can take everything you have, criminals roam the streets freely executing people in daylight and the greatest dream you’re allowed to have is the honour of witnessing the Brazilian squad win the World Cup.


Rob July 28, 2014 at 9:32 pm

Like Bruno, I’m a 27-year-old male from Brazil and I’ve been trying to get out of this country for at least 10 years now. I attest to everything he says. This country is, quite literally, a prison. The cities are depressing to even look at and all look the same, criminals and crackheads roam the streets freely, there is no culture worth appreciating, people are dishonest and rude and litter everywhere (including your front yard), meritocracy is non-existent, bureaucracy is a nightmare, people are brainwashed by the left-wing shenanigans from the media and academia (which keeps politicians and their cronies rich at the expense of the hard-working population), and leaving here is all but a pipe dream for the vast majority of the population.

Ultimately, the average Brazilian (anyone who’s not a millionaire) has only one basic purpose in life, and that is to be a slave to the state. You work way more hours than people in most other countries just to keep a roof above your head, for ridiculously low wages, since the government already takes a large chunk of your paycheck. Then you have the rampant taxation on just about every aspect of your existence – here, we pay taxes as if we lived in Scandinavia but receive nothing in return, as our tax money is basically intended to feed the corrupt state machine. If you want healthcare, education or safety, you need to buy it private because the public service is an absolute joke. Also, everything is far more expensive than anywhere else, and of course, since there’s little competition, the quality is very low – our beer is cat piss; our broadband is among the worst in the world; our cars wouldn’t be considered safe anywhere. I feel like laughing in the face of North Americans or Europeans when they complain about “being ripped off by the government”.

Most Brazilians my age, unless they’re married and well-off, still live with their parents. And that is not because we are lazy or mama’s boys. Most of us crave for independence but, as you can imagine, housing is simply unaffordable, even with a so-called high-paying job, as is my case. That is, unless you don’t mind living in a slum. If you’re lucky, you will be able to afford a used-up, beat-up car that will drown you in debt (not to mention taxes and fuel), even though nobody in a decent country would dare spend more than a couple grand on said piece of junk.

Our women have better luck. With basic knowledge of English and reasonably good looks, they can marry their way out of this hell hole if they can meet some lonely foreign dude who’s given up on your stuck-up, entitled feminist women. Having been born a male, I can’t afford even that.

I have come to the realization that the only way to be happy in this country is by being painfully dumb. The more knowledge you have of the reality around you, the more miserable and hopeless you feel. I don’t hate this country so much as I feel contempt for it. What I hate is the fact that I was born here, of all places.

My only word of advice is: Guys, you are blessed. You are privileged to have been born in the first world and you have every door open to you. Don’t let this go to waste. Stop complaining and do something about your lives. I’m not saying it’s easy but it is doable. If I still have hopes of improving my situation, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t.


David May 13, 2014 at 9:39 am

Hey Alexander,

Do you only respond to comments/questions that you feel like responding to?


Alexander Heyne May 13, 2014 at 4:06 pm

Hey David,

Nope, usually I respond to every one, if I didn’t it was an accident. But sometimes if you reply to my first comment ,it will approve your second comment without notifying me so I don’t see the follow up one.


Ryan May 23, 2014 at 2:43 pm

Deeply in student loan debt, credit debt and car debt make 60000 (not bad) but owe 330,000 total and maybe have 50,000 equity. I am a slave to my own making. Sit in cubicle from 9 to 5 day after day. I could really relate to this blog. I always tried to make it a point to live within my means but somehow it all got away from me and now I am really stuck. I am the person you talk about that whines and complains and everything is just so so but I am too old to move to China. Really don’t know the way out. I pray everyday that GOD shows me some path out of this misery.


Alexander Heyne May 23, 2014 at 8:58 pm

Hey Ryan,

I think YOU need to find the path out of misery – by hustle.

Why not focus on eliminating that credit card debt first?


Christopher May 28, 2014 at 7:17 pm

I feel exactly the same but mines a little differen’t I keep getting stuck in these stupid situations that i could easily have avoided. Ever since breaking up with my fiance’ i feel like my life has just been slowely getting worse until today. I just lost my job and now i have absolutely nothing. My parents don’t want to have anything to do with me, as well as my friends. I really don’t no what to do anymore I’ve been stuck in the state of Alaska for 23 years now. I’ve also suffered with a drug problem after i broke up with my ex. I’ve never told anybody this but i just don’t know what to do or say anymore.


Alexander Heyne May 29, 2014 at 10:13 am

Hey Christopher,

What would be the next step for you?

Move? Find a new job? Something else?

Just take the next tiny step possible.


Carla June 17, 2014 at 5:29 am

I ditched the 9-5 last year following a nervous breakdown and went solo , to some degree am supported by my father as I had/ have various mental health issues which make it difficult for me to function in a conventional business setting. I am really nervous all the time unless I drink small amounts of alcohol throughout the day, though I am a functioning alcoholic and rarely drunk. A few creative projects have come my way but they are just not making enough money to make ends meet , even with my extremely basic lifestyle and I fear another breakdown if I end up doing a “normal” job. I still feel stuck and also had to get rid of a partner and friends who were backstabbing me earlier this year. My dad has faith in me as he had a lot of problems when he was my age but I feel about ready to give up on myself. It’s like it’s only me and I haven’t had any physical help from anyone. One seems to have to invest so much into publicizing oneself and I haven’t the money or the time or the physical capability, I can only do what I can do, I can’t make myself into 10 people!! Like I said I am so used to the lack of help and money that I have lost all hope.


Carla June 17, 2014 at 5:51 am

Added to which I have a really bad relationship with my mother and do not want to find myself in the situation where I have to move back in with her. She actually refused to work (has/ had even worse mental health issues than me) and disses absolutely anything positive that my dad and I do, she would rather I do a supermarket job than “my own thing” just to see me “kept small” rather than going down in flames.  If you have someone likehat in the background as well as nay saying friends you have to cut/ limit contact with them, but it is still very hard to keep going on a day to day basis. I feel sure I am doing something wrong although my dad tells me I am doing nothing wrong. I think the problem is I just can’t do everything on my own and haven’t got the social connections or financial wherewithal to get people to do things for me.


vaibhs June 30, 2014 at 2:45 pm

Great post which is suggesting me..” you are getting stuck there..come out come out” ;)


Srift July 4, 2014 at 7:04 pm

Know how you all feel. I think sometimes the decisions we make are either good ones or bad ones. For example I was living with my parents, have been most of my life, and decided to move to the UK. I did for about 2 years (07-09) and experienced some of the best times I’ve had. I decided to move back to the US after a health scare and move back in with the parents. I then decided enough with the crappy jobs and enrolled in college. Well I did that for about 3 years, finishing in 2013. Unfortunately college tuition is high and found out the program I wanted just didn’t suit me. I didn’t feel strongly for it. I am single with no children and thought to myself “I really can do anything I want”. I also was racking up huge debt and decided against going to University. Im stuck at home, I lost my car to a drunk driver in 2011, and have no money, living off my parents. It really sucks. The only two options I have are either to try going to Uni (and spend another 3 years in front of a computer to earn a degree that may or may not land me a great job) or take this plane ticket I have and return back to England. I am thinking the second option to England would be the best move since I am so unhappy, depressed, and tired of the rat race here in America.


Srift July 4, 2014 at 7:05 pm

I should add I am 31.


lammy July 5, 2014 at 4:59 am

Sometimes all the trouble, anger, frustration, depression I feel disappears when I look around and look at the world. I look around, at the trees, clouds, grass, fence, street, people, doors, windows… whatever’s around me. I look at things and lose myself into appreciating their existence. I then understand that the world is great that everything between and including what God has created and humans have created is great. It’s a moment of wakefulness, it’s like knowing where I am, and what I am… just another part of this world…. soon enough this appreciation leaves me and as I go back to my work and my daily things I once again fall into this dream, a hazy dream which I call reality, where none of the things I’ve mentioned before matter, they aren’t even there, all that matters is either on my screen or in my head. It seems it’s all about satisfying needs, quickly, and the older you grow the more you need. So time goes by in this hazy world filled with all the things your mind and/or your screen can fill it up with and at some point when you become tired of everything, you think “maybe I can do something that I like, regardless of whether I will satisfy any needs or not…” and so you go on into this endless quests to figure out what you want to do in life, what you’d be happy doing, what your good at. Soon enough you run out of options and all the new options which pop out of nowhere, or just come to you after you’ve watched a movie or read some article, already come with a few “buts’” or “the truth is”… Sooner or later you end up thinking that there is no other way, that you just have to push through this muck and eventually you’ll end up doing something you love, so you start trying to improve yourself, thinking you don’t need to be doing what you love, that as long as you are the type of person you want to be, someone hardworking, dedicated, organized, goal oriented, polite, handsome, etc. that destiny will eventually deposit you where you have to be in life, doing what you can do best, helping others and being happy at what you do…. soon you are back to where you started and regardless a few enlightenments and truthful efforts to achieve that “be all that you can be” situation you end up back to where you started and……Sometimes all the trouble, anger, frustration, depression I feel disappears when I look around and look at the world. I look around, at the trees, clouds, grass, fence, street, people, doors, windows…


Kitty July 9, 2014 at 7:20 pm

Just finding being a single parent deathly. It seems to have gone on for an eternity. I’d love to drop all and go to China, go anywhere half civilised where women have freedom, would be counter productive to go somewhere they’re all wrapped up and not allowed to do anything, even drive.
There’s so much you just can’t do when you have teenagers, you have to try keep security. I’m trying for a month to go from very sparse Temping work to a permanent job here and can’t find one. I haven’t had the money to do house decorations etc. But we’re all healthy. We just have no money to do anything. I’m even finding it hard to buy shoes for my son this year. What do you do then? Sell the house or what?
I’ve noticed now that my children are 20, at college during semesters and 14 living at home, my father is becoming more needy. I really don’t think it’s fair I can go from no life, no partner, no money and rearing children to being a carer. I was hoping to have a few reward years for the trapped hardship I’ve been through. Surely it isn’t going to be Cinderella without the Ball for the rest of my life?


Alexander Heyne July 9, 2014 at 10:41 pm

Hi Kitty – I agree the solution isn’t running away or just moving to china for you.

Honestly? Read this book: http://www.amazon.com/The-Slight-Edge-Disciplines-Happiness/dp/1626340463/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1404960094&sr=8-1&keywords=the+slight+edge


Livvy479 July 10, 2014 at 10:35 am

Omg this post describes me so accurately right now. I’m 18 no job and i’ve been trying to find one for months now. All of my friends are getting jobs so easily and I feel so stuck. I don’t want to do anything at all. I can imagine my life and the way I want it but I’m not sure how to act upon it. I start college in August but right now, my summer has been horrible. I’m tired of everybody giving me the same lame advice. “Just be patient” “You’ll get a job” “It’s alright everything will work out. This is only a storm”. I just I don’t know what to do.


ufquack July 13, 2014 at 3:40 pm

““I just want to shake him and say wake the fuck up! Life has so much out there for you,” she told me.”

That’s annoying, that’s coming from a mother? What kind of mother is that? Sounds like she needs her fucking head cracked.

There may be some truths here but at the end of the day you’re just like every other “success” bullshit pusher out there with your high and mighty attitude pushing your shit why? Because you’re also stuck on this God forsaken planet.


Alexander Heyne July 14, 2014 at 4:01 pm


You didn’t answer your own question though. So why am I pushing my own shit?


bags July 14, 2014 at 2:53 pm

my parents invested lots of money for my studies just to get me married. and after marriage it seems i have lost myself. seeing this my mother feels terrible and now when i have a baby to take care. she is feeling guilty and pushing me and putting up false hope to do a job. i have zero industrial experience ..,, no chance of job … husband is emotionally non supportive but take care of expenses .. for that i have to hear every now and then.. even small raise in expenses give him an opportunity to tatter my self respect….. i am stuck cant break out cant give in… i feel happy only when with my daughter…


Just Jools July 15, 2014 at 7:06 pm

I’ve done moving abroad and lived for 4 years as an English teacher, it was great but I didn’t make that much money and when I did come back I had nothing, had to start again and that took 3 years – 2 unemployed and 1 year studying a masters. 5 years later I like my job, but don’t care much for my country, the city and the commute and still crave the adventures and life I had abroad in East Asia. I could easily run away again but it isn’t so easy to build a life in another country and earn good money as you make out, you have to have some luck. I’m not saying it’s not not possible, I am just being sensible now and waiting for the right time and opportunity, and while I’m waiting I am not interested in life much and living for the future – but it will come. The trick is living with what you have and trying to be happy. when you really crave something else. The line between being spontaneous and sensible has to be carefully tread.


Alexander Heyne July 17, 2014 at 1:00 pm

Great advice Just jools!


Kenny July 17, 2014 at 4:56 pm

I have none of those good things you describe. I have the symptoms you describe. I was raised in special education my entire life, and told my entire life that I was “mentally challenged.” Now I am 31, live with my mom, have never had a car or drivers license, never kissed a girl and went my entire time in Jr High and Highschool and never made a single friend, and have lost most of my friends since then. Have 30,000 dollars in debt with no college degree, working as a cashier at walmart making minimum wage. And on top of that my cousin just killed himself. I am a highly caring individual but I can’t see life ever improving. I know that is pessimistic but hey whatever.


Alexander Heyne July 17, 2014 at 7:00 pm

Kenny –

Of course you can make improvements. Why makes you think you can’t?


sari July 18, 2014 at 7:43 am

I have been working in a company where, initially, my efforts were unnoticed or colleagues used to take away my appreciation. I worked hard and achieved some success but nothing changed. And this jungle-rule, surviving at all or everyone costs, made me unhappy. I tried my best assuming that this is the life. But everyday become a burden for me, I felt stuck in my job and life too. So I decided to quit my job which I did. Now I am figuring out what to do next.
The 5 signs of feeling stuck I have already lived, now I have to go for the un-stuck part. I liked your idea of moving across the world and lifestyle business. May be it can help me.


Dannielle July 20, 2014 at 1:23 pm

Having stated all of that, none of these are truly “game changers” in our opinion. Some of the offers are very straightforward subscriptions to magazines or such, where you pay a meager monthly fee.


Bruno Rico July 24, 2014 at 4:45 pm

Hi My name is ‘Bruno Rico’ just want to share my experience with the world on how i got my love back and saved my marriage… I was married for 7years with 2kids and we lived happily until things started getting ugly and we had fights and arguments almost every time… it got worse at a point that she filed for divorce… I tried my best to make her change her mind & stay with me cause i loved her with all my heart and didn’t want to loose her but everything just didn’t work out…

she moved out of the house and still went ahead to file for divorce…

I pleaded and tried everything but still nothing worked. The breakthrough came when someone introduced me to this wonderful, great spell caster who eventually helped me out… I have never been a fan of things like this but just decided to try reluctantly cause I was desperate and left with no choice… He did special prayers and used roots and herbs… Within 7 days she called me and was sorry for all the emotional trauma she had cost me, moved back to the house and we continue to live happily, the kids are happy too and we are expecting our third child. I have introduced him to a lot of

couples with problems across the world and they have had good news… Just thought I should share my experience cause I strongly believe someone out there need’s it… You can email him via (oduduwaone@secretarias.com) Don’t give up just yet, the different between ‘Ordinary’ & ‘Extra-Ordinary’ is the ‘Extra’ so make extra effort to save your


Saurabh July 29, 2014 at 12:33 pm

I came to US on Student Visa.I graduate with Engineering Degree.And its lot of tough to get a job.I did the work which Engineer wont do .Very Low level.I have to move to diferent state to state to get a job so i cant settle at one place.I am looking for diiferent field in Engineering but nothing works out.I am trying everything but dont know what should i do now.Now i got the Work Visa.So i have to stick with my employer and do the work.I dont have full time job.My Employer is in conulting company so i am getting job where i get the position.So no security.Now i want to live in US but want to do freely some work which i like but i cant due to rules and regulation of US.Now i dont have energy or interest in the work.I feel like i am stuck but dont see any option?

Do you have any suggestion?Really Tired of this.


Tova August 1, 2014 at 9:16 pm

I don’t know about the solutions you’ve listed here, I mean I get that you’re only limited to the experiences that worked for you as an individual, but I personally found getting up and hauling off to another part of the globe even more limiting due to my lack of direction, and the harsh reality that the same boredom can travel with you no matter where you go, you literally cannot escape it. (not to mention a severe lack of connection when you land in a new place, you literally have to rebuild from the ground up and it is incredibly stressful!)
Lately I’ve been trying to find direction again because I worry incessantly that I will never enjoy working, not one day of my life. Lately I am stuck and have had a few bouncy moments where I was actually inspired, only to hit a brick wall once again. I don’t know what to think of it and most often I blame society as a whole, it does not support individuality as a way of life, and instead of burning out to achieve career satisfaction, I’m trying to see if it’s at all possible to find a good route for myself. Somedays, I try to believe that if I stay open to possibilities, I may just find myself pleasantly surprised. Who the hell knows anymore.


Kad August 11, 2014 at 7:25 pm

reading through your thing has given me allot of ideas thank you. a recent fail at a long term relationship that i truly thought was worth my time, now here i am almost 24 and only a GED and a few minor customer service jobs as work experience, let alone i live in a town with less than 1000 people so jobs arnt really over flowing unless you want to flip burgers (no thanks) ive checked out some school options but nothing really calls out to me, id much rather be my own boss. i know i am horribly “stuck” because after the relationship failed i realized all i had put on hold for him, for years. just to end up heart broke. and now i have no idea where to even start. i want to figure out what i want out of life but as i said, nothing really calls out to me. and ive considered things from welding to counseling, welding sounds great because its so versatile. but i am horrible at math ( math1 all through school) ive though about business management and that sounds very appealing except it feels like a conservative version of what i am capable of.
i look around at the people in my life ( just like you said not to) and im saddened that even my 16 yr old sister has her life more together than i do. job, school, bf, life goals. knows what she wants to be and do with her life.
im not even a 100% sure why im sending this, you just seem to be very good about helping someone screw their head back on straight lol. either way i thank you for taking your time and writing your thoughts down. they helped me.


Caleb August 12, 2014 at 5:00 pm

I’m 21 and i really hate working these “meaningless” jobs that i get forced to work. At the same time i haven’t worked up the courage to get into school or improve my life.What should i do? I have been reading a lot about becoming unstuck but nothing seems to help me out and i continuously keep wanting to move but i have medical debts and recently quit my job which made me lose my apartment and i also had funds being pulled out of my account for the gym and other things . So now i am -$205 in debt to my bank and everything i have done fails. makes life unbearable. every day i wake up i just want to go back to sleep. Any advice that can jump start a dead battery?


Alexander Heyne August 13, 2014 at 1:30 pm

Hey Caleb,

“At the same time i haven’t worked up the courage to get into school or improve my life.What should i do?”

You have to make a choice then. You want improvement, but you don’t want to be brave and do the work. Where does that leave you? :D You need to take some kind of action.


Abs August 23, 2014 at 3:14 pm

Hello there,

First of all, please do excuse for my English if there’s any mistakes.

Well, I’m from Sri Lanka, a small Island near India.

I finished my higher studies, got into a college to carry on my UG program but couldn’t continue for long. I finished only the first two years and wasted the rest two years by not going to college but acting at home that I used to go to. I felt pretty bored and I felt the college isolated me. I had couple of my friends who were accompanying me for the first two years but they got tranferred to US to continue their studies. So after that I went to College for like 2 semesters, but it wasn’t the same. I felt like I was a misfit and isolated. I didn’t have the enough confidence to make some new friends too and neither they did. No one was willing to talk with me. This doesn’t mean that I’m a lonely person. I have a wolfpack outside the college. But not even one person to talk to at least to get an absent notes. And the school I studied wasn’t coeducation. And I have some problems in talking to some girls generally, as I’m not used to too. I stopped going to College. And wasted my time by going to watch movies or eating food at some restaurants and will return home like I attended the college. I tried to convey my parents about my hate towards the college in an indirect manner but it wasn’t successful. And as we are not from a wealthy background my mum said to continue it in the same college as we have wasted some initial amounts in my two years of studies.

things went on like this and at a point I couldn’t tolerate any more. Even my wolfpack doesn’t know that I have been doing these. So then I tried to kill my self, but then it was too a failed attempt. But then my parents came to know about all these things and they talked to me in a manner that soothed me a lot.

I still have the facts that I was correct all this time apart from killing my self. And all the above points explains me who I am. But I really want to change my self but have no clue from where to start. I know this story could portray my image in a bad light, but it isn’t like that. I don’t know how to put the reasons and the feelings I find in my self. Can you please help me in this?


Lily August 25, 2014 at 12:11 pm

Thanks so much for writing this, it’s just what I needed to read right now!! I’m almost 20, and I feel so stuck, suffocated and trapped in my life I’ve honestly found myself considering suicide more than once. What stopped me was – sadly – not the people in my life, not my qualifications and supposed ‘potential’, not some great feeling that life was worth living…but remembering what it was like before I started feeling like this. Remembering what it was like to feel alive, to have dreams, to care about something…I remembered how important all that stuff used to be to me, how determined I was never to give up on my dreams. And it made me really fucking angry, to think I might just piss my whole life away feeling bitter and miserable, when I could be living those dreams!!

So, I drew up a list of my options. As a single 19-year-old female still living with her parents, and with no real financial means to speak of, it wasn’t that long. I could a) stick in at my current 9-5 job, or find another one just like it, and probably top myself sometime in the near future from sheer despair, b) start up my own business, c) sign on for unemployment benefit, or d) go to university. The first option was out before I even half-considered it; that crummy state of affairs was at least 50% responsible for me feeling like this! The second one was out too, as I have no head for business at all. The third one was also out, as I need some kind of direction and focus in life, and unemployment benefit doesn’t pay well enough to afford me the freedom I need.

So that left university. I’d always liked studying, and had been thinking for a while about teaching as a career; I think it’s something I’d gain a lot of satisfaction from. Plus, university entails both a huge lack of responsibility, and a huge amount of holidays – both things which I think would help hugely in making me feel alive again. So, that’s what I’m gonna do – apply for uni, and just see what happens.

For me, it was really like I just hit a wall. I wasn’t gonna be getting any further towards where I wanted to go doing this job; I couldn’t stand to blow another year of my life feeling suffocated and crushed by it; what did I have to lose? I think you need to get to that point, of feeling like you really have no other options, before you’ll make a change. Being stuck in a rut can become comfortable, if you get stuck there long enough; or at least give the illusion of being comfortable. But the only way we’ll ever change anything in this life is by taking a risk, leaving our comfort zone…and who knows what we could find, on the other side of our fear? Like you, I’d rather risk it all and be happy than be guaranteed a slow, painful death living a life I hate. Sorry, didn’t mean for this to turn into some kind of rant. Shutting up now!

But thank you for your encouraging words. :)


“Most people’s deaths are a sham – there’s nothing left to die” – Charles Bukowski.


Cassandra Echecarrieta September 8, 2014 at 8:23 pm

All great advice yet im still stuck. I was dealt a very hard hand in life. Im very resilient. I am sick of living the life I am, I need a change. Im only 19, I have very little money from my parents passing away, im a single mom and did not complet school. I grew up in and out if lockup. I have struggled with addiction for all my teenage years. The place I grew up in is hopeless. I am an honest person who is willing to work hard and do anything honest to be a better mother to my son and to escape the life I live now. My dream is to leave state and find an occupation that will allow me to help others. Im ready to walk out the door and change my life. Can someone out there pkease help me before I lose myself to these streets and my addiction


Immanuel Almeida October 14, 2014 at 11:49 am

wow i have no words,this is like me taking 5 steps at once to move on and escape the negative,miserable and mediocre life im living,it feels like i have been reading your motivational words for the past 10 years but i just started 30 minutes ago,i feel so nice and beautiful inside,you guys keep doing what you doing there are allot of victims out there you can save life’s of innocent and about to get lost people,believe me you,im saved i was driving in a very wrong dark lane and you kind of bumped out of it know im in the lane that lead to happiness and success.GRACIAS AMIGOS


Plan Cul October 14, 2014 at 11:47 pm

Aw, this was an extremely good post. Spending some time and actual effort to make a top notch article… but what can I
say… I put things off a whole lot and never manage to get nearly
anything done.


Rose October 16, 2014 at 12:17 pm

This article is so on point, I’ve read it I don’t know how many times. I was randomly Googling this topic and read several articles, but yours is the best thus far. Thank you for taking the time to share your experience. It really makes a difference.


Alexander Heyne October 30, 2014 at 9:07 pm

Cheers Rose :-).


Slim60 November 5, 2014 at 11:04 am

Good points and also I liked the humour, but only one thing that I need to point to, and it is the fact that China is not 2nd world as your categorised it.
China is the 2nd economy in the world, a nuclear power, a military power , and one billion people and still doesn’t have high poverty, or high unemployment. China is 1st world by all standards and nobody can deny it.
China has the largest rate of highly educated people in the world and they achieved all that without oil nor gas and without invading other nations.


desmond attwell November 6, 2014 at 10:42 am

I need love


Alexander Heyne November 7, 2014 at 5:01 pm

We got you Desmond !


Mrsshe November 8, 2014 at 9:50 pm

I see a lot of youngsters here but what about a much older yetst in the same rotten situation. I have been to uni. I have had very successful career. I have achieved quite a lot. But I’m now as disappointed and desperate to find a way forward,Yet I can not find it. I’m in a rot, and don’t know how to get out of it. I made so many friends but one by one proved to be just associates whom I don’t want to associate with any more. They are there but so superficial that I don’t feel like talking to them, it’s a waste of time. I don’t feel old. It’s certainly not time to sit at home all the time waiting to die. Neither do I feel like adventures in new places- in this case I feel I just don’t have the energy for it. I love to do that but after a while of sitting at home, you get into a rot. I am so lost. Everyday I set reminders for tasks I should be doing, yet the day comes and goes and I haven’t done anything, I don’t see a way forward to save my life, I just don’t . I’m too old to find a new job. I certainly am too young to do flower arrangements at a church. If I knew that my death would not hurt a young niece of mine, I would rather end this rot now. How does a 60 year old go on?


Chazel Noir November 15, 2014 at 3:32 am

What a bunch of nonsense. Some people have no job, no relationship, no money and more importantly no chance on ever obtaining such a thing as the consequences of severe illness and both physical and psychological trauma due to extreme occurrences in life. It’s all in your head, is the biggest bogus ever. It’s what you make of it. You know, some of us can’t even leave their beds, and if they could, they couldn’t walk, and if they could they, ugh, nevermind. There are many chanceless people in the world; people who once were with hope and chance, yet life and society have turned their back on them. It’s all in the head, it’s all what you make of it, geez.


Scar November 16, 2014 at 10:44 pm

Hey there,

I guess you could say I’m in this situation. It’s like a discontentment that’s just eating me from the inside out…and sometimes I just want to set fire to everything and everyone in my life, to just shatter this glass cage. Mainly I feel trapped….and although it’s illogical, my mind can’t understand why I can’t just step out my front door and disappear. I have no money and plenty of dreams, but getting a job burns my blood and my dreams are becoming ghosts. Even when I force myself to try and get jobs, it’s like the discontentment and fury are printed on my skin, and no one will hire me. I am trapped by all the people that latch their bloody strings and tentacles onto me….needing me, I just want to cut all these strings and go somewhere where no one can see, know, touch or find me again. Sorry for the rant, and I guess I’m not expecting any solutions. (Btw, don’t be offended, but your comment of ‘It’s all in your head’ made me feel like smashing in the computer screen. If it’s all in my head, why is it affecting everything…it’s become a sole-focussed painful need, not just in my head…although it is true at base). I guess my problem is that I’m wanting a magical solution, because I physically feel that I cannot take another day of this suffocating life I’m in without doing something stupid…)


lorne December 2, 2014 at 1:33 pm

I was raised well and had a ton of potential.. but then I smoked Mary Jane and I died.. Been dead for 12 years of miserable existentence.. now at the age of 31 with no skills.. I’m worst then ever. I might teach english in czech for a year or so.. but is it wise too spend money (atleast 3k) to do it? I mean.. what if I blow all that money and come bac to nothing again.. I don’t know what to study for a career no more.. I was in school for web designing after high school.. but my dad let a childhood friend move in withe us. . And well he was a pothead.. wasn’t long before I tried it and I literally smoked my life away.. Jesus I should be on a depression or suicide website lol man I am a mess..


Alexander Heyne January 13, 2015 at 2:04 pm

Lorne –

First – tone down the MJ – she does that to people. Second: read this recently article here on kickstarting your life over again: http://milkthepigeon.com/2015/01/06/4-steps-turning-year-best-year-ever/


Oh please February 17, 2015 at 8:02 pm

Oh please. If you lost yourself to MJ it’s because you are a loser at heart. Quit blaming weed for your shitty life decisions. I live in a legal state where people use it like alcohol. If you ruined your life, you ruined your life. Quit blaming MJ and take some responsibility for YOUR OWN shit. You are obviously a fucking loser with or without drugs.


LCN December 6, 2014 at 3:52 am

This blog & forum is great if the reader has ANY resources to reach int, or out to. I have asked to be assessed for anything, but don’t have insurance – so no interest in them looking for a solution.
I spend 22+ hours a day in my room with en-suite bathroom. (within the rented house of my arms-length wife).
I can’t afford fuel for my broken car to visit anywhere that either wants me to be there, or I want to be. Can’t sell the car, as it’ not worth the debt remaining on it.
Sometimes I use my skills to create new things in hardware or software (40 years in technology & systems design / engineering), but then find that I have no friends or contacts any more that may like to look at them – and certainly won’t fund me getting to them. I can’t afford a bus ticket, and can’t get to the station. Government doesn’t classify me as out of work or disabled – despite the fact I haven’t worked for over two years, and can’t walk, or feel things properly (diabetic neuropathy).
I generally eat around 1.3 meals a day – comprised of the cheapest frozen meals and garlic bread/diet coke I can ‘steal’ from my wife’s workplace.
If his sounds like fun – come share – I need the social interaction & company.
I’m 6’1″ tall, 58 – look early 50s, solid but not obese in any way. Just bored shirtless with life.
p.s. the domain name stands for ‘Before I Go Crazy’ – laugh if you will.


Shana January 13, 2015 at 11:38 pm

Overall, loved the article, but Christ, did I cringe every time you used the term “ghetto”.
*whispers* Psst, we all know who you’re talking about, and it doesn’t make it any better than saying the actual word that we know you say when you rap the lyrics.


Alexander Heyne January 15, 2015 at 9:00 am
Anon January 18, 2015 at 3:39 pm

I agree with most all of this except the advice to move across the world. That’s the reason WHY I’m stuck is because I thought this big change would help add that spark back to my life and it did the opposite. It’s isolating and sad.


margot January 31, 2015 at 10:07 pm

Hi Alexander,
I’ve been reading a lot of posts on being stuck lately, but yours has been the most helpful. Thanks!
I’m in my 40’s, divorced, single, successful in not one, but two fields that both bore me – I’m a published novelist and I freelance in advertising. I live in a big city that I can’t stand. I want to move but I’m afraid that I will blow through my savings and if I leave the city. I don’t know what I would do if I moved to the country or the beach. How would I earn a living. would I be lonely. I’d have to leave my aging parents-that would make me feel guilty. I’m scared. And stuck. And irritable as hell. There’s a business I want to start but I’m a writer and don’t even know where to begin. I never, ever imagined feeling this way. I’m exhausted. And alone. Mornings are horrible.


Alexander Heyne March 6, 2015 at 5:06 pm


That’s a lot of “what if’s” and it’s not even lunch time yet :-). Thing is, you could entertain what if’s all day. How about trying something and seeing how it goes?


Beth February 5, 2015 at 5:03 am

Hi, I’ve had a very unusual & intersting job that has allowed me to travel and have many unique experiences over the past 10 years. I know it’s not the right job for me and I’m burnout on the lifestyle of constant travel and virtually no home life. I have no idea what to do next but do have several options. I have no drive or direction anymore, no motivation, little excitement. Everything feels like something else to do or just another experience. I feel rather withdrawn. Thinking makes me overwhelmed and sleepy. I sleep a lot. Yes, I can pick up and move but I’m already feeling not grounded or rooted after years of travel. I’m trying hard to get motivated again, but it only lasts for about an hour each day. Almost like I have nothing to get up for and I don’t venture out unless I have to. Good article, I just don’t know what can be done to shock my system back into an alive, moving, and thriving mode. Going back to my old job only prolongs the cycle and the depression. Getting situated and more commited seemed like a good start. I tried with the loving relationship I’m in here because there is real love shared but he’s still healing from a long relationship and not ready for full blown commitment. Do I wait around or make a move? I just feel like I’m hitting my head up against the wall wherever I’m at as far as motivation goes. I’ve always worked my ass off but I would not consider myself career driven at all. I’m much more interested in personal growth & development, relationships and helping others. Any thoughts or suggestions?


Frida Nyberg February 7, 2015 at 9:31 pm

I think that saying it’s “all in my head” is belittling, demeaning and insulting. Yet people keep saying that.

I’m almost 24, and I’ve been stuck since I was _fourteen_.
Since then, ~4 years of school where I did *nothing*, and after that, I’ve been at home every single day.

I have no education and no chance of one (not diagnosed, but it seems I have a severe depression, also I am diagnosed autistic and cannot handle the classroom environment, I just. can’t.), so I have zero chance of a job, zero chance of living off anything other than welfare.

So how can I just “pull up my roots” and go somewhere? I’ve wanted to move out of my country of birth my whole life, but without a VERY VERY good education and chance of a job (or already a LOT of money in store), you have no chance of any other country letting you stay there.

Also, I have several pets (two dogs, one cat, one parrot), and while that is “my own fault”, I simply cannot just pack up and go, even if the above did not apply. And then that’s “just” pets, other people might have a marriage and kids, they’re even more tied to commitments than me.

I don’t buy the “just change your way of thinking” that people keep touting. Some of us (actually I’d think, many of us) have real-world, tangible problems, that can’t be changed by any force of will.


Matt February 22, 2015 at 1:28 am

I am completely stuck, because I got a girl pregnant. Yeah. Deeper issue. I’m dead inside, I hate my life, and don’t care about anything.

My alternative is to force my son to live in a split family, try to pretend to be a good dad part time, and go blind on child support payments. That’s a special kind of debt because the more you earn, the more you have to pay.

Sometimes you’re just well and truly fucked.


Dennis February 24, 2015 at 8:20 pm

This is Trey Dennis. I was wondering if you cound take my first name off my previous threads.


Donut March 16, 2015 at 6:26 pm

Agreed, I cannot see a life of mediocrity and volunteered slavery where I earn pittance that allows me to just about survive. Material goods mean nothing to me, it’s all just meaningless junk that never satisfies me. I’m considering just going to a monastery and getting blissed out for the rest of my days. Screw this cultural conditioned, self-entrapment. It’s a mug’s game.


Alexander Heyne March 17, 2015 at 10:42 pm

You got it Donut!


globug April 14, 2015 at 7:48 pm

I am right there with you, Donut. Most of the time that is exactly how I feel. The degree of my discontent with my life makes me extremely restless and uncomfortable. I almost feel suffocated. I think I want to live as a minimalist and get rich on experiences. I realized the more shit I have the more money and time I have to devote to maintaining it. It’s just not worth it. Out with material crap.


cassia April 6, 2015 at 3:53 am

Hey Alex,
Thank you so much for your post. I too have been feeling really stuck. I moved back to live with my parents because of clinical depression. But my parents haven’t been very supportive of my mental disorder and have made it worse. Before stumbling on your post I kept thinking to myself how I need to just get out of my environment for a while, run to the other side of the world to see just how big this world is. I really like your suggestion of teaching English. Im already teaching English through Skype to Korean students at home even though the pay isn’t enough to feed me.

My question is because my ethnicity is Asian (but was born in Canada and speak and write fluently), does that limit my opportunity to find English teaching jobs in Asia? I’ve only finished 3 out of 4 years of Univeristy too… Will I not have a chance? Do you have any connections that would possibly accept a profile like that?


n. jones April 15, 2015 at 4:59 pm

Very raw read. You captured the American human condition (stuck-ness) very well. I relate to it 100%. And to everyone stating that they don’t believe the “all in your head theory”, you’re right. What’s in your head is your reality. So, your ststuck-ness may start in the mind but the mind is what makes your life decisions. Decisions effect destiny.

One thing that saged me from being stuck is the realization that the moment I make a decision, no matter what it is, and stop making excuses… I magically become free.


Tracey Ann Summers April 29, 2015 at 1:54 pm

Its nice and sad to here others in the same boat as I’ve found myself in, I’ve felt stuck for many year hanging on by my finger tips but I’ve got to 31yr and am toperling over the edge.
I’ve never moved and cause I don’t want to be as you say trapped in a job I hate just to afford a place I find myself only sleeping in and alone in.
All my friends have windled away cause there sick of my depression and they’ve all got partners and kids so have no time for me.
Being alone is a hard task and doing the same every day can drive you crazy.
I’ve thought about have a year in New Zeakand For a while, but being a alone woman traveler is dangerous and scary.
I feel for you all and I find it hard to understand how there are so many of us out there and yet we’re all feeling stuck and alone.


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Marc David Weintraub May 18, 2015 at 11:55 pm

Aloha from expensive and frustrating Hawaii,

I’m 60 years old/young living on Oahu (the city Island) All my life.
I got a great deal on an apartment, well that is cause I put 60K down on a place that sold for 150K so my mortgage is only $520.00 monthly with $200.00 for maintenance. My friends say I’m set….yea right!! I work a job that I do not like, friends say “just look for another job” yea right…At 60 there ain’t much for me to do..I’M STUCK!!! sometimes I can’t eat 3 meals a day, can’t afford it. I just exist, I can’t afford to fill my gas tank, I haven’t purchased new jeans for years, I only have one pair of Timberland boots that are 3 years old.
Thank GOD I have great medical insurance, sometimes I have to cancell my cell phone coverage for a month or so.
I don’t have a love life, can’t afford it. Don’t travel, can’t afford it, cancelled my cable service, yup you guessed it ,can’t afford it..WHAT the hell do I have to live for?? Well I do live in one of the most beautiful places on earth.
For me getting unstuck means downsizing, selling my place, buying a brand new Chevy van and moving to the streets, taking showers at the beach and being homeless.
OR the $2.50 bullet and the weapon to take the top of my head off.
A second job? yea right, I’m dead tired after a fulldays work now, you mean I should work my ass off and drop from exhaustion? not going to happen.
Maybe I’m just an asshole, Maybe not..
Well at least I have some nice beaches to go to when I can affored the gas to get there LAUGHING OUT LOUD IN PARADISE.

I am looking for a better job and somehow I need to stay hopeful and believe that GOD has a plan for me even if I only have maybe 25 years of life left.
Aloha Ya’ll for Oahu,Hawaii


Brandon May 22, 2015 at 1:18 pm

Just turned 30, and just now realizing I am feeling stuck. Great read and thanks for the advice.


Michael May 24, 2015 at 9:00 pm

Such BS! I can tell by the language you use and the fact that your solution to the problem seems to be to just pack up and leave the world behind, that you are not finished reaching adulthood. Sure, packing a bag and heading off to China would be an exciting adventure, but some of us are stuck in many more ways other than geography. We are in our late 40’s or 50’s, our skills have become obsolete because while we were busy working to feed a family, our new peers and managers were in school learning how to tweet and create social media pages and contributing to the local pub economy. Now, the younger generation rules the corporate world where shorts and flip flops have replaced suits and ties. Foosball tables and video games in the break rooms have replaced telephones and coffee machines. We are now too old to compete with the frustratingly obnoxious tech world in EVERY FREAKING JOB out there these days, and we are too young to retire. We have mortgages and kids in college to support. Our parents are becoming a crushing responsibility (ever tried to pay for Mom’s nursing home bills on a 50K/yr salary?). So go ahead, run off to China, meet new people, have an adventure. But get back to me in 20 years and see how that solution has solved your problems for you.


carolyn May 29, 2015 at 5:02 am

i really want to end my life because where I work I don’t make enough income to support myself. I am in deep , deep debt that I cant pay. they threat my life, call me of debt collection. there is no way I cant pay only way is to end my life. I cant sleep, I cry all the time. my debt is bad. how can person pay with a lot of deep debt. where can I get help ? no one willing help me.


Don June 23, 2015 at 1:28 pm

Great read, Alex.

“Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you gonna get” said Forrest once. I’ll be 33 in a few days, but economically I’m feeling 4 and emotionally a senior. Since my adolescence throughout my 20’s life had its perils, but somehow there was always “someone to save the day”. I grew up in a poorer country, but ended up having a chance to live and work in richer places, having a job I enjoyed in media, the company of good-looking girlfriends, knowing interesting people and the list goes on..but life being what it is – a series of intersecting lives and incidents, out of anyone’s control – after working for a number of years to the company, they didn’t support the process for residency and I was forced to go back home, living with parents, having difficulties to keep a job, little money left, ashamed, and watching my friends being successful in every way possible. The possibility of going back to the life I once had are slim, while I suffer from anxiety and not sure how to progress. How about that?
To minimize the impact I try to stay positive, exercise a little, eat well, just to find at the end of the day that it’s there in my head, it won’t go away no matter how hard I try…a battle between pride and shame.
I’m glad I found you to share my story and reading even more interesting ones.
Hopefully we can all “find our way back”.


george June 24, 2015 at 2:01 am

interesting and well written article Alex – i moved to Australia in 2009 from the UK after a bout of travelling there too, got me out of a funk.. but things have gotten stale here now (Sydney).
Im a bit Jekyll and hyde in that im a tall handsome bloke with a seemingly outgoing personality but also heavy drinker, drugger, smoker.. quite self destructive.. and this is due to life slowly turning grey..
my job is ok, $120k in the city; girlfriends have come and go, heartbreak included, but still potentially covering up that my passion for life has faded. 10 hours at a desk in Sydney is the same as in stoke on fcking trent..
i don’t know whats missing.. maybe its friends whove moved on (Sydney is a transient place), the shine of oz has faded, family and old friends are on the other side of the world, homesickness, lack of fulfilment with my job..
i cant put my finger on it.. ive tried to be grateful etc, but it doesn’t stop the cloud from forming.. i fantasise about suicide or running away from my life..
im also aware i need to fix things and moving back home is what im leaning towards.. ive no sense of connection here anymore..

i still maintain playing football, cross training etc so i have motivation in that sense, i think mine maybe a depression/heartbreak/existential thing.. i dunno..

good luck to everyone trying to find what theyre looking for



Clint June 24, 2015 at 9:06 pm

In high school I got a retail job. Took a year off after high school and kept the job. Started pre-pharmacy school. Then abruptly transferred to broadcasting school out of state. Thought TV/Film was my passion but turned out not to be true. Still graduated with an associates. Worked a couple years in more retail jobs and got my real estate license but never used it. Relocated again, worked in a hospital for awhile. Roommate turned out to be nuts + mom got sick and parents had split. Moved back home. Next two years I work in a mortgage office but get laid off. Re-enrolled in university. Mom goes downhill, I start playing in bands and getting my life insurance license but can’t find work. She passes away, I’m the executor, I handle all of her affairs, sell the house (no profit, just break even), find a small apartment and ANOTHER retail job. Now I’m 32, still in school (working to a BA in English) NO money but for bills, stuck in retail hell. I’ll have debt when I’m done with school. Any suggestions?


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Teh_Most_Hated August 18, 2015 at 9:46 pm

The powers at be run by ugly fatties with minimal IQs are making sure I can’t even hold down a job or meet someone. I’m thinking I’m gonna get what I can even if I don’t deserve it and preserve my life how I seem fit. Isn’t that the goal in life? One last think: FUCK THE POLICE OF ILLINOIS.


Rachna Popli Shah August 22, 2015 at 4:26 am

hi AH,

I was born and bred in metro cities of India, travelled the world while working with multinational companies, then at 39yrs got married to a highly placed corporate CEO and settled in a small town. Six years and a 2yr old daughter later, I am tired only looking after the family and house, people around are uneducated and backward so I can’t make friends with them. Hubby is always travelling and I feel so stuck in this stupid town…I just want to get out and get myself a job somewhere but my baby girl needs her dad too so I am just stuck. Have tried everything in the book to activate a social life but no avail. With a small baby I can’t just pack my bags and leave either. I don’t know what to do.


Jon September 10, 2015 at 10:25 pm

Move across the world? Whilst unemployed and with no money whatsoever, ye, cheers for that piece of useful advice…


Bob September 15, 2015 at 2:54 pm

I guess it’s nice to be successful. It’s definitely not something I’m accustomed to. The exact opposite is true for me. I’ve struggled with every aspect of my life from an early age. Be it school, romance, work, or family. I’m 24 now, homeless, hate my job and resent people. So much, in fact that I find every excuse to avoid speaking with people in check out lines, or making eye contact while passing by on the side walk. I can’t even talk to my coworkers. I’ve only had one meaningful relationship, with a girl who is crazier and has even lower self esteem then me. So it won’t come as a surprise that I have almost no friends. My apathy has broken up most of the relationships I’ve had. The people I still know are simply tired of helping a guy who eventually falls into the same patterns of depression and self sabotage. Quitting work when the going gets tough, etc.. I wish I could say that this time is different. That I won’t intentionally f*** this up. That I’ll stay with the job, but I can’t guarantee that to anyone, not even myself. I would love to travel and see the world, maybe teach. But that kind of ambition; for me borderlines day fantasy. Right now a quiet empty apartment and some hot food is fanciful thinking.


Derrick September 17, 2015 at 3:44 am

i dont necessarily believe in this site, because one of your “to do” list Move away, how the hell are you suppose to move away when you dont have any money? i am 30, and still living at home, with my mother, who is in ICU, and been jobless for 3 years, im also hard of hearing so i profoundly deaf, i had a job but ended up in a shitty way for me.
one was working for 4 years part time then got bumped into 3rd shift then working 1st shift all together working as part time, with 2 days off, no raise, i was promised but never did came thur, stresses me the fuck out, finally i confronted my boss, but as an asshole prick he is, didnt give a fuck, i was in a what you called a working hostile environment, and im not one of them people that would take a rule or law and use it against them, im more of an old fashion guy where i put my foot in your ass for fucking with me but since my momma raised me right, i didnt take the fool’s way, so anyway i took the case to HR and NAHHHH didnt give a fuck either, got an ulcer out of it, so i got that going for me.
after 3 years later, got a job but only for 4 months, went great, loved the job, boss man loved me thought i was a great worker, i knew my shit, very impressed with me, then had to be let go because his son wanted my job, the son that called me up and told me about this job, yea thats kind of fucked up.
now my mom had to go into surgery, now in ICU, thought of losing my mom whoo, it’ll turn your life all FUCKED UP but shes stable and i think she’ll pull through, i came to this site because im just literary fucked in life, or for some strange reason i was meant not to have a job because of the situation that going on, before my grandmother’s back has given out and i had to be there for her, for my mother,for almost a year and now my mother who is going to be recovering and i know shes going to def need me.
i have tried and tired and tried to apply for job and do this and that, on and on, and it get hard, and this list you got on here, dont think it work, because the way things are going, and i hear it everyday from random people usually old timer and old fashion guys and women, that people just dont have a fuckin clue on what they are doing, so when i think about that person’s job and im thinking, thats not that hard, i could do that. i am a very skilled person with my hands, and very good on my head, along with having common sense, i have done just about everything in construction, i have done auto work because of my granddaddy and plus i worked at a shop for 5 years and all these jobs i apply doesnt wanna hire me, for some reason i think its because im profoundly deaf, or they rather hire stupid dumbass people, but honestly i believe that God wanted me to not have a job because he knew that my grandmother would need me and now my mom is going to need me but damn, 30 years old and i aint going to have shit and i came here after i went through pages of jobs that was hiring and really nothing is out there, i’ll try anything but nothing is there, so for this site to say move away, lol i think this site is meant for people who are rich and think their life is stuck. i have tried just about everything, even disabilities, even thought thats not what i want but i got turned down because im not deaf “enough” but , my grand-paw taught me to “work hard but not too hard, have fun, pay your bills, love your family and you will have the best life you ever have.” and i try to do that, i love working, makes me feel like i accomplish something but the way this world is going, pretty shitty.
im not trying to bash this site or anything just putting my input and my situation out there so that people that are like me are not the only one who feels that way. but hope that everyone finds a way and thanks for reading and have a good day.


Scott October 8, 2015 at 8:53 pm


Really enjoyed your post and can relate on so many levels. I’m 31 and have been at my job for 7 years now. My life couldn’t be more stuck. I’ve certainly been keeping with the Jones’s and the more things I acquire for status only make me feel less hollow. I’ve always struggled with depression my whole life and I’m feeling beyond unmotivated. My surrounding’s all encourage hard work, making a family, and accepting an average life. I recently traveled to Europe and it brought so much perspective into my life. When I came back to my miserable 70 work wk job I can hardly get out of bed in the morning. I know I need a change but have so many forces keeping me put. Everybody tells me there will be a breaking point but I’m starting to wonder if that’s true for me. How do I find my break point and tell myself I need to do something for me for once in my life?


Jazmine Mayberry December 8, 2015 at 1:01 am

Life can be really rough. Circumstances aren’t always changeable. Sometimes being stuck is a mindset and other times there really is a massive pile of dog sh** on top of your head. I feel like the best way to get unstuck is to help somebody else.


Alexander Heyne December 8, 2015 at 1:14 pm

I totally agree Jazmine.


DWRI December 18, 2015 at 6:46 pm

I’m stuck right now.


0-0 January 27, 2016 at 3:43 pm

Sadly I’m still stuck for a few years because I’m a kid and I’m not allowed to go anywhere alone. Just a year till I might finally be able to drive. Still I completely agree with this, when I’m older I want to travel aswell. What annoys me is my family seems to give me that idea that I can’t do anything, it’s actually really annoying, my brother was making fun of me even today. It’s really more of a wait for me.


Ronin February 4, 2016 at 1:23 am

This really helped put things into perspective for me, I know leaving is the only thing that can give me a “boost” of motivation. But I always stayed for my “friendships” and my “relationship” only now I realized my friends and I have nothing in common and no longer share the same goal. And my girlfriend of 3 years still doesn’t really know me at all as a person. I feel like I’m a teddy bear or a trophy to her. I know what I need to do but WHY CAN’T I DO IT?? Lord please help me. I just turned 24 I cannot do this anymore


A.R. February 21, 2016 at 6:27 pm

Yea, #1 really sums it up for me. I don’t have any debt, but I don’t really have any dreams either. I don’t want to travel, I’m not sure what to do. Good read, though.


Devlin March 20, 2016 at 4:39 pm

i was abandoned at 11, lived on streets of london,had to fight hard to get off them but by age 24 had my own small crew in building firm employing 6. had 3 children going strong,age 35 got paralysed divorced lost everything car just gone so cant get to see Children, i cant stroll around the world i live in the real one you think its in the mind and try going across the world you aint got a clue you wouldnt no what to do if you ever had it bad what you say is bad is real peoples paradise, if you wanna give out advice stick to your own about stoks or the earthiest truffles you get fuckin deluded twat


Aa April 9, 2016 at 2:55 am

Hi Alex:
I stumbled at ur post just now. God u wrote it 6 years ago…..
Look I’m not that young. I’m 44 with 4 Childen a boring wife (who claims she is pregnant with her 5th), I have no debts, no major financial issues, and my job is ok -teacher- (but it has become monotonous).
The problem is I’m lonely. Im stuck with this family. I don’t want to be around my kids. I hate my wife , at the same time I like her.
She is a superficial person,
She just fits the quote below
“Often, people work long hard hours at jobs they hate to earn money to buy things they don’t need, to impress people they don’t like.”

she is still with me because of fear of condemnation of her friends whole she hates like hell (but pretends they are her best friend Infront of me).

My life is really boring. If I stay with her another 5 years I feel I will never get another chance on getting another love. My kids used to occupy my life but I have become distanced from them.
I can relate to your blog a lot. I love traveling. It rejuvenates me and if I could do it so often I wouldn’t mind.

A teaching job overseas is something I wanted todo for so long, but she doesn’t share my dreams.

She doesn’t want to leave her boring family, her boring friends, her boring life.

And she is sucking me in with her.

Please give me some advise. You had thousands of posts you may have some insight.


Alexander Heyne April 10, 2016 at 12:36 pm

ey there,

Have you had this conversation with her? I would start with that. -A


Abraham April 15, 2016 at 10:53 am

Hello there so im currently 23 years old . Software developer , im getting paid minimim at least i got a raise today though i know money wil make it easier but it wont fufill me .but at this point i dont know what wil anymore .im stuck in a small but cosy apartment .people say im a good photographer . I make plans but i lose interest easily in them after a while.i dont have energy really to try something new and im my own worst enemy . I just dont know what to do anymore . I dont know if im depressed or if my life is just unfifulled . I know i feel alone and this is a bad thing because i know when i feel like this i easily fall in love with the wrong person .just because i feel needed from them. Sometimes this idea of being happy or you know being whatever you want to be sounds like fairytales .its difficult since im really adaptable so i dont neccesairily know if i like something or am i making the best out of the sutuation.im trying to find peace within in myself because when im with people im fine but at the end of the day when im alone i have no power to deal with comfronting myself and changing my sutuation . I do not wish to complain but i just did .because i dint know what to do anymore .sometimes i think about quiting my job and figure it out after that because i know i work good under pressure because i have no choice


Homo Sapiens September 17, 2016 at 5:01 pm

Yes, I can relate with the “when I’m with people, I feel better” :) I’ve also found that I feel better when I have meaningful conversations with people like this.

Do you have anything you enjoy doing? If so, I recommend starting to do that to find some fulfillment from life. Go to an actual class or center with actual people and an actual teacher, where if you start losing interest and missing days, people will notice. I know, it’s hard. But perhaps when you are happier you will find it easier to reflect on your situation.

There’s an old saying I’ve heard many people attest to be true: It gets better. And just thinking about that, and how many people I’ve heard say that, makes me have hope and believe again.

I don’t know what to say about your job because I’m currently too young to have one, and maybe my advice isn’t too good, but I wanted to put what I did know out there, because I want you to know that someone out there does read other people’s comments, and cares, and comments about them.

Good luck, and hope you have a great day!


John May 1, 2016 at 2:11 pm

Just turned fifty, dependant keep teenage kids, single father, their mother left me in debts, parents dependant, unemployed , no savings, no hope!!

Any suggestions!!!!


Alexander Heyne May 2, 2016 at 11:53 am

Hey John –

Plenty – but first, what do you want?

Also, I disagree. There’s always hope. How easy or hard it is will be up to you.


Kay May 19, 2016 at 12:59 pm

I wish I could feel enlightened by this, but I already “stuck” myself for life when I took out way too many loans for college. I was foolish in the first place because the line of work I studied for is never going to pay me a lot of money. Now, I’m 27 with two part time jobs…one uses my degree kind of, but I’ve worked there for almost 2 years and have been passed over for full time twice. I’m never going to make enough to pay off my debt, and I feel like I’ll never retire either. I am also married and we have a house, so that furthers the debt-hole.

I guess I don’t know what I’m trying to say…I think it’s easy to start a whole new life when you’re making 50k a year and don’t have debt. But some of us weren’t lucky enough to have that path.

My husband and I just returned from a week-long trip to Vancouver, BC, and I had such a great, fulfilling time there. I’m feeling super depressed to be returning to my regular life where it feels like I’m going nowhere.


K J July 14, 2016 at 9:20 pm

I think this is very over simplified way of viewing things. Some people were born stuck shit education parents community etc etc ie no fucking chance.

The mother who said life has so much to offer …….fuck off . Maybe in your life time you were privallaged or whatever. Tell that to someone put into postitution etc. Not so simple were not all middle class or even working class.


Fuck August 16, 2016 at 7:02 pm

Get over it mother f******. ife sucks I’m 53 you go thru the s*** then you die. It’s all f****** joke


Alexander Heyne August 24, 2016 at 2:45 am

Well that’s unfortunate.


Aly August 17, 2016 at 8:00 am

I have been stuck for 4 years, every since I came home from college and never went back. For one, college was too expensive for my family all of which have lived in winston salem nc (crappy town) and are poor. Every last person in my family is poor or struggling with a job. Ever since I’ve come back In 2012 each year I get deeper and deeper into a rut…. I had a great full time job last year and was let go in may. I look at my peers who are doing so much better than me. Scored good $10/hr jobs with no college experience and I can’t even find a job that at LEAST pays $8.50…. I really feel like maybe I’m supposed to be just like my family. Poor, angry and stuck in NC forever…. I feel like my life has been a waste and I’m only 23 years old. I want outbur with no money to barely even get by I can’t achieve that. Maybe being poor is hereditary and I have to just deal with it….


Lauren September 2, 2016 at 5:03 pm


Thanks for your article. I certainly feel stuck in life at the moment. I’d love to travel around the world doing photography and journalism and I also like the sound of teaching English abroad. I just don’t get how to do things without having lots of money though. I’m in a place where even getting a Mac d’s seems a lot of money. Any ideas on what I could do to try and earn more?



Alexander Heyne September 8, 2016 at 3:31 pm

Hey Lauren,

If I were you, i’d live in the entrepreneurship section of the library and start acquiring a new skillset.


T.Freedom September 10, 2016 at 10:11 pm

Hi Alexander,

Excuse my English please. I am so glad I found You! Feeling so stucked/slaved..
I have had this close relationship with the nature since i was a child and seeing this movie called “Into the wild” triggered in my mind a thought of leaving the society (traveling the Europe or going to Alaska). It’s growing fast.

On the other hand, I am probably more afraid of closing my way back than death. It also feels like closing doors to finding that gorgeous gingerhead woman and having children with her and living in the cabin in the middle of the woods with lake nearby (afraid of ending up alone).

We are getting to the point. I am uncertain if it is not just kind of destructive thinking going hand in hand with intuition.
I would rather die free than old behind the window of my flat, but I don’t want to throw my life out of that window with subconscious intention to make myself suffer more( I am 22).

So.. do you think I should maybe try it for a short period of time first or finding smoother way or shall I just wake up before i do that to prevent instant death? Or should i find that woman first?

Thank you for taking your time to read this. I really do appreciate your opinion. Take care!


James September 15, 2016 at 9:33 am

I really enjoyed reading this
However not all of us are on 50k a year so it’s not so easy to move , however other than that a really good read !!! Thanks


Homo Sapiens September 17, 2016 at 4:47 pm

Hey! Great post. I came to this site because I feel like my parents are stuck in life right now. It’s the worst thing EVER, like a pool of laziness is just spreading out from them and starting to taint me, like they just don’t care about anything at all, content to stay at home without socializing with anyone else and leaving me to do things on my own. (The only things they talk about now are doing my homework, turning off the Wifi if I don’t, and eating dinner.) It’s like they’re not in reality, and when they talk to me/each other, I feel like they don’t think of themselves as humans interacting with other humans, or parents supporting their child. They act so tired. (I know that may be hard to imagine, but that’s what it feels like to me.) I feel like they don’t care that it’s super unhealthy for a teenager to be stuck in a house like this with no friends. The last time I hung out with a friend was maybe 2 months ago, and they already moved back to their country, so…. They know I have about, like, 1 friend right now. (Yes, literally.) Maybe half a friend because we just started our friendship. But I feel like they aren’t pushing me to hang out with people or helping me with that. The obvious answer is to have a conversation about this with them. But if I try to talk about it with them, they’ll just push me off and be like, “Deal with it yourself, stop trying to get us to do stuff. We don’t really have any obligations or a social life, so we don’t care. Change yourself before you try to change other people.” Maybe you’re thinking: Do it yourself, girl! But this life seriously drives me crazy and makes me feel like I’m in bright place that’s not in reality and I need someone who’s fully in reality to help me straighten things out. Whenever I try to do stuff, that lazy attitude overcomes me and I feel weak. I guess in that way I’m like them because I’m afraid to ask my one friend if she wants to hang out. I don’t know if I’ll do it correctly, plus I’m still learning how to make friends and I have very little social skills. Plus I have a bunch of tests and quizzes this week and I’m not even done with my other homework yet! (I’m probably saying a bunch of things I’ll regret later, but I NEED help.) Sorry for this long rant. I hope you don’t think this is offensive ;) But I don’t think my parents are being supportive at all. What should I do if life is passing my parents by?


Homo Sapiens September 17, 2016 at 4:50 pm

sorry, meant for that emoji to be a :’-)


Homo Sapiens September 17, 2016 at 5:02 pm

Also, I don’t feel like this all the time. :) When I’m with people, life feels more normal. It’s just when I’m NOT with people (who interact with me) that things start to go crazy.

carban September 20, 2016 at 11:03 pm

erm… yeah, this is all true and so on, but all the references seem to be for people in their 20s. i am 46 and SO totally stuck it’s not true. and no, i can’t just up and leave because a) i have no real money, and plenty of debts b) i have a daughter and c) i am on the autistic spectrum, and coping with society is hard enough as it is without trying to survive in a part of the world where i don’t even speak the language. any suggestions? or is the whole site really just an advertisement for TEFL..?


MJC October 4, 2016 at 3:11 am

I googled “feel trapped in life” and came across this article. It was insightful and the signs fit well in my current situation. I am 33yo and currently a project manager in an IT company. The sudden change in role and responsibilities at work took a toll on me and suddenly I became anxious in going to work, to the point that I wanna puke when I arrived at the doorstep in my company’s building. Suddenly I felt like I am failing at my job and I started hating my job. I want to quit, but I have house mortgage to pay, bills to pay etc.. I try to feel positive everyday, but it is very difficult, I know that I need to push myself, but also I became unmotivated, lazy, and I started to hate myself for that.. then I hate my life… I job hunt every now and then hoping I can land another line of work, or maybe all i need is change in phase and environment. Overall I am trying to fight this, even though it feels that it is a loosing battle… not sure if I am doing the right things… I know someday, this too will pass..


Toqeer Khan October 7, 2016 at 3:12 pm


Hey today I feel stuck.
I lived a western and eastern life.
Both suck.

Hey which is the biggest criminal word in the world “Islam”.
I did not find “Islam” in the Western or the Eastern life.
I found “Heedlessness”.
I know what to do.
I know when I will feel overwhelming emotions.
But I find “Islam” is completely different to what most Muslims do.

It is simple live and let live with a hint of help where you can.

I find people are people, stuck because of ideology, a certain way of life.

I find “Islam” is find a way of life but stay human!

Point being in the end being human and helping others is what it is all about.

The rest is a pile of crap!


Toqeer Khan October 7, 2016 at 3:26 pm

Give your self a chance.

The world is advertising “Islam” to everyone.

It is within your reach grab it, look at it, try to understand it. Remember if it is there the only harm it can do is what you let it.


renan October 14, 2016 at 3:23 pm

Almost everything that I read out here is matching with me, and I’m feeling like “stuck” and dead-emotionally now, and I also read what you said
about how to get free of this stuck feeling, but I think that I need some extra advice, because it’s going all around my whole life, and this is not
that simple..
I’m seriously considering travelling, but I’m from Brazil, and it’s kinda hard to have this travelling opportunities as Americans do,
so I already speak english fluently, my french is advanced and I’m studying Russian and Japonese (very basic in these 2), although I’m graduated in mechanical engineer..
so please if you have some advice for me, or even some book specifically for my purpose to recommend, I’ll be very glad!
Thanks for your time dude :)


Brad November 26, 2016 at 3:31 pm

This article honestly will solve nothing and is written for the 20 something with no debt, kids, or real responsibility. These feelings of being trapt generally come from the reality that you are fucking trapt! If you have kids, debt, etc. you cannot run off to another Country to solve your issues. You’ll fuck yourself! Even coming back from a vacation is depressing enough. Try returning flat brome, credit ruined, judgments and garnishments waiting from abandoning your debts, no place to live, etc. Terrible advice for the majority of us.


lona December 1, 2016 at 11:49 am

This article is a little older now but I wonder if you have an idea for my Situation too. It’s rather my boyfriends situation than mine but here’s the problem: when my boyfriend was 19 he was full of energy, ideas, visions and happiness. He was euphoric about his life, was about to study, live with his friends in a flat and was looking forward to a life of partying, traveling and discovering the world as a young man. He finally felt free from school and as he moved out his life couldn’t have been better. But then he met this woman. He wasn’t really interested in her but lacked experience as he was still a virgin and never had a girlfriend. She turned out to have various mental health issues(I think it’s borderline) but he felt so content with his life, that he never bothered taking a closer look at her. Well roughly one year after they first met she “suddenly” got pregnant. (suddenly stands for wanted a baby and manipulated contraception without telling him)She decided to keep it without my boyfriend hating one say in it. At age 21 he suddenly became father to a child he never wanted and he felt absolutely incapable caring for, with a woman who was supposed to be nothing more than an affair. He says from that day he felt like somebody had put a cage around him. He wasn’t able to travel abroad as he wanted, he wasn’t able to party as much as he wanted and when after two years of constant fighting his girlfriend broke up with him for a man with whom she had cheated on him, 80% of women he was interested in didn’t want to get to know him because they didn’t want a man with a child. The daughter is now 7 years old and since the day she was born he felt trapped and completely thwarted. He is constantly burdened with a responsibility he never wanted combined with the concern for his daughter who has to grow up with a borderline mother who is constantly screaming at her. He would love to go abroad, change his life, start over new but he is trapped by his child and it’s going to take at least another 7 years until he will be able to do what he initially wanted. But even then he doesn’t know how his daughters mental health is going to be affected by her mothers. I’m sorry for the long text but I’m pretty desperate right now and it feels impossible to see a silver lining in this situation.


Morgan December 13, 2016 at 4:19 pm

Hey Bro,

Just gotta say this article really spoke to me, at the moment everything you write describes my life even the want to go to China.

So far I’ve done really well in life I’m 23 earning approx 100k a year. I work a roster 2 weeks straight with a week off to go or do whatever.

As I live in Western Australia, SE Asia is very close to me and ended up getting a girlfriend in Malaysia, honestly having the time of my life with her.

However, due the physically brutal and mental monotonous role of the job and being treated like a slave… My week off I feel like a hollow reckless money spending machine

On my week off even tho I have no bills or rent I’m over come with this shitty empty hollow feeling where I over eat and drink constantly to the point I’m almost saving bugger all.

I look forward to reading all of your articles.


Marcelle February 8, 2017 at 7:36 pm

Omg where is the love button?! This matches me exactly! After hurricane Katrina forced me and my family to Texas, I have hated everything about his place. But I am slowly realizing that this place may not be so bad but it’s not for me due to my circumstances. My coworker and family ask me “why are you so mad all the time?” Or “why did that little thing upset you?’ It has to take this article to show me today that this is what is going on. Thank you so much for this!


Marcelle February 8, 2017 at 7:37 pm

But seriously I have been trying to move away from here since I came here. Plus we are surrounded by refineries and that doesn’t help health either.


Aaron March 9, 2017 at 7:09 pm

I read this article just now in March of 2017, and although I appreciate the advice, much of what was posted is completely impossible for some people. I’ve been unemployed since March of 2011, and the reason why you may ask, is because after a while you just get fucking tired of working hard and getting nothing to compensate for it, not having enough money to ever pay all your bills, and if that isn’t good enough for you, to be laid of 4 times in a row…yes, in a motherfucking row! I got so run down with the constants lay-offs, harassing collection calls for overdue bills, going to the ER with severe panic attacks thinking I was dying, never even a thank you from my employer when I was working, and finding myself deeper and deeper in a hole the more I worked, that yes, I gave up and quit working and quit looking and have been staying with a close friend who is likewise worried about me with no way to help me but provide a place to live. For those wondering, yes I am grateful for this and DO EVERYTHING in the home including cooking and cleaning. Im so far in debt now from trying college out that I had to drop out of due to how fucking expensive it was, to credit cards I had that I can’t pay back, and any other thing I can’t pay back that for me to work at this point will not even come close to paying the monthly bills that would start, and quite literally, come flooding in. When I’m not doing things in the house, I sit around, stare at walls, fuck around on the computer, have no friends, no money, no life, depressed deeply, on medication to control that depression and YEARS of repressed anger that I have no way of venting out without giving myself a straight up heart attack. In this particular posting I noticed options of “move and get a serious change of scenery.” Doesn’t that require money though? When someone has no job, no life, no money, no hope for a future, and barely a pot to piss in, I don’t think moving to China is gonna be their first priority. I’d just like someone out there to give me a fucking chance at something for once and a means to make a decent living, I don’t require too much, just a chance at something without being told I have to go back to school or I have to go into some dumbass training program….I’d prefer an on-the-job training situation, but of course, those aren’t around anymore. I can’t afford to work part-time at some convenience store making $7.50/hour because admittedly, I’ll be stuck there for the next 30 years still angry, unhappy, pissy and with no future to look forward to. So if any smarty pants out there have any options, I’d sure love to fucking know what they are because right now, I see zero point in getting a job because I won’t see nickel one of that money, nor the ability to even save $5 of it a paycheck. I usually don’t ask for help because I get the standard uncaring answer of “uhhh, I dunno….”


Lala March 19, 2017 at 2:49 am

What crap. How am I supposed to leave my house when I have a mortgage to pay and the market to sell is shit? Also, you kind of need money to move abroad. It’s expensive.
Useless article.


Alexander Heyne March 21, 2017 at 1:27 am

Hi Lala –

My solution: Figure it out.


Alexander Heyne August 22, 2013 at 1:13 pm

Hey there,

There’s actually a book that really reminds me of you. It’s called “The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything” by Ken Robinson. It talks about a student who was perpetually having a hard time succeeding in school and was being criticized by teachers. Finally, one teacher mentioned how much of a fantastic artist she was. As it turns out, years went by and the student always struggled in the traditional system.. until she found dancing/ballet. She then found “her” thing, and went on to become a world sensation.

What you said also reminds me a lot of the einstein quote: “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

I really think what’s important for you is to clarify two things:

A. What do YOU want? What do you intuitively feel drawn to?
B. Intellectually what do you THINK you want.

I feel like there’s a big battle going on inside you. Intellectually what you know you should be doing to look good for your family and make them proud, and then the intuitive battle trying to figure out what it is you personally want.

Also, feel free to shoot me an email, here’s my contact info: http://milkthepigeon.com/contact

Let me know how it goes!


(P.S. One last book I suggest buying is this. It’ll change your life: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=finding%20your%20own%20north%20star&sprefix=finding+your+own%2Caps&rh=i%3Aaps%2Ck%3Afinding%20your%20own%20north%20star&ajr=2 )


T.Freedom September 10, 2016 at 10:24 pm

YOu just hit the spot! I am going to read it all and for sure I’ll let you know. Thank you so much.


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