I feel stuck, trapped and helpless.

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    Samuel Hale

    Hello, my name is Samuel. I am currently 22 years old and I live in England. I still live at home with my Mum and my two younger brothers, I work full-time at a popular coffee shop chain, I won’t say which one, and I am currently training to become a store manager. I do not know how I have ended up here. I am extremely unhappy at the moment and I do not know what to do.

    I dislike my job, I dislike my job a LOT. I hate being a manager, I hate managing people, I dislike delegation, I would rather do the work myself, if that makes sense. I am hard working and very good at my job, but I struggle when I have to step up and manage others, because this isn’t what I want to be doing with my life.

    I finished school and went to college, though I only completed half of my course and dropped out due to work commitments, something I now hugely regret. I was working part-time at a coffee shop (ironically) whilst I was at college, and work got more and more demanding, I got more and more lazy with my course and eventually just stopped going in. I wish I had completed my course as I now have nothing to show for those couple of years.

    I do not know what to do with my life, I don’t know how to escape this situation. My boyfriend is living and studying in New York right now, and we are planning to move in together here in England when he finishes his studies, but the visa applications are so complicated and expensive, especially as I’m working at a dead end job and earning just above minimum wage. It seems that I have no way out, I don’t know what to do or where to begin looking, you know?

    I am a creative person, I enjoy writing, I always wanted to be an actor but I was always to anxious and afraid to ever get into that, or find a way to attempt it. I love nature and I love the world, I like watching people, why they do the things they do, I want to do something that matters to me, something I can be proud of, I want to do something creative and something inspiring, but I am so trapped in this boring job, serving these ignorant customers, earning barely anything, I don’t know what to do.

    I feel as if I have no talents, no prospects, no future, you know? I just don’t know what to do. I don’t know how to escape this situation. I don’t have any idea what I want to do, if I want to study, find another meaningless job, I don’t know. I am living payday to payday, I have no savings, I have no qualifications other than an NVQ, I have no escape.

    What should I do? I want to bring my boyfriend to England so we can live together, but I will struggle to prove I meet the financial requirements, I will struggle to pay for visas, for flights, I want to do something special with MY life but I don’t know what to do, or where to begin. I feel so trapped. Where should I begin? What should I do? I know I am fortunate to have a job, to have a boyfriend, to have a few good friends, but I can’t help but feeling so lost and crushed by life right now. Working here is ruining my spirit and making me anxious and depressed, I need to find a way out.

    That’s why I’m here, writing this post, asking for help. I don’t know what to do.


    Hi Samuel,

    There is a quote from Eclhart Tolle that say something along the lines of “if you are in an unpleasant situation, you can either remove yourself away from it, change it or accept it.” Having been in a similar situation before, there is nothing like that feeling of being stuck. It drained all the passions I have in life and my every action was dictated by my fear of failure. Sure I hated what I was doing and I want more but what if I don’t succeed?

    My advice: it’s ok. It’s ok to fail, to make mistakes, to have a heart full of passions and break it a few times along the way as long as you are moving forward because that’s what living is about.

    So go out there and do something that you enjoy. Life is amazing when you don’t subscribe to someone else’s plan.


    Hi Samuel,
    I was in your place once, when life seemed overwhelming, and I felt like I had no prospects, stuck and helpless. Here’s something that’s helped me a lot over the years.

    1) I made a list of everything I find joy in, similar to what you did
    2) I put together (on paper) a dream job for myself, if I had my way.
    3) And then I tried to detail out the steps I’d need to take to create my dream job. The series of steps I need to bridge the gap between where I was to where I want to be
    4) Each day, I’d take one step toward it. If the one step felt too big, I’d break it down into many small steps; if the small steps seemed too big, I’d break them down into tinier steps. The point is that it’s important to take that first step to create momentum, and then continue taking baby steps toward your goal. Each step is a positive move towards a better life. You can course-correct as you go, if you change your mind along the way.

    When you approach life with positivity, that energy builds up, giving more and more power to what you put your energy into. (And the opposite is true too – if you put energy into the fears and anxieties you have about feeling trapped, you’ll feel even more trapped.) So try to stop thinking about everything that’s wrong with your life, and start thinking about what you can do to make it feel right.

    Make your journey beautiful! Make every day matter 🙂

    Rock Banana

    If you can afford it, consider getting a life coach or career coach for a few sessions. Make sure they’re a good one. Will be able to explore this with you. This isn’t absolutely necessary but could well be useful for you.


    Oh my gosh, I could have written this post. Let me tell you about me first.

    I’m 25. Have worked for a major UK coffee chain since 2006 when I was 16 while I was doing uni and stuff, became assistant manager. This time last year left because I was sick of it, long hours, serving rude people, being a general dogsbody, I’m sure you know what I mean. Worked 2 crap jobs and just over one week ago have found myself back in my old store, agreeing to take my old assistant manager job back. I feel depressed, useless, hopeless, overwhelmed and completely like there is no point to anything with no way out, ever. I’ve been doing this for almost 10 years!. trust me when I say I know what you’re going through. I don’t want to do this job either. I don’t want to be a cleaner, floor sweeper, take crap from people but don’t have any other options at the moment.

    My advice would be to firstly not give in. I know its a hard job but the more experience the better.
    Think about what skills you have learnt. I know that delegation is crap and you can do a better job alone standing on your head but being able to manage people is a valuable skill. I’m sure there are loads of others like organisation, balancing stock etc
    Start looking. You won’t find another job unless you’re looking for one. However I would suggest not jumping on the bandwagon. I hated the first job I had because I went for the first one that gave me an interview and ended up in insurance!
    Think about what you might like to do and focus your efforts on getting there. And focus on the positive, you have a goal to reach, to get your boyfriend over here. Let that be your motivation. You say you have nothing to offer but you don’t get to manager easily, it’s a tough job.

    If you want to talk more message me because I know EXACTLY what you’re going through. (I happen to be having an ok day today which is why I could write a positive post)

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