In a New York Times article a couple of months ago, “There’s a Name for the Blah You’re Feeling: It’s called Languishing”, the author, Adam Grant, pinpoints what he identifies as a prevailing emotional state due to the pandemic. Languishing, he says, is neither burnout nor depression but “a sense of stagnation and emptiness.” 

Are you experiencing this feeling? Many of us are in what William Bridges, author of Managing Transitions and The Way of Transition, calls the neutral zone right now although we can see signs of new beginnings.

Whether we call it languishing or the neutral zone, how can you move forward for focus, motivation, and happiness?

Move forward with these three strategies:

  1. Focus on your resilience
    During transitions, I make it a point to check on what my leadership coaching clients are doing for their resilience and talk about what will help them bounce back better. There is no magic resilience wand, but you can start by adding one small resilience strategy to your toolbox. For example, one of my clients felt he was being overly negative at work and in his personal life. He realized he had a real issue with disconnecting from work and began setting clear time boundaries.

  2. Adjust your focus
    Sometimes a new project or a difficult person can stress you out and leave you feeling out of control. Work on accepting the situation, figure out how best to deal with it, and focus on the areas over which you have control and can have an impact.

  3. Embrace change in your life
    In your job, ask yourself, “What changes do I need to make to be more effective and have a greater impact and influence in my position?” For example, the mastermind group I meet with helps me hone in on the changes that will truly benefit my clients and my business. Embracing change isn’t restricted to work, though. Maybe this summer you explore a new hobby or form of exercise or try a different food every week.

Consider one strategy you could use this month to help you feel proactive about moving forward.


  • Beth Benatti Kennedy, MS, LMFT

    Leadership Coach, Author and Speaker

    Benatti Leadership Development

    Beth Benatti Kennedy, MS, LMFT, Leadership Coach, Author and Speaker at Benatti Leadership Development. Beth Kennedy, brings more than twenty years of experience to her role as a leadership and executive coach, resiliency-training expert, and speaker. With an extensive background in career development, she coaches high-potential individuals on how to use their influence strategically, collaborate effectively, and focus on innovation. Ms. Kennedy also creates customized training programs that make an impact, with a focus on keeping employees resilient, engaged, and productive, and able to manage change and transition within the organization. Current and past clients credit her dynamic training design, facilitation, and follow-up coaching model for their documented results and success. She has a diverse client list including corporations, small businesses, nonprofit organizations, and individuals. Ms. Kennedy is the author of Career ReCharge: Five Strategies to Boost Resilience and Beat Burnout. For details about working with Beth, visit