1. a situation with contradictory logic making it impossible to achieve a favourable outcome
it was a catch-22 situation
If you are in a 'catch 22' situation, you are in a situation that seems impossible to negotiate due to a lack of logical solutions. One example is if you wish to open a bank account you may need a proof of address, but you can't be issued with proof of address unless you have a bank account. The situation itself is somewhat ridiculous. Similar in meaning to being 'between a rock and a hard place'. This is an informal phrase but you will often hear it used in professional situations..