One word that constantly nags me: clarity. The problem is that merely understanding the need for clarity doesn’t make attaining it any easier.
Getting clarity is like grasping for the wind, or squeezing water. The more you try, the more it seems to elude you … and the more maddening the quest for clarity becomes.
We figure a few well-meaning questions might do the trick:
- “Who are you, really?”
- “What do you want to do with your life?”
- “What are your greatest strengths?”
- “If money wasn’t an issue, what would you do?”
Those questions usually leave more questions than answers. Yet after about 18 months of wrestling with some tough questions (ok, including some of the ones above) I’m getting a bit clearer on clarity. There is no one-size-fits-all answer, but I can share a few insights from the journey.
1. Get around new voices.
Find people that don’t have long histories with you. Many of them are just a click away online, so starting a blog can be a huge help. For me, it was pivotal. Download my DIY Blog Guide if you need help. It will take you from start to finish on launching your blog.
I also “deleted” my Facebook account several times over the past few years because the only people on it were those that knew me from old jobs, old communities, and (gasp!) college. It’s not that these folks discouraged me from anything. It’s just that Facebook was this ever-present reminder of my past. (Note: I didn’t delete my friends, I just deactivated my Facebook account. I’m back on it now.) Part of getting clarity means abandoning what is already clear. In this case it was my past, because I made a major career pivot.
2. Realize there are varying degrees.
Clarity can come in shades and nuances … sometimes you need general clarity first, then get more specific. Once you have new voices in your life, see what they say about you. Do they affirm you are good at ABC? Do you attract people for doing XYZ?
When I dove headlong into marketing and coaching, I quickly realized these sectors were too wide and that I needed to “niche down.” But I at least knew I was in the right sector. Sometimes we think we’re supposed to suddenly attain razor-sharp, 1080p HD clarity. Accept that specific clarity may come later.
3. Marry movement & meditation.
Fighting for clarity can be really frustrating. It will wear you out, and make you think about giving up. You’ll feel like you’re walking through a heavy fog trying to find a twig or branch with your hand.
The thing is you’ll never find your way out of the fog by just sitting down where you are, waiting for the weather to clear up. You’ve got to keep putting yourself out there, trying new ways of expressing yourself, and experiencing life in fresh ways. Clarity comes through a marriage of movement and meditation.
The point of no return …
Gain just a bit of traction and you’ll already be past the point of no return. You’ve sniffed clarity … caught it’s scent … got a glimpse of what life could be like. You’re too smart to go back; you know too much now. It’s like Neo taking the red pill in The Matrix.
Honestly I get tired of chasing clarity. It carries a price; financially, emotionally, spiritually, mentally. But if you’re going to spend your energy, time, money, and brainpower on anything, why not divert them towards what will get you that much closer to clarity?
Question: Have you wrestled with clarity? Or do you have further questions or thoughts on gaining clarity? Share below.
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