“The more of me I be, the clearer I can see.” ~ Rachel Andrews
Many people move through life just “doing” without intentional and meaningful thought given to why or what it is that they are doing. This often finds them dealing with fear and worry, rather than purpose and action. When you choose to consciously work on a life plan for ‘what I want to do’ or ‘who I want to be,’ the process alone of exploring options can begin to ease anxiety, alleviate fear, and shift you forward.
Let’s be candid, who likes being stuck in a rut – living a life smothered by society’s expectations? In all likelihood, if you’re not clear about your own purpose and being it, you are probably going to feel trapped in an unsatisfying life experience. Wasting time doing things that you really don’t want to be doing is not going to allow you to fulfill your potential and express your uniqueness.
If you want to live an extraordinary life you must know who you are. To clearly know who you are, you’ve got to explore within yourself and be open to possibilities that you can discover about yourself. The prospect of doing this exploratory work is usually met with one of two reactions: either ‘I’m all in’ or ‘I’m scared to step into that unknowing.’ Rarely in my work do I find people who hover in between.
If you really want to change your life for the better or you are unclear about what’s next, there are many steps you can take to refocus and redirect your path. But I’m not going to share those steps today. Instead I’m going to pose three questions for you to ask yourself. After all, self-knowledge is your greatest knowledge! Answering these questions will help you to discover your unique passions, strengths, values, and desires.
Why this exercise? Because I don’t believe you want to be ‘lost,’ frustrated, anxious, trapped or unfulfilled. Call me crazy, but I think you would like to have greater clarity about your self, your potential, and your journey.
These questions aren’t about the “self” that others want you to be or the self that acts to fit in and conform with what society accepts. They are intended to have you think, without limitations, about the authentic you.
What do I absolutely love in life? List anything that you love about the world and the people in your life. Think about activities that get you excited and make you feel most alive: sports, learning, teaching, gardening, travel – anything. Within your love for these things lies deep passion.
- What are my key values? Spend some time searching your soul to come up with a list of your basic values. Are you the type who values honesty, green living or a deep love of nature? Do you value charity over letting others find their way on their own, or is it the other way around? Knowing what you truly stand for is an integral component of good decision-making and being in integrity.
- What does success mean to me? Be very specific. “I want to be rich,” is not an answer – just what does rich mean anyway? Try to come up with at least three answers to the question of what success really means to you personally. One of the biggest obstacles to success is that most of us have never consciously explored what that means to us, aside from some vague idea of fame, fortune or other worldly success. Knowing what success really means to you allows you to weigh your choices more accurately.
The world needs the unique you, your clarity of purpose, and your vibrant contribution. You can be this by knowing who you really are, doing what you love (your passions), and living by your own set of values.
Don’t you want to be clear about these?