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Clarity

I think it's because we are so busy as people in the world today, but so often we choose not to think deeply about the choices and plans we make. I have found this especially true when it comes to goals... and it's one of the fastest set ups for failure.


One aspect of finding clarity in our plans is to figure out our deep motivation. I have heard this referred to as "the why that will make you cry". Take a minute with me and think of something you want to do or are actively trying to do. Next, ask yourself why you want to accomplish or do it. Then, ask yourself why you have that reason. If you keep asking yourself why long enough, you will land on your deepest motivation.


Often, our root motivation is tied to the deepest beliefs we have of ourselves and the people we care about deeply.


We all act in any circumstance because our brains tell us that such an action will lead to a feeling that we want to have (or not have). The more aware of the emotions that are driving us the more aware we are of the deep things that guide our lives.


Another aspect where clarity provides great benefit is in defining our goals and aspirations. A lot of times we recognize something that we want or a new way we want to be and consider our goal set, but I've found that sort of goal setting sets me up for failure.


New habits, which are often the foundation of our goals, take a bit of thought.


Our existing habits consist of a cue and a response and without understanding the existing cue we will struggle to make lasting changes.


For example, I used to stay home with my kids all the time and I developed the habit of doing chores after breakfast, and one of my cues is the way the morning light enters my house. Now that I'm working, I only encounter that cue on the weekends... The rest of the the time I have to set other ques to remind myself to start my chores.


So to set a new goal or plan, it helps to define the cue, such as, at 3 pm or immediately after breakfast or before I watch TV. Get REALLY specific. If you're not working on your new habit every day, what days ARE you working on it?


When setting clear goals, it also helps to define a clear ending point. Our brains hate being uncomfortable while we work on a new habit, so if we don't tell it what DONE looks like, our brain will keep asking if we're done yet every time we are supposed to work on our new habit. And every time my brain asks that question, I'm tempted to say, "Well, that's not really important today."


I have found that when I'm clear with my expectations, it is far easier to stay committed because I know exactly what I'm doing and when I'm doing it (even if I have to figure out some of the details along the way).


And finally, the more often you can remember your deep motivation, the clearer it is and the easier it becomes to act.




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