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2020: Taking Your First Step Towards Clarity

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Taking Your First Step Towards Clarity

With the passing of this decade, and the century’s “terrible teen” years now behind us, the speed and tempo of the world continues to accelerate. I, for one, feel more brain-cluttered, disjointed and confused than ever before.

Upon reflection, it all makes sense. The mainstreaming of the handheld digital device during this decade literally put a powerful computer in our pockets. This has been a convenience for some, and a total distraction for most— through bombardment by social media, daily messages from distribution lists, and advertisement pop-ups that are eerily targeted at each of us. And don’t forget about the effective marketers making us anxious if we don’t invest in the latest fashion, diet techniques, new music and irresistible streaming opportunities. How does one keep up? Or should the question be, how do we slow down long enough to make the best decisions for ourselves rather than being carried away in the undertow of trending topicality and ceaseless acquisition?

Even so-called reality television and the news media have latched onto the newest trends in attention grabbing, much of it going against the grain of truth and reality as we formerly knew them. Contending with all of it has delivered me from a state of controlled overdrive to a frantic existence at times, and has thrusted me right into my own reality TV show of life. And like reality TV, The Deborah Show is far from the truth, as it’s composed merely of my perceived reality.

The movie you’re starring in may seem completely real to you, but like me, you’re also seeing life from a distorted viewpoint. If you’d like to join me in working out this kink during the coming year, invite the undisputable truth into your life. Aspire to find Clarity— my 2020 Word of the Year! Because contrary to Jack Nicholson’s claim in his movie, you and I CAN handle the truth.

As I seek Clarity, my goal will be to understand reality— not my reality or truth, but the truth. And truth be told, this exploration will be a challenge. Since I’m responsible for having created my own version of the world, conveniently exaggerating certain aspects to fit my truth and walking through parts of my life myopically, it’s up to me to reverse my self-imposed predicament. This will clearly take courage, compassion (for self and others), vision, perspective and the utilization of my own coaching skills, all while managing the conundrum of adaptation. Once the mental fog begins to clear and I slowly gain Clarity, my hindsight understanding of “reality” (my thoughts, feelings and actions of the past) will change. And like a GPS, I’ll need to continually recalculate.

Take Your First Step Towards Clarity

So, why does it matter? If it’s going to be so difficult to gain Clarity, why bother? Well, I recognize that I’m finally courageous enough to live full-on. I’m committed to living the rest of my life to my fullest, self-designed potential. Instead of living “large” and extravagantly, I’ll choose to live proudly, extracting real meaning from the moments of my life. I’ll aspire to honor my values and to value my life aspirations. Clarity will be a crucial component here, because without it, my aspirations would be difficult to recognize.

If you’re with me on this journey toward Clarity, consider the first self-reflective step I ask my clients to explore: Take a mental snapshot of your own future retirement party. Imagine the scene of the celebration of YOU. What’s the vibe? Who will give a speech? What will they say? Let this exercise be not only about your career résumé, but your life résumé, too. Living with the finale in mind makes your path easier to orienteer. If you begin the journey even one degree astray, perhaps misguided by the influence of others or succumbing to your physical circumstances or your limiting beliefs or your communication flaws, you risk losing out on the opportunity to live your best life.

In 2020, explore with me what Clarity is. What informs your perspective, or distorts it, or fogs it? How can you see more? How can you understand other people’s realities in a way that reveals truth? Make it your work this year, as I will mine, to clear the fog that impedes Clarity. The process will be a layered exploration of how you and I see the world and what informs these visions— stemming from our childhoods, our biases, and our histories as lived until today.

Address, as I will, your blind spots, because unless we have eyes on the backs of our heads, we’ll always have blind spots. Get clear, as I will, on your future aspirations, and then try out some tools and practices to help gain perspective. Manage, as I will, your own ability to assess what’s real and what’s factual.

Join me each month in 2020 as I examine a different dimension of gaining Clarity. Get ready for a lineup of inspiring DRIVEN colleagues, clients, friends and allies who will share their own aspects of and experiences with waking up to reality. We’ll provide weekly insights on the DRIVEN blog, we’ll cover the same topicality during our OfficeHours webinars, we’ll produce relevant videos and podcasts, and we’ll link you to exceptional outside resources to set you out on your own personal, self-styled journey towards Clarity. Life and career will begin anew!

For starters, any great journey benefits from documentation. So, join me during the month of January to engage the practice of Journaling. It’s the ideal tool for recording history, in real time, to reflect upon, to celebrate with, and to gain self-awareness. Plus, journaling is a great Leadership Tool. Settle in and get ready for the adventure known as your life to unfold— with Clarity. Happy New Year!

Related: Drop The Judgment: A Look At Why We Assume

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