A lot of people choose this time of year to contemplate their goals and make resolutions for the coming year. The vast majority give up before the month ends. Getting a promotion or a pay raise are realistic and common goals but if these goals are successful, will they get you what you really want?
Which brings me to my main question: What DO you really want?
Simple enough question, right? Or as the Spice Girls put it, “Tell me what you want, what you really, really want!
A good friend and colleague stopped me in my tracks a few weeks ago when he asked me this question. Why was I taken aback? After all, I ask my clients this question all the time – “what do you want”
It can be a challenge to come up with just one word that encompasses everything you want – peace, abundance, joy etc. It might be easier to pick one or two areas of your life and then ask –
What do I want:
- In love?
- In your career/job/business?
- In your friendships?
- In your family?
- In your health?
- In your financial state?
Once you’ve answered these questions, I want to encourage you to be vulnerable. I’ve spent some much-needed time in deep reflection the last few weeks. I’ve had some very raw conversations with people I trust where both of us have been able to be vulnerable. That’s not something most of us are encouraged to do growing up, let alone as adults.
You might be thinking, how does being vulnerable help to answer the question of what we want? Being vulnerable means dropping the pretense, taking risks, trusting – scary right? If you never do these things, how likely are you to drop the veil of self-preservation and get honest with yourself and others about your feelings and what you want? If you haven’t tried being vulnerable lately, or maybe never, how likely are you to take the risk and try it?
Whether you’re wanting to have better relationships- with your boss, your team or clients- or want to break the habit of always having to be right and have the last word, can you ask the questions, or allow someone else to ask the questions for which there are no easy or apparent answers? This isn’t always valued or appreciated right away but if we take the time to learn the skill and put it into practice, it can be enormously rewarding.
If you’re willing to be vulnerable, dig deep, and listen, you will begin to see the areas of your life or business that need change. When you’re able to see what you don’t want, it puts you one step closer to knowing what you DO want!
In my experience and what I witness with individual clients and teams, is that sometimes the deep, painful insights, are often what spur them on to ask more questions and clear away the clutter so they can explore what makes them happy, what floats their boat, what makes their heart sing!
Is there someone in your life who can provide this support for you? Is it your best friend, spouse, partner, therapist or coach? Ask them the big question and get them to ask you, “What do you really want?”
It’s the New Year – I know two things that I want. I’m asking the question every day: “Will this activity/behavior/relationship get me nearer to what I really, really want? Try it out….