Whether you are ready to acknowledge it or not, you’re a wayfifnder. You’re responsible for people in your family, for colleagues on your team, for your clients, and you don’t usually have precise directions for doing this job “right”.
How do you know how you’re doing, if half the time you feel like you’re “making it up as you go along”?
How do you know whether you’re doing well when you don’t feel certain inside?
You certainly look like you know what you’re doing… Much of the time you actually do know what you’re doing, but inside, in your heart of hearts you’d like to have definite markers to signal to you that you’re on the “right path”.
Ok, maybe, I’m writing about myself again. But I believe you’ve been there, and know exactly the feeling I’m talking about.
“How do I know if I’m on the right path?” clients often ask me.
When dealing with problems that are not particularly well structured (like parenting, intimate relationships, career change, reaching peak effectiveness, etc.), no matter how much data we turn over, it doesn’t give The Answers. Data only gives information that we interpret in terms of your beliefs, fears, hopes and desires.
So, what are your signs, your markers which signal that you’re on “the right way”?
It comes down to is your ability to read the internal map of your beliefs, fears, hopes, and desires (self-awareness), your ability to read the external signs and clues (environmental awareness), interpret those signs, and align your inner desires with these external signs.
Sometimes, there are no external signs that we can understand. The paths are unmarked or unknown. Or the “everyone else’s paths” don’t feel right to us.
Then, to make our way through uncertain terrain, we have to use all of our senses in order to give our brain a chance to put together the most comprehensive mental map possible, a unique map custom-designed just for us.
You’re smart. Whatever clues are out there for you – you picked them up, either on your own, or with the help of experienced friends, managers, mentors, and coaches. Now, you’ve got to look inside, make meaning of these clues, and add into consideration the internal clues of your body. This is what intuitive wayfinding is all about, and it takes practice.
Here are some ideas to remember as you’re finding your way amidst uncertainty:
• There is no universal “right way”, even if “everyone else” seems to be using one
• You didn’t “lose your way”; the time has changed, you have changed, and you’re creating a new way all the time
• Use all of your senses to give your brain the best chance to create a customized mental map for you. Start by simply paying attention, and it will get easier with practice.
• Your eyes and ears have been trained by experience to differentiate signals – what’s far, what’s near, what’s dangerous, and what’s useful. Experiment with developing other senses, so that you become attuned with all of your body to barely noticeable signs and clues. These clues will help you stay “on your way”
• Everyone is wayfinding. Psychologists who write about relationships are wayfinding through relationships. Experts who write about the financial markets are wayfinding. Parents who write about child-rearing are wayfinding. Most everyone is wayfinding through leadership, building trust, and making connections.
There’s no “the way”, there’s only ongoing wayfinding, and we are all doing it all the time. Uncertainty won’t go away, but the good news is that you’ve been doing rock star wayfinding through it all along. You got this.
On Thu., November 16th, I’m offering an exciting new workshop, Intuitive Wayfinding for Analytical Thinkers. In the morning, I’ll present it for a group of software engineers in NYC, and in the evening, I’ll offer a version of it for FREE in Northern NJ. The evening program is open to the public. Please SEE DETAILS HERE.
THINGS ARE CHANGING, FOR BOTH OF US
I am starting a large, exciting and challenging project that will dominate my professional calendar for some time to come. If you know that you and I need to work together soon, now is a really good time to put your name on the calendar for 2018. We can do a quick [free] exploratory call to see what makes sense to you if you’re not sure where to start.
PLEASE SHARE YOUR STORY!
I’m SEEKING STORIES from analytical thinkers who have listened to their intuition in order to make better decisions. Can you share a story about the time intuition shaped a decision you made? How did things work out? You can reach me at Alina@AlinaBas.com. THANK YOU!