We often get influenced to make decision and take action with all the information and data that hits. Understanding the importance of ones principles and character can be the backdrop of what makes people success. Having the self-awareness of what your guiding principle can make you an extremely effective decision maker. Recognizing common patterns and common problems within the context of your purpose, can enable you to make a strategic decision or a tactical decision (you need to be comfortable making both). Its about timing and self-awareness of your strengths/weakness. How do we get there? People talk about meditation, prayer, mindfulness, reflection practice and it all comes down to the ability to discern.
- Action #1: Build in time each day for yourself to discern on past, present, and future decision you have made, your current position in life, and outcomes you are enabling. Start small with 5 mins and build off that until it becomes a habit.
Discernment is a critical internal compass that can provide direction, but there is another aspect within us that allows us to move and keep moving everyday…internal drive. People find motivation (another word for “drive”) through material, wealth, fame, or even desire to “be happy.” But best of all, its the ones that find drive through curiosity. Curiosity can harness a sustainable drive to think, live, and do. Curiosity doesn’t fade, yet material, wealth, fame, and happiness do.
- Action #2: Ask yourself – What gets me excited? What gives me a sense of purpose? Am I curious about this? How will my curiosity change if I acquire it or achieve it today, tomorrow, and even 10 years from now. If you can see your curiosity changing over time, assess if that is the right motivational factor for yourself. Having clarify on what makes you curious can give you a sense of purpose and complements your ability to discern.
Drive is the engine within you, having the self-awareness to what drives you is definitely an advantage in life. But discernment and drive together is still incomplete. You might have direction and the drive to take you there, but will you have the discipline to continuously take action and assess your current strengths/weakness. This can be extremely hard. However, the harder it is for you, the more personal satisfaction it will offer. Discipline comes in many forms…it’s the work no one sees, its the late night hours of reading, coding, practicing, preparing…only your internal curiosity can drive this day over day, month over month, year over year. Getting better slowly is the key. That focus, that rigor, that desire to go deeper is rarely found in today’s world of instant gratification.
- Action #3: Assess for yourself – How long can I focus on task? What’s the longest and shortest project you completed?