It’s not planned or premeditated, yet acted upon whenever the opportunity arises. If a gate has been left unchained or ajar it’s only a matter of minutes before Princess has seized the opportunity and is out exploring places she couldn’t get to just seconds before. And usually, she doesn’t go alone.
If you’ve ever seen her in action, you know it’s an act of skill and precision. There’s never a pause to think about it, nor a wasted movement. Just the opposite. As soon as she sees the opportunity she on it! I’m pretty certain she can open a gate faster than most people.
Princess knows her abilities and clearly knows what she wants. I’ve never seen her open a gate and then stand and ponder her next move. Just the opposite.
How about you? Are you prepared to spring into action at a moment’s notice? Do you clearly know what you want, so you’ll recognize when the opportunity presents itself? Are you confident enough in your abilities to act immediately?
Watching someone who’s very clear, focused, and prepared take advantage of an opportunity is impressive. It can almost seem like luck smiled their way and things just fell into place. What you don’t see is the preparation that’s gone on behind the scenes, long before that moment. The preparation that enabled them to spring into action when the opportunity arose.
One of the first steps in preparing, is becoming clear on what you want. There isn’t a shortcut around this one, and it can be the place people get stuck and frustrated. Why? Because they know what they don’t want, but aren’t sure of exactly what they want.
Two key steps to creating greater clarity:
1. Take 100% responsibility for your clarity. Clarity isn’t something that arrives from outside of you. It isn’t a matter of luck either. It’s something you create for yourself. Clarity is a decision.
The word decide comes from the Latin decidere, which means “to cut off from.” To make a decision, you must cut off all other directions. If you remain open to lots of different possibilities at the same time, you get confusion and fuzziness. When you commit yourself to one specific direction, clarity is the natural result.
Think about a time you went to the grocery store because you were hungry but didn’t know what to buy. There were lots of options, which made deciding even harder. Now recall a time when you went to the grocery store to pick up a loaf of bread. You were very clear on your purpose and were in and out of the store in no time.
2. Stop creating the opposite of clarity.
Clarity-reducing patterns include:
- Hanging out with fuzzy, unfocused people who are drifting aimlessly with no direction.
- Living with people whose goals and values are in conflict with yours.
- Distracting yourself with excessive TV, web surfing, video games, or other numbing activities.
- Numbing your mind and emotions with junk food, alcohol, or other addictions.
- Overstimulating yourself with caffeine (which for many people leads to racing thoughts).
- Whining about your lack of certainty or complaining that you don’t know what to do.
Clarity-boosting patterns include doing the opposite of the above:
Hanging out with clear, focused people who can tell you their purpose and direction.
- Living with people whose goals and values align well with yours.
- Feeding your mind with inspirational and motivational material like quality books and audio programs.
- Eating healthy, unrefined foods (especially fruits and veggies, fresh juices, and smoothies) that keep your mind sharp and alert.
- Avoiding stimulants that cause swings in your thoughts and emotions.
- Thinking about your goals and the next actions you can take today.
As you create greater clarity about what you want in life, just like Princess, you’ll be primed to seize opportunities when they present themselves. What if that gate of opportunity is ajar directly in front of you, just waiting for you?