6 Ways to Figure Out What You Want
What do you want?
I mean, besides molten chocolate cake and a nap. (Me too.) Think bigger.
What do you want?
Sky's the limit.
I'm guessing this is might be a tough one for you. Especially if you're used to figuring out what your baby wants (to be nursed to sleep, not left in the crib), what your toddler wants (another applesauce pouch), what your kid wants (the toy her sister has), etc, etc, etc...
We are experts at knowing what our kids want and amateurs at knowing what we want.
Before I became a coach myself, a friend led me through a life coaching exercise.
I identified core values. I talked about hopes. Then, she asked me to describe my ideal life 5 years from then.
I drew a blank.
I didn't know how to answer. Like, no clue.
Even though she would have accepted anything I had to say, and even though exactly zero was riding on my answer, I left that question a big ol' blank.
I've worked with enough clients to see that many of us have a hard time pinpointing what, exactly, it is we want. Sometimes it's making a decision about family or work. Sometimes a new block of time opens up for you (thank you, preschool) and you're not sure what to do with it. And honestly, working with a coach can be a daunting commitment because it means that we need to do just that - figure out what we want.
Luckily, you're not alone. Today I want to share 6 ways I've helped my clients figure out what they want, even if they came to me with no clue. It's not a patented process, because every person is different, but I hope that one or two of these will jump out at you - and that you use them to find the clues of what you want next in life.
Before you begin: please don't let this list scare you. Read one or two, bookmark the rest for later. Or skim the list and set a phone reminder to try one tonight. There's no need to do everything here, but maybe ONE of them will be what you need to get going!
6 ways to figure out what you want
1. Take your best guess.
Sometimes the easiest way to come at something is sideways. Don't know exactly? For you head-types, make an informed guess. For you heart-types, go with your gut. Sit with that guess a moment. How does it strike you?
2. Write it out.
Set a timer for 5 minutes. Sit down with a pen and paper and write out whatever comes to mind about the decision at hand. Don't think too hard, just write until the timer goes off. Now read what you've written. Does anything here strike you as untrue? What clues do you see about what you desire?
3. Think back to your childhood loves.
I have a clear memory from kindergarten P.E. class. I walked up to a girl named Jesse who seemed nice and asked, "Will you be my friend?" Fast forward 30 years, and I'm following a call to sacred friendship. I build safe, deep relationships with clients to help them reach their goals. What have you loved since childhood? How does that inform the decision you need to make now?
I took this test in the throes of full-time parenting and loved that it highlighted strengths I could build on in or out of the workforce. The book (affiliate link) describes 34 strengths in detail and gives access to the online test to learn your top five. When you know what you do best, it's much easier to figure out what you want!
5. Multiple choice.
My client (an Enneagram 9) told me that sometimes, when asked what she wants, she's not sure, but if someone lists out some options, she can pick out pretty fast what she does and doesn't want. Ask someone to list some options for you. Notice your reaction. (And don't be surprised if a new idea pops into your head!)
6. Talk it out.
Find someone you trust who has the ability to not interrupt or immediately jump in with their opinion. Ask them if they will listen to you process out loud for 15 minutes, asking only for you to say more about something if it seems important. Check in after 15 minutes. What have you learned?
Which option is standing out to you today?
If you still feel confused about what you want, help is here! Every month, I make time to talk to women just like you to help them figure out what they really want. It might sound selfish, but it's often the first step to embracing who they were made to be and bringing the full impact of their gifts to the world.
The first step is clicking the button below. Book a complimentary, 30 minute intake interview with me to see if we're a good fit to work together.
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