Archive for clarity

How Now, Brown Cow?


Yesterday, I published a post entitled “Are You Playing the Tapes All the Way Through?” In it, I shared about an inner conflict I’d had and how I became clear about the way I could best to handle it. I also promised to give you seven additional strategies for getting clear about your best course of action when faced with multiple, conflicting choices. But I’m not going to do that…

I’m going to give you eight – nine in all! 🙂

Before I get to the list, though, I’m going to go ahead and give you your homework. Just as I suggested yesterday, please begin using these strategies right away. They’ll be useful for you all along your journey, but only if you remember them and how to put them into in play. Plus, using them will enable you to figure out which ones best fit your style. All of them won’t.

Now, here we go:

  1. Ask yourself which choice is more aligned with your long-term goals, and which is choice is more about getting what you want right now, or in the short-term,
  2. Check in with your Higher Power, whether you call that your Higher Self, the Divine within you, God, Goddess, the Universe, the Great Spirit, or some other entity or term more preferable to you. Listen closely, and then be willing to act on what you hear,
  3. Honestly contemplate how you’d expect to feel after having acted on each of the different choices, then be willing to give yourself the gift of acting on the one that genuinely feels the best (In case you missed it, this is the condensed version of yesterday’s “playing the tapes all the way through,”
  4. Imagine you are watching a movie in which you are the beloved heroine or hero, facing the same situation as you’re facing in real life. Ask yourself what decision you’d want your character to take, which course of action you think would do her or him the most good,
  5. Listen to the suggestions of your friends, certainly. Remember, though, that they are only suggestions, based on their own experiences and perspectives of how the world works. You get the final say,
  6. Ponder which choice will further you along the path of becoming who you want to be and creating the life you desire, and which choice(s) would take you in another direction entirely,
  7. Present the conflict to your inner board of advisors or your your inner wise counsel. This entity is made up of people you admire, dead or alive, real or fictional, such as Eleanor Roosevelt or your late grandfather, or like your mentor coach or Atticus Finch. They don’t even have to be people. Sometimes I think about what my dog Little Bit would do, or I check in with the deer or a favorite tree. Think about what you know or at least what you imagine to be true about these beings. Then, make up what you think they’d do in this situation, and thus would advise you to do, too,
  8. Reflect on why you want to do each of the choices, letting the different voices in your head have their say. (No, this doesn’t make you crazy – we all have voices in our heads!) Then, having heard from each member of your *Inside Team, take charge and make an executive decision, laying down the law about the the next step you’ve decided to take,
    Then last, and perhaps my favorite,
  9. Take the time to ponder which choice is the more loving one, and which is more of an indulgence. (Ouch. This one gets me every time.)

Gosh, who knew there were so many different ways to consider the most suitable choice when faced with a difficult (or even seemingly simple) decision? But that’s good. We want to be equipped with a variety of ways to handle inner conflict, because they do and will continue to happen.

Even though I was able to list nine strategies here, I’m certain there are more.

How do you choose what’s next for you when faced with two or more ways you could go? What do you use as the scale with which to weigh your options? I do hope you’ll comment below with your favorite techniques. I’d love to keep adding to my list, both for myself, my clients, and any others who might stop by True Voices’ Be You Out Loud blog for a little love and inspirationg.

One last thing: It may be scary to slow down, in order to make the right decision for you in the moment, but you’re worth it. Don’t think so? Trust me. I know.

OK, my lovely. Get ready, get set, get clear!

*Important note: The Inside Team is a fun and powerful coaching methodology, and the brain child of Master Certified Coach, Cynthia Loy Darst of the Coaches Training Institute, the Center for Right Relationship (CRR Global), and her own company she shares with her husband, Inspiration Point.

If you are an advanced coach, and you’re reading this post on the 17th of September, please know that there is an Inside Team Coach Training Course that starts today! It’s not too late to sign up. Just go to the Inside Team Coach Training Course page on Center for Right Relationship’s website by clicking here and check it out. I’d be willing to bet that if you see this within the week after the start date, and want to join the tele-training then, they would let you in then, too! And, even though I don’t get any money for signing you up for the course, I am one of the Inside Team Mentor Coaches. I would love to have you join me there!

And last but certainly not least…

Cynthia Loy Darst is wise beyond her years, and someone I’m grateful to be able to call my teacher, mentor, and friend. Check out her delightfully insightful and deeply moving TEDx talk here.

Accountability: Not a Dirty Word

Welcome to my new series… The AB…Zs of Self-Care!

I think it’s only fitting that we start this series today, on the first day of a brand new year.  Many of us set intentions, if not make resolutions, to be kinder to ourselves and/or take better care of ourselves when starting a new year. But, regardless of what we really want, as the year rolls on, life happens; and honoring our commitments of any kind becomes harder than we imagined. Therefore, I am starting this series with a reminder of something that can make that easier…


My clients receive a lot of valuable things from working with me, their coach – clarity, confidence, and greater access to their own wisdom, to name a few – but what I’ve been told they pay the “big bucks” for is the accountability.

Too often, we humans (and I’m certainly including myself here), know what it is we want to do, sometimes even know how to go about doing it, but when it comes to truly going for it, this is the place we falter. Accountability can be the lynchpin that ensures that we reach for and attain the goals we set for ourselves.

And believe me – we coaches need this tool, too. Even as I am writing these words, I am acting on a commitment I made to a coaching friend that I would write, today, and on this topic. And when I am done, I will let her know that I did it.

Whether or not you have a coach, you can use this tool by partnering with someone in a similar situation, and asking each other these three questions:

  • What will you do? Be as specific as you can.
  • By when will you do it? Again, have a specific time in mind, and state it out loud and/or write it down.
  • How will I know? Determine the means of sharing this task’s accomplishment with each other, and then get busy!

If you’d like to help each other think it through even more thoroughly, ask each other these two, additional questions:

  • What is important about achieving this goal? Reminding yourselves of why you want to do these things in the first place will equip you with extra motivation when things get difficult.
  • What might get in the way of fulfilling this promise? Once you know the answer to this one, you can take steps to remove any obstacles on your path so that it’s even easier to reach your desired outcome.

And one more note about accountability: When life intervenes (and from time to time, it will), and it becomes difficult or impossible to honor your original commitment, simply renegotiate the terms of your commitment with your accountability partner, clearly and without self-condemnation, and you are right back on track.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to alert my accountability partner that I wrote this post!

Other As in the AB…Zs of Self-Care:

  • Acknowledging What’s True
  • Apples
  • Art
  • Asking for What We Want