Your Inner Compass
Your life is a journey.
This statement is not only true, but it means you need to actively start navigating your life to get the most out of it.
And for that, you require a compass.
Looking for direction in our lives, we want a GPS that tells us where to go, how to get there, and stays with us at every turn. How much thinking on your part, does a GPS require?
As soon as you don’t have a GPS, you might become lost. You’ve relied on someone else navigating you.
Even worse, you come upon the Sahara Desert.
It is a constantly shifting terrain with no visible horizon changes to provide a sense of direction or tell you where you are relative to the rest of the desert.
In the desert, a GPS is useless to you.
The terrain is uncharted and so you must navigate by following your compass.
You don’t know how long your journey will take; you only know that by following your compass you are heading in the correct general direction.
It is the same in life.
For example, if you are a parent, when does that job end? What guide or manual points you in the right direction?
The reality is that you don’t know.
You rely on your intuition and internal compass.
Your challenge in life is to keep moving in the “right” direction while the conditions around you are constantly changing and in an environment where there is ever increasing uncertainty. The GPS you’ve been conditioned to follow has dropped you off in the middle of nowhere…or somewhere.
You have to now learn for yourself, what direction is best for you.
When you learn to listen and follow your compass, you begin fulfilling your destiny. By following your compass without worrying about a specific goal, you allow your compass to shape your goals.
So how do you find your own internal compass? Well firstly, you have always had one. It’s that internal voice that pops up in your head from time to time to guide you.
Most of us have simply been conditioned to tune that voice out, according what others, and society need or expect from us.
Take a few minutes today to begin to write down thoughts about what your real compass is.
Think about what makes you happy and what you really value at your core. Values supply fulfillment and meaning in our life.
Our values form our internal map of reality.
Your inner compass will come from what YOU value; Pick between 5-10 values from the list below, and fill out your internal map.
Is this what you are focusing on in your life or have you lost your way?
Family, career, money, time, mental health, physical health, wealth, friendships, religion, spirituality, honesty, cleanliness, beauty, creativity, adventure, autonomy, community, humor, influence, knowledge, justice, loyalty, peace, respect, responsibility, success, wisdom. Any additional values that personally mean something to you…
Don’t censor yourself.
After choosing a few of these values, you’ll get a good read on what your compass is likely to be. It can change over time too. Make a point of revisiting periodically.
In addition, Steve Donahue, author and speaker, suggests writing a compass statement.
A good internal compass statement will have the following characteristics:
There should be no implied destination or result
Your compass serves to direct or inspire you
Your compass is natural to you and has always been there
Internal compass statements include: “Be different”; “Have fun first”; “Keep it real”; “Follow my heart”; “Be present”.
When navigating the desert, don’t forget to stop at the occasional oasis. It’s a place where you get to rejuvenate yourself, refuel, re-energize and reconnect.