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Clarity of Mind: How to Figure Out What you Want in Three Steps

Transcript: Welcome to another episode of re-inventing your life. I’m Dr. Diely Pichardo-Johansson, board certified hematologist-oncologist, cancer survivor, author of eleven books, and mother of four children, including kids with special needs.

And if you’re just joining us today, don’t worry. Every video is designed so you can get something out of it, even if you haven’t participated in the previous one.

To refresh your memory, the reason I’m here today is not because I am a physician or a life coach or yada, yada; but because I am an expert on self-reinvention. In video number zero, or the introduction that I call, “A love letter to all Super women in the world” we talked about my story, reinventing myself as a divorced mother of four, including twins with special needs, who found her soulmate against all prognosis. And before that, reinventing myself arriving to a new country. And after that, my most recent self-reinvention is being here with, you living my life as a life coach instead of a physician.

Clarity of Mind: How to figure out what you want in three steps

Today we’re going to talk about Crystal Clarity (Clarity of mind). You need to figure out what you want, or the decision will be made by someone else. Let’s talk about that.

Many of us, superwomen overachievers, we go through life following someone else’s directions, following rules. We start as the good girls who are obedient, follow everything Mom and Dad say. Try to make our parents happy and proud. Then we become the gold-star students. We become the chasers of milestones. “Now I have to get married. Now I have to have babies. Now I have to get a diploma. Now I have to get a promotion.”

 What happens when we run out of directions? By then, we may have lost our ability to know what we want. Even worse, in many cases, we may already have an association that if we really want something, that means we should not do it. Think about it. “You should not eat the cake. You should not have a cigarette. You should not drink the beer—or whatever alcohol drink. You’re married, you should not look at the other guy…”

Then, our whole lives become a “No.” “Don’t do this. Don’t do that.” And we lose our capacity to figure out what we want. When actually, if you find out what is really important to you—what are your values are— when you are working in alignment with your values, you make better decisions.

Making Decisions Requires Making Occasional Mistakes

Life is designed for us to make decisions in a way of trial and error, trying things for size. If you don’t like it, it’s okay. You learned something about yourself, move on. But we super women, we good girls, we go through life thinking that the world is coming to an end if we make the wrong decision. We doctors? We tend to think that if we make a mistake, we’re going to kill someone.

The first step is knowing that the process of figuring out what you really want is going to be trial and error. And it’s okay. It’s okay to make mistakes. It’s okay to change your mind. It’s okay to find yourself two days later with something in your closet and say, “What was I thinking?” It’s all good. It’s all part of this beautiful experience we call life.

Before talking about what we want, let’s talk about what we need

[According to Tony Robbins] All human beings have the exact same needs.

1-The need for certainty; we all want to feel safe.

2-The need for a variety—after we have felt safe for a while, we get bored, we want some excitement.

3-The need for significance—feeling different, feeling important,  feeling valued…

4- The need for connection. (The more significant we are, the more different we are from others. It takes away our ability to connect with others. We want both [significance and connection], but we usually seek one more than the other.)

5- The need for growth

6-And the need for contribution.

Those six needs will be universal. (The first four, people have to fulfill them or they would die, there’s no way around them). But we all have different flavors of what that means to us. We all want joy and happiness, but some, for some of us that joy comes more from adventure, excitement, variety. While some of us tend to associate joy with peace, with bliss, with comfort, with reliability, predictability, routine…

The Key to Clarity Lies in Our Values:

So how do we figure out our values? There are several ways. In my most recent book [Bounding Back: A How-to Manual for Joy with Minimal Energy Expenditure], I share one of them, which is words. ( I’m a writer, so I love words).  That’s one technique. Today, let’s use one that’s easier or shorter.

Let’s start by thinking about your passions, the things that already are working right in your life.

What is right in your life right now? What makes you happy? Maybe it is the people you love? Maybe see your pet? Maybe it’s a sport? Maybe it’s a form of art that you like to practice? Think about what is that thing that makes you happy and what are the feelings that causes for you.

Maybe your passion, like for me, is writing; and that gives you a sense of expansion, of growth, of exhilaration. Maybe the thing that brings you joy and passion is your family; and that brings you a feeling of connection, bliss, compassion, love, kindness…

 Write down all the [feeling] words that come natural to you when you’re engaged in your passion. Take a look at those, go over as many passions as you can, and keep an eye for the repeat ones, and the ones that when you look at them, you feel: “Yes! At my core, this one is something important to me.”

To give you an example, my main five values are love, life enjoyment, growth, spiritual growth, contribution, (helping others) and authenticity.

Why is it important to know your values?

Once you know, your values, any decision is incredibly easy. When you are ready to make a decision, you just have to ask, “Where’s the contradiction? Why I have two different voices inside me telling me do this or don’t do this?” Look at it. [That means] two of your values are in competition. That is why I always recommend that once you have figured out your values, you rank them in order. Number one, number two, number three…

In my case, Love is always the first one. So even if I have a value, for example of authenticity, or integrity, (integrity is the word I was looking for). If someone I love betrays my trust and I’m tempted to kick them out of my life because they’re [doing something] against my value of integrity, my value of Love is always the first one. So, the decision is made right there, Love trumps [everything else] all the time.

So that is the number one reason [why it’s important] to learn your values: every decision you make in your life after that is a hundred thousand times better. Number two [is because], whenever you are doing something in alignment with your values, it’s like having the wind on your favor. It’s going to be dramatically easier.

An Exercise in Figuring Out What you Want

1- Take the area of your life that you like to work with. Let’s say it’s your career—you’re not happy with your career. You feel you should be doing something that feels more right.

2- Write everything about your current situation that you do not like. Go to town, vent it out, get it out. Nobody is there [to judge you]. No filters. Say everything you hate about this. Be specific. Don’t [just] say “my boss is an A-hole”. [Elaborate] “I don’t like that my boss does not appreciate what I do.” Be as specific as possible. And when you are done with everything that you don’t want…

3- Transform it into a positive. What is the opposite of that? That’s what you want. [For example], if you wrote “I don’t like that my boss doesn’t appreciate me.” [that translates to] “I want a job where I feel appreciated and valued.” If your wrote, “I don’t like that I’m not getting paid enough,” [translate that to] “I want a job that gives me a decent salary.” And be very clear on what’s in your mind.

Reconciling Conflicting Inner Voices

Listen, you’re going to feel resistance and that is normal. We all have different parts inside us, different voices, different archetypes.

For example, inside me, when I had to make the decision of quitting medicine, there was a scared part that said, “I will never be able to get another job that gives me this good salary.” And also a rebel saying, “[Never again.] I don’t want to deal with Medicare one more day. I don’t want anything to do with malpractice insurance.” And then there was this sacrificed, suffering woman saying, “I have to do this [stay in oncology] because my mother died of cancer and I have to prove to the world that she didn’t die in vain.”

Every voice inside of you is in alignment with one of your values, have a conversation with them. My favorite way to do that is journaling, (though sometimes you can have a conversation aloud in front of the mirror). Get a coach to help you with that. Clarify why are you in conflict about admitting that you want what you say you want. More often than not, when you sit down and you start writing, “Why do I have resistance about doing this—that I have always wanted to do in my life?” Sometimes you will find out: there’s a part of me that’s scared. There’s a part of me that fears ridicule. There’s a part of me that knows she wants moe in her life. There’s a part of me that says, “you should be happy with what you have.”

But the more you get in touch with those voices, the more you’ll be able to differentiate your real voice from the voices of the people who raised you. And we go back to where we started when we are raised like good girls, like star students, like obedient doctors. We tend to internalize the voices of what other people want in our lives. Do I really want this? Or is this the voice of my teachers saying, “make me proud Do I really want to do this? Or is this actually society telling me that if I don’t have this, I’m not successful enough?

So by now, that should be enough to keep your juices going. This exercise, figure out exactly what you don’t want in your current situation. Translate that to what you want. And in order to make convert that into a goal, listen to those conflicting voices inside of you that are telling you “no”. Are they your real voice? Are they someone else’s voice, which of those voices are in alignment with your true values?

A Homework on gaining Clarity of Mind

Take the one or two areas of your life that you decided you wanted to work with, then create an intention.

First, you’re going to figure out what’s your intention. And then, what’s your goal. What’s the difference? Your intention: You’re willing to write a statement in alignment with your values that describes exactly how you want to feel in this area of your life. And then after you have made this clear only then you say what’s your goal, what’s the practical, measurable thing you can do to achieve that?

And Let Me Know if You Need Help

If we had a few more hours, I will talk to you about the RPM system and how to make a massive action plan in alignment with your values, and in alignment with the Why you want this. When you know the why, you’ll figure it out the how later on.

 But we won’t have time. I wish these videos were longer. Please comment in the post, message me. Share.

When you are doing this homework, you will probably feel resistance. And that is what we’re going to cover in the next episode, we’re going to talk about releasing the blocks we have.

Message me, if you need any clarification about this video. And remember, I am already open for clarity sessions, a free hour-long session with me, where I help you answer all these questions. I help you clarify what you want. And then we decide if I am a good fit in your life to help you achieve that.

It was a pleasure talking to you guys, and you know how it is. In two more weeks, we’ll meet again to talk about the next topic, which is when moving blocks.

See you. Bye.

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