You’d be surprised at how often someone comes into a therapy or coaching session, and does not know what they want help with that day. They have no idea what they want to talk about….how is that possible? It’s actually very common-many people are simply not in-tune with what they want out of life.
In essence, they’ve been on autopilot, and they’ve succumbed to letting pop culture dictate what they’re supposed to want out of life.
But somewhere along the way, that creepy feeling of WTF enters their daily lives…
So they sign-up for therapy, or coaching, knowing that something’s not quite right, or that something’s missing in their life, but have no idea how to put their finger on it, let alone “fix it.”
Ever notice that yourself? How hard is it to decide what to eat some days? What to do with your friends on the weekend? How to ask your lover for what you really want? When someone asks what would make your life fulfilling and meaningful, do you have a quick and easy answer? Some do, but many don’t.
A lot of times there’s a part of us, let’s call it our ego, that employs the survival strategy of keeping us veiled from what we truly desire out of life. Wait, what? Yes, it’s true. It’s especially true when that deeper part of us yearns for something that’s taboo, not en vogue at the moment, or not accepted by one’s friends and family. You see, it’s too scary to reveal that deeper part of the soul, that essential nature that craves authentic self-expression. Whoa, Nellie! That’s not approved by my friends! …The TV commercials clearly show me what’s cool and not cool-and this isn’t considered cool by the cool kids…The kids at school will laugh at me if I’m too different, maybe even bully me! … My co-workers would never let me hear the end of it if I were to…….be me? Really? Yes, that’s what the biggest fear is for most people not in touch with their truth: what if other people (that I care about) don’t accept this more authentic version of me that’s just not….mainstream? What if I am rejected, bullied, persecuted and abandoned by the people I love, or want in my life?
That’s a really scary thought. And that’s what a lot of people are up against, all day, everyday, without even knowing it! It’s exhausting, and it serves its purpose in keeping them in the dark about what matters most to them….until there’s such a disconnect that people seek help in the form of coaching and/or therapy.
So the next time you find yourself unable to pinpoint or articulate what you want when someone asks you, stay with that unknowing, and tell yourself it’s safe to know. Find a therapist or a coach to work with, and begin the beautiful excavation of your essential self. Yes, things will shift in your life. Yes, some people may not like the new you. But you will like the new you, because you will feel more you than ever before. And that’s what matters most.
For a really tame (as in less scary) version of self-inquiry that will guide you to discover the feeling states you are after when you set goals for yourself, check out The Desire Map by Danielle LaPorte. And if you’re not sure what I mean by “feeling states,” here’s a list of my favorite and most sought-after feelings, aka my core desired feelings, that I use to design my own life with. Enjoy, and let me know what you discover about yourself!