Stand up for something or…

If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.  Michael Evans

A problem many of us face is not getting an answer to the question ‘ what do I want ?’ Obviously then getting satisfaction is very difficult because we will never know when we are satisfied. If all this sounds confusing then I suggest that you just do a small exercise now. Write down the amount of money that will make you completely contended. Now assume you get that money write down how you will spend each day.  I hope you have written down you answer and not just let it float around in your mind. If the answer to these questions are difficult to jot down then you know that you are part of the majority who has no clue what they want!

Most times we know what we want but can’t specify it. E.g we all want lots of money but can’t decide how much will satisfy us. Or we want a beautiful house but we can’t pinpoint more details. Notice that this problem begins because we use an adjective to camouflage our inability to pinpoint our needs/ wants. So the solution to this problem lies in us constantly attempting to be very very specific about what we seek. Many of our troubles would simply vanish if we are clear in our mind about whatever we aspire for. Let us say we want to give a donation. For this we need to be clear as to whom we want to give it for, the amount one wishes to donate and the cause for which we are donating. The answers are never easy and often frustrate us for then we end up being indecisive.

The problem with being unsure and indecisive is that we are then guided by the ‘herd mentality’ where we succumb to the pressures of following those who are in a majority. Career choices for example confuse youngsters who have just finished their schooling. Fortunately for many they are clear about the subjects that they dislike so by default they atleast reject those career options involving subjects they dislike. This brings us to a wonderful technique of zooming in on your preferences by the elimination route. This simply means examining an choice and eliminating it because you are uncomfortable with that option.  Our choice of friends is often a result of the elimination of people who we are uncomfortable with.

The real downside of not being clear and standing up for what we really want is that we very often end up choosing a compromise option which may solve one problem but can spark of a multitude of other problems.  E.g We laze around instead of studying and then decide that for lack of a choice we have to copy in the exam. Obviously copying is fraught with danger of being rusticated and failing ignobly.  Many people are caught in the rut called a job simply because we hate the alternatives or fear them. If only we were more clear as to what job would make us happy and contented we would first attempt to find that in the current job before scouting around for what we want.

Remember: Although our intellect always longs for clarity and certainty, our nature often finds uncertainty fascinating.  Karl Von Clausewitz

Try this:

  1. Currently the FIFA World Cup is on. If you had to choose the Winner how will you go about it? What considerations will influence you choice of picking your winner?
  2. Attempt to make a drawing of your dream house. Make it as elaborate as possible with no budget constraints in mind. Next jot down the location of the house and pick a neighbor from the following options – your in laws, your former girlfriend / boyfriend, your boss

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