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Life Coaching: Following Clues

Woman with lit lightbulb on her head -

As featured in Beach Media Magazines

Last time I talked about How to lead a happy life. This time I’m talking about how to find your purpose.

Many times as a Life Coach I would hear someone say, “I don’t know what to do with my life”, as if I could know the answer as to how somebody else should live their life!

I might suggest a few possibilities to see if they rang any bells, but for me to give a definitive opinion would, in my estimation, be meaningless. Because the only person who knows the answer is you, or to be more precise, your heart.

But if you are genuinely baffled, that’s not very helpful. Nor are comments like, “follow your passion,” or “listen to your heart.”

What might be helpful is to describe some of the ways you might find out for yourself. One brilliant way of doing that is by following clues.

When you are in such a quandary, listen for clues as attentively as possible, and when one comes along follow it up unquestioningly. Nobody can know where that clue will lead you. Maybe nowhere, in which case stop and listen again for another clue. But more often than not, something worthwhile will come of it, and it could be the making of you.

The only thing that matters is that you do what you love and love what you do.

I used this technique myself on the day I got my decree absolute from my first marriage. I was broke but free. “What could I do with my life now,” I asked myself. In the emotional and traumatic process of getting divorced I couldn’t remember what it was I’d always wanted to do. I was searching for clues.

Then out of the blue, one day over breakfast a totally unexpected word came in to my head. The word was “boats,” and I began to recall I’d always been fascinated by boats ever since I was a child, and wished I could learn to sail. It was very specific. Somehow I knew I didn’t want to learn to row (I already knew how to do that), I didn’t want to drive a motor boat or anything else. I just wanted to learn to sail.

That was some thirty eight years ago. Now I am sitting here writing this on board my own boat, gale bound in the tiny harbour of Bourgenay on France’s Atlantic coast, where we are taking shelter.

And what a magnificent summer it has been, cruising mostly in hot sunshine around the Bay of Biscay. This is where my clue – my dream – has led me so far and no way could I have had any idea when my clue came and took me by the hand that it would lead to me owning my own yacht! I was a penniless divorcee. How did this happen?

All I know is that cruising under sail gives me a sense of meaning and purpose even though it is obviously an entirely unnecessary and pointless exercise. That’s part of the joy. Now, as a Life Coach, I help others live their dreams – if they have the courage!

This is my point: listening for clues and following them up can give you a sense of meaning and purpose, and radically change your life.

Stop. Be silent and listen. And when a clue comes along, go for it! You have nothing to lose and everything to gain!

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About Dave Robson (66 Articles)
Holistic Coach and Author of The Five Pillars of Happiness; finding ways to help you tackle the world