I spend a lot of time thinking about things.

Seriously, A LOT of time.

As a coach and an introvert, part of this comes with the territory. (And part of it comes from my need to manage risks, which is essentially about control, but that’s a topic for another post…)

If I’m not mindful (and even a teensy bit ruthless) about it, I can stay stuck in thinking mode indefinitely, weighing the pros and cons of various options, researching and contemplating and planning, but never actually getting anywhere.

This is especially true when I feel like I need to make an important decision – there’s nothing like a weighty decision to trigger my analytic brain into overdrive.

One thing I’m continually discovering at a deeper and deeper level is that clarity does not come from thinking.

No matter how long I think, how many options I weigh out, how much research I do, I never really think my way clear.

In fact, trying to think my way clear is like trying to sail to a distant land without ever setting foot on a boat. Sure, I can imagine what the trip might be like, but thinking about the journey isn’t the same as taking it, and we don’t learn the art of sailing from the safety of the shore.

I’m not saying we shouldn’t think, not by any means. Thinking has it’s role to play for sure, and I’m all for ‘just enough’ research so that I can narrow the field.

But there comes a point where we just have to pick a direction and get moving, and trust that we’ll get clearer as we go.

I’ve been experimenting with this for awhile now, and can attest that clarity comes from action.

We don’t think our way there – we pick a direction and start moving, and pay attention to the signs showing us where to go next.