Life is busy. The more we engage, the busier we get. The more we serve others, the more opportunities we are given to help. Success begets success. However, all the glitters is not gold, and it is essential we learn to discern an opportunity from a distraction, so we don’t waste our precious time, talents, and talk.
The world is continuously changing, and we must consistently reinvent, however, we want to be sure we are mining real gold and not fool's gold before we act. Here are some quick points to consider before entering a new path:
- Does it stretch you or vex you? Opportunities invigorate; distractions rattle. There is a difference between anxiety and fear. Anytime we push outside our comfort zone there will be an element of uncertainty. However, when it's a right opportunity, the possibilities excite and ignite our values vision, which in turn sparks our feelings of confidence and behaviors of adaptation. Distractions stress us out and drain our motivation.
- Do you feel enveloped or swamped? When an opportunity presents itself, so will the designated traveling partners. To go where we’ve never gone, we’ll need the Sherpas to act as our guide and provide the necessary resources before scaling the mountain. This support could be in the form of wise counsel, financial funding, seasoned partners, and trained technicians. A distraction will leave you feeling alone, lost, and uncertain.
- Trust your gut. Examine your heart and dive deep into your underlying motives. This takes an incredible amount of self-awareness and recognition of our own biases. There have been times where I was moving down the path of opportunity only to awaken in the middle of the night with a terrible sense of foreboding. The next morning, I called off the deal. The times when I ignored my internal compass, I veered horribly off course.
- Go off into the wilderness to rest and retool. We do not operate like our operating systems. Before any significant decision, the wisest people I know go into days of prayer and fasting so they can gather clarity. You can only hear when it's quiet. Too much background noise will disrupt the homing signal and garble the transmission. Make sure you get entirely still so you can listen to the answer.
If you take time to unpack these four points, you will discover if the newest venture is a true calling or an inevitable falling. Clarity and discernment are essential to making quality decisions that will move you and your business to the next level.