A reader recently posted this question on my blog:

I found this especially helpful: "The longer you hang back and allow yourself to be held captive by a decision that didn’t turn out well, the more difficult it becomes to take a step forward. Adopt a success habit of moving forward ..." Any advice, though, when we aren't entirely sure what a step forward looks like?

Ooooh, that elusive clarity…

Finding clarity requires that you build space into your daily life that allows a deeper connection to where your business and life are calling you to go.

There are several activities you can engage in to foster clarity. Today I’d like to share a few of my favorites with you.

A great starting point: Shake up your normal routine.

A close second: Get out in nature – a place that is clear as can be about what its next step is (the sun will rise, the spring flower will unfold). When I start to get foggy, I step away from my computer and head outside.

I first ask myself some questions about what I want for and from my business and life. One of my favorites: “If I were ridiculously happy and living my best life one year from now, what would have had to have happen to get me to that place?”

Then I disengage from the ‘thinking’ and simply get absorbed in the present moment. I often do this with a walk through my apple orchard.

When I return from my walk/play time, I get out paper and pencil. Sometimes my journal. Often my crayons or markers (really!). Ask your kids - crayons and creativity just go together.

Another prompt that works for me is to use my left (non-dominant) hand to draw a picture of the impact I am trying to have on others. What value do I want to bring to their lives?

Don’t underestimate the power of exploring this question: If you had a magic wand, what would happen over the next year to get you to living your best life? No judging and no left brain “oh, that’s so not practical” allowed in this space!

Now it’s time to let your answers (pictures, words, symbols, phrases) flow. What else? What else? Get it all down.

This is the beginning of your Action Plan. You may find it helpful to share it with someone who has more objectivity and ask them what they see/feel when they look at what you’ve put on paper.

Based on what you’ve created, you could set several goals. If you’ve been mired down in a bog of uncertainty, begin by setting a single, specific 30-day goal. Write it down. Commit to it. Make it measurable. Make it doable with some stretching required.

Pick a goal that lights you up! Embrace the excitement of stepping more fully into doing the things you are meant to do and becoming the person you are meant to be. You don’t need to do it all today. You just need to take a forward moving step. A single step, followed by another and then another, will begin to build massive momentum.

Now the real fun begins … as you flesh out how you're going to get there. What do you need to do on a daily basis to make sure you accomplish your 30-day goal? Don’t let your head hit the pillow at night without taking care of these things! Begin to build your self-trust. Why do you get these things done? Because you said you would and you are a person of integrity!

As you begin to move forward toward accomplishing your goal, you will discover for yourself the greatest secret about clarity…it gets buried under layers of inactivity and self doubt … and is fueled by ACTION!

Author's Bio: 

Mollie Marti is a psychologist, lawyer, and adjunct professor of psychology at the University of Iowa. She brings years of experience in coaching a prestigious list of clients, including Olympians and business elites, to her mission of helping leaders thrive and serve.

Dr. Mollie speaks around the globe on servant leadership and mentorship, resiliency, life design, and business ethics. In addition to numerous academic articles, her business success books have been published in several languages. Her most recent book, Walking with Justice: Uncommon Lessons from One of Life’s Greatest Mentors, is being welcomed as “a timeless handbook for being human.”

She is host of the popular Make an Impact! event, bringing together internationally renowned thought leaders to raise philanthropic funds while empowering innovative attendees to make a bigger impact in a way that fuels their health, relationships, and life priorities.

A passionate advocate for youth and communities, Dr. Mollie directs the non-profit Community Resiliency Project to help communities support their youth and grow their capacity to thrive.

With her unique ability to combine the science of success with the art of exceptional living, she is a frequent media resource (http://www.walkingwithjustice.com/media) and was recognized by The Entrepreneur Blog as one of the Top 25 Business Coaches on twitter (@DrMollieMarti).

Having graduated first in her class in both undergraduate and graduate school, Dr. Mollie continues to learn – and unlearn – on a daily basis. She walks out these lessons from an apple orchard in scenic northeast Iowa where she lives with her husband, their three children, and a large family of pets. Join her for weekly musings on this grand experiment at www.DrMollie.com.