Monday, July 24, 2006

Curious about Clarity - How Clear Are You about What You Want and What You Do or Are Doing?

Clarity affords focus.” - Thomas Leonard

I see clarity. To survive we need to view people - especially ourselves - with accuracy.” - Barry White

That inner voice has both gentleness and clarity. So to get to authenticity, you really keep going down to the bone, to the honesty, and the inevitability of something.” - Meredith Monk

Late yesterday I returned home from the National Storytelling Network’s annual Conference. I feel it was one of the best of the seven I have attended. It not only offered, as they all do, a reawakening of relationships with other storytellers, the sharing of all kinds of wonderful stories, and lots of laughter and joy, but it also brought me clarity about my storytelling and what storytelling means to me. How did that happen?

I am asking myself the same question. Both of the workshops I attended were led by storytellers who asked us thoughtful questions about what is the core meaning of our storytelling. We were challenged to work on our vision and our approach. And it was no namby pamby challenge either.

Now, I am going to challenge you. How clear are you about what you want? A great majority of those who try to set goals have no luck, because they do not know what they want. Moreover, if they want something, they really don’t have enough desire to keep working at it until they achieve it. This is why you and I have goals that we never accomplish.
  • "So in order to achieve clarity and be fully and positively engaged in what you're doing, you must (1) know the goal or outcome you're intending and (2) decide and take the next physical move to propel you in that direction.” - David Allen
  • It is still not enough for language to have clarity and content... it must also have a goal and an imperative. Otherwise from language we descend to chatter, from chatter to babble and from babble to confusion.” - Rene Daumal
  • Your mind, while blessed with permanent memory, is cursed with lousy recall. Written goals provide clarity. By documenting your dreams, you must think about the process of achieving them.” - Gary Ryan Blair
  • Although our intellect always longs for clarity and certainty, our nature often finds uncertainty fascinating.” - Karl von Clausewitz

A great number of the quotations I checked for clarity, referred the form of writing communication. How clear is your communication through writing and/or speaking?

  • "Take advantage of every opportunity to practice your communication skills so that when important occasions arise, you will have the gift, the style, the sharpness, the clarity, and the emotions to affect other people." - Jim Rohn
  • "And how is clarity to be achieved? Mainly by taking trouble and by writing to serve people rather than to impress them." - F. L. Lucas
  • "Anything well written with good language and clarity and honesty is worth doing. It comes out of the same tradition as Shakespeare." - Michael Moriarty
  • "They place great stress on the clarity of our language for expressing nuances and showing subtleties." - Bernard Pivot

At this point, I hope you are asking yourself about the clarity of the life you live and the work you do. Let me leave you with these thoughts:

  • Clarity is the counterbalance of profound thoughts.” - Marquis De Vauvenargues
  • As I began to discover my own truth and endeavored to possess it with clarity, I became more and more alienated from that which my companions held, or professed to hold.” - Juan Goytisolo
  • Witness the contents of mind, the visions and sounds, the thoughts, as clouds passing through the vast expanse - the sky-like nature of mind. The rootedness of Being is in emptiness, clarity and awareness: unborn, unspoilt, stainlessly pure.” - Alex Grey

Have a great and clear week!