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Getting Your Bearings


Like all good adventures, preparing to Escape Mediocrity takes a little (notice I said a LITTLE) preparation so that the journey actually leads somewhere meaningful.

One of the most critical orienteering skills I ever learned was to get my bearings  – especially if I was about to head out into someplace I’d never been before.

So, I learned to take a deep breath and look around me. I learned to notice details – which way the wind was blowing, where the sun was, how long the shadows were, in addition to the landmarks like buildings or trees. I’d look at a map or a chart and figure out where I was in relation to it.  All these things grounded me in EXACTLY where I was.

Once I was very clear on where I WAS, I could then set my compass and set my course for where I wanted to GO.

So what does my hiking lesson have to do with Escaping Mediocrity?

We need to get our bearings. That means taking a good hard look around at reality and acknowledging it for what it is – reality. Noticing the details of who we are and the people, places and things in our lives – and accepting them. 

There was a time in my life when I refused to do this. I preferred the ostrich approach thinking that if I stuck my head in the sand and didn’t acknowledge it, that would help. Thankfully, I’m older and wiser now.

Here’s what I know about accepting reality and getting my bearings: Accepting reality doesn’t mean I have to embrace it or even like it; it just means I acknowledge it and I don’t fight with it anymore. AND I get critical information by taking in exactly where I AM – information that will actually help me get where I want to GO.

So here’s my Escaping Mediocrity Challenge for you today: plant your feet firmly in reality, take a good look around, acknowledge and accept what is.

Congratulations – you’ve got your bearings. Ready to set your compass and strike out on adventure? Me too!

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