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Where DON'T You Want to Be?

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Do you know where you're going to? I don't. Some people just have a very clear picture in their mind of what they want to be, what they want to do, how they want to get there, the milestones on the way...

I am kind of envious of this certainty, but not really, because such certainty is bound to breed disappointment when the roadblocks aren't surmountable or when things don't turn out exactly as expected. When your vision is more opaque, it is easier to roll with the punches.

While I don't know where I will be or what I will be doing, say – a year from now – I can tell you where I won't be or what I won't be doing. For me, elimination and negation is a more realistic engine of change. I usually know for sure the path I won't take, the destination I don't want to reach, the pitfalls I want to avoid. When one is able to rule out options with certainty, inadvertently in doing so, one carves a path forward. At the same time some kind of inherent truth or essential part of what drives you – or what you don't want to drive you– is ultimately revealed. I don't know where I want to be necessarily, but I DO know where I DON'T want to be.

Knowing what you don't want to do and where you don't want to go is a useful tool. Elimination is an oft-forgotten skill. It can be used whenever and wherever. So many of us become frustrated and flustered at not knowing what to do next and how to move forward –whether personally and professionally – that we forget that the flip side of not knowing what your destination IS, is knowing what your destination IS NOT.

So the next time that you are stuck, consider asking yourself the following questions:

* Where don't I want to go?

* What is an outcome that I am not interested in achieving?

* What are the milestones that I would like to avoid?

* In relation to where I am now, what is the path forward that I don't want to take?

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