Have you been feeling like you're a little bit off track, and you don't know which direction you should be pointing yourself to go? Maybe you've been sitting here doing a whole bunch of different tasks and you don't see how they can all be united into one path?
Today, I’m going to talk about finding your North Star.
What is a North Star?
Metaphorically speaking, we can think of it like a symbol. A thing that acts as a life guide or a reference point for you. It's really named after the North Star, the Polaris, because it's been fixed in the northern sky and it aligns with the Earth's spinning.
Now, you don't have to remember any of that. But basically, back in the day, right back before we had all the really cool GPS systems and the technology and the electronics that we have today, sailors used to figure out which way they needed to go based on where the North Star was.
You can just imagine how important it was to be able to know “Where am I?” and “Where am I going?”
The concept of a North Star in personal development
When we look at the North Star with your personal growth, you may just think, “Oh yeah, I have a career plan” or “I pick goals to go after” or “I have a theme for the year or word for the year.”
Well, basically finding your North Star in personal development means you're figuring out what really matters to you. When you look at different aspects of your life, how are you going to point those in the right direction?
It is like a symbol. It helps you make decisions, set goals, and deal with challenges with a sense of direction. It's going to give you some clarity. It's life's GPS, your soul’s GPS, maybe also your business or career’s GPS.
It's your personal north star that is going to help you navigate the journey, so if you wonder, “Am I off track? Well, where's your North Star? Oh, it's back over there. Okay, I need to pivot. I need to change how I am going, make different decisions, have different goals, whatever it may be.”
Picture this: maybe someone is all about making their community better. That's their North Star, like everything has to be helping their community be better. If they're doing something that's not helping their community to be better, then it's not a fit for them. Maybe their North Star is around their family and the legacy they want to leave.
If they're looking at other aspects, and they're thinking, “Wow, this is not in alignment with the legacy I want to leave my family,” then it tells them, “I'm off course. I need to make some changes.”
Everything they do, their decisions, actions, and goals, are all aimed at making their community better, their family better, whatever it may be, whatever that North Star is, making it better as the end result.
You're probably thinking, “Okay, that sounds really cool. Yeah, maybe I want a North Star,” or “I have all these other things instead.” Well, I want to let you know that if you don't have a clear North Star in your life, it can lead to feel like you have a sense of aimlessness. You're wandering around with a lack of direction.
If you have ever thought, “Oh, yeah, I've done this. I've done this. I've done this, but I haven't really felt like I've moved ahead, or I haven't really felt like there's a big alignment in what I'm doing,” then you're going to have struggles. There are going to be some potential consequences.
I'm going to go through them now because that's going to tell that saboteur, “Shut up. We really need to get our North Star in place.” Then at the end, I'm going to give you those three questions that you can ask yourself to kind of get that first step towards figuring out what your North Star is.
#1: Lack of focus
I hear this all the time that clients and people I meet, they're like, “I’m just feeling unfocused now.” Without that North Star, you may find it challenging to focus on your specific objectives, your specific priorities. You're not going to have the drive you need to stay focused, and instead you’ll say, “Oh, whatever, I'm just going to do these other things”.
When you know what your North Star is, then you can confidently say, “Okay, I’ve got to do these things. I got to do these steps because I know that this is going to get me closer to that North Star.”
#2: Decision paralysis
Have you ever sat there and been like, “I don't know what decision I should make.” But when you're North Star is super clear. It's your guiding light. It tells you where you should be going. It makes decision-making so much easier.
There's going to be no issue with you making an aligned decision or an aligned choice.
#3: Uncertainty and anxiety
Sadly, a lack of a North Star may contribute to you feeling uncertain and worried about the future. Really, with no clear vision or purpose to work towards, you're going to get in that place of feeling uncomfortable with it and feeling like, “What am I doing? I don't know. I'm not sure.” You don't want to be in that place because that's when you lay awake at night, and you worry, “I don't know, am I doing the right thing? Is this a good idea for me? What should I do here?” You do get into that uncertainty, and that can cause you to have less confidence in yourself in a new path.
#4: Real difficulty in setting goals
The next piece is you're going to have real difficulty in setting goals because if you're going to set meaningful and fulfilling goals, it's too hard without that overarching direction to guide your aspirations. Instead, you're down here in the everyday asking, “Okay, what am I going to do? What steps? What priorities do I have? Where do I need to focus?”
If you don't have that overarching North Star to be able to guide you, it's going to be super unclear. You're not going to know which goals are a priority, and which goals you should even make, which then gets us into the next one.
#5: Lack of motivation
Your North Star gives you your clear purpose. It also will then create more of a passion for you. It serves as a really powerful motivator. Without it, you're really going to experience a lack of motivation and inspiration in your endeavors, your opportunities, and your goals.
Lack of motivation makes it so much harder, then you have to build energy to do things, which means a delay or a complete lack of results.
#6: Feeling like you’re wandering through life
Life might feel like a series of random events because there's no unifying principle. When you have the North Star, it's going to lead you to a sense of accomplishment that you're hitting your milestones. Otherwise, you're going to be in that place of feeling like you're drifting. You're wandering without a purpose.
When you don't have a purpose, you're also going to lack motivation. You're not going to feel that sense of urgency to get things done. You're going to be more apathetic.
#7: Limited personal growth
I hope you care about this one. When you have this North Star, it will help you to have continuous personal development. But without it, there will be a lack of intentional growth and self-improvement. You're not going to see the things you need in order to move forward.
My North Star supporting high-level women to stop flying under the radar, to have more balanced lives and reach the success that they're wanting. I want there to be more female leaders in the world. We're only going to do that by empowering women. So one thing I did was take a stand-up comedy class. I saw how it was going to serve me in helping me give better speaking keynotes, help me with my trainings and my workshops with my clients.
The quality of your personal growth will increase, rather than you paying all this money for things that aren't in alignment with your North Star and aren't going to help you to move forward in the right direction.
#8: Difficulty overcoming challenges
You're also going to have difficulty overcoming challenges. A guiding principle can provide strength and resilience. When you see that North Star, you're going to be like, “Okay, I can get through these challenging times.”
Without that North Star, overcoming obstacles may become more challenging, more stressful, and really drain you of your time, your energy, and your peace.
#9: Strained relationships
You might think of this as like, “Well, this is my life and my North Star”. But really a lack of personal direction might affect your relationships with other people, as it may make it really challenging to communicate your values, aspirations, goals, and desires to them.
When you have that clarity, it's going to be really easy for you to be able to explain why things are important to you and be able to make decisions in your life that would have negatively affected them, like you're not going to go partying or you're not going to go on that trip because you have other priorities and values you want to be in alignment with.
#10: Reduced satisfaction and fulfillment
Without a clear purpose, without the guiding principle of the North Star, there may be a reduced sense of satisfaction and fulfillment, even when you do succeed. That's why some people get to that success point, and then they go,
When you are in alignment with your North Star, when you're moving forward in the right direction, you will feel satisfaction and fulfillment.
What I hope people realize is, life should be measured by satisfaction, not just success.
The 5 questions
Now that you’ve read those 10 consequences, I'm sure you're feeling like, “Whoa, that is a lot, Diane. This is really showing me that it's important to have a North Star.”
Here are five questions you can ask yourself that are really going to help you to start to open up this exploration of figuring out what your North Star is.
Another way that I talk about it in coaching is around your personal statement. Or it's your your passion. It is the main goal, your vision for your life, your mission, the movement you want to have.
Finding that North Star is such a personal journey. I've taken a lot of clients through it.
I just received a lovely email from a client I had years ago, who is following her North Star.
In the email, she thanked me for the coaching we did that gave her confidence, helped her unlock her values and know which direction she really wanted to go in.
Here are five questions you can ask yourself.
With these questions, I hope you write them down and put your answers and then ask yourself again, and then write the answers and then put what else? And then write the answers and see which of the answers to these questions starts to really get into that soul place.
#1: What do you really care about?
You can think of all areas of life, but first look at life in general, what do you really care about? You can also think about, “What is it that fires you up?”
#2: What's important to you?
If you haven't listened, watched or read yet about my journey and how my coach shifted me and how I'm going from the work boots into the sparkly shoes, the sparkly shoes for me is the soul work. It's what's really important to me.
#3: What do you want to achieve in life?
#4: What was the purpose of you being on Earth?
#5: What's the legacy you want to leave?
A way to find your North Star
The Dynamic Your Program is open. This is a really great way for you to have a North Star for this year. By making that one-page plan, that dynamic life blueprint, that is your North Star for the year.
If you want to talk more about, “How do I find my North Star for myself?” or “Okay, Diane, I've done the questions. I got the answers, but I really want to explore this more.” Sure, send me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org. We can talk about how I can support you to really lock in your North Star and give you the clarity, so you can implement the right actions into your life.
I’m not going to say much more about the topic. You now know what the North Star is. The importance of it and the definition of it. You also know all the different reasons why you could have negative consequences of not having a North Star, and really all the amazing benefits to having one.
For this personal journey, I gave you some questions that you can use, that are really going to help you to get things started with that North Star.
I'm putting together right now the topics for 2024. What do you want me to talk about? What are the things that you're struggling with? Or what are some things that you wish you could learn and ask me about? Please send them over to email@example.com. I would love to hear from you.
Read my other blogs:
Get Goaled! Coaching Mastermind
Connect with me