Who are you? Taking a dive in to self-discovery

My favorite question to ask myself and challenge others with is who are you becoming?
So who do you want to become? Sorry too soon…
A bit pretentious I realize, so let me back up a second and start with figuring out who you are. I am going to enter into unpaved territory. This is not a common path to take, an adventure that does not get taken too often, and a territory that only a few value to venture into. This is my call into the wild discovery of who we are. It is found each step further into the forest as the tree’s get thicker and thicker.
The reason I say this question is a bit pretentious is because asking who you are and experiencing who you are tend to be very different. Not only because the way we are perceived by others is different than how we view ourselves, but because who we are is still yet to be discovered. To assume that you know who you are is quite presumptive. Not only does it take extended effort to step into self-discovery, but it takes a step into the unknown. This is scary territory. Few dare to venture to this land. This is like the big Rottweiler that looks scary but you make friends by offering a treat and you find out she is just a big teddy bear that wants love.

Why are we so scared of ourselves
Somebody once said the only thing I fear is fear itself. Discovering who we are is a big responsibility because when we find out who we are then we actually have to act from that place; that is if we want to have integrity. We are not held back because we fear pain but we are held back because the fear of having to take action. Granted we get caught up in seemingly more important immediate things, but I find nothing more important than knowing who you are. It helps to have somebody affirm a character trait, believe in us, walk with us in this journey, and be there to catch us when we fall. This is not realistic for all of us and if we wait for this it will not only disappoint with procrastination, but it will perpetuate a victim mentality of reminding us of what we do not have. The reality is that self-discovery is here and it is available now, and it is quite easy if you give it persistent attention.
I believe we all want to know who we are; some of us just settle on something sooner than others.
Easy come easy go are you able to say no
When we say no we are making a decision, a boundary, and a declaration of who we are and what we value. Saying no is saying that I am not going to go along with the status quo; I am going to stand for what I want to be known for. Do not stand for what you believe in; stand for what you want to be known for. This question begs the question of who do you want to become, but we will get to that one later. right now we want to know who you are and how you can discover what it is that makes you, you.
There is no way possible to find out who you are without either stepping into the past or stepping into the future. Since we are going to talk about who we want to become later let’s talk about what has shaped us into who we are. It is said we are the person of the 5 people we spend the most time with. As somebody that does not believe in black or white thinking, there are definitely more things that shape us, for instance negative memories as well as positive memories. What I want us to be able to reflect on is the voice that we sometimes hear or the ways we think we are being perceived by our actions. What identity do we take up?
The exercise that I take people through in this introduction to self-discovery is quite simple, but helpful for us to think through before we move onto the next step. This is part 1 of 3 on self-discovery.
I want you to pause, be present and take 2 minutes of your time and write down who you are by simply saying…
I am Matt Lowe
I am 26
I am a son and a brother
I am thoughtful
I am scared of disappointing people
I am worried if my lips are soft
I am ready for kids
I am timid when approaching women
Now your turn
Go ahead, Fill a piece of paper.

Say who you are, it is just you. I want us to be comfortable being us. It often is uncomfortable seeing who we are. It is quite vulnerable and can be scary to be honest with ourselves this much. Some of the things could not even be fully true but they are still an aspect of you in your life. When you think of who you are, what do you identify with and what comes up.

If you are comfortable sharing who you are in the comments, I have found it to be a very powerful thing to share who we are.
I want to remind you that this is part 1 of 3, so these things that you identify and see yourself as will not be what identify you. . We will be diving deeper and more intently in seeing how we can change who we are and get past limiting beliefs.
Until then
Peace to you and be present with yourself and with others
If you would like to read more, here is an article that guided me in self-discovery

Do You Really Know Who You Are?

A better way to answer the “what do you do” question

What do you do?
I have a ranty confession. Every time I hear this question I cringe and every time I get asked this question I avoid answering in the way they expect it to be answered. The reason I do not like the question is because it defines us by what we do instead of who we are. Most of the time this question gets asked when you first meet somebody and a label is automatically established. The label says if you have made it, if you have prestige, if you are a hard worker, if you are respectable, and it represents your importance; all based on what you do.
This question drains me to ask and it kills me to answer. The conclusion is made of what is important to us by what we do for work and that is such a small part of who we are. We have gotten so good at manipulating this so we seem important by coming up with fancy sounding titles that are just elaborate words that have fake prestige to them. I understand employers want their employees to have importance in their title and to have professionalism, but some titles these days are getting out of control and you have not made it unless your name includes an abbreviation or acronym.
Making lemonade with lemons
We can try as hard as we can to avoid and change the environment that this question is asked, but we will have to face it. I have accepted this and believe it or not I have a way that we can use this question to create a powerful impact. It does take some creative action, but it will be powerful.
For me, I would tell people I am a writer and life coach, some of the time I would get that is nice with the possibility of a follow up question about what I write about since writers are always writing something interesting. Things changed when I started to tell people I help champions become champions. I have not changed what I do, but I changed how I portray myself. The first is bland and boring and the second is helpful and transformational. People love people that serve to help others and it is a powerful bonus when they hear the transformation of somebody becoming a champion. To be honest, I took this from somebody, but it is something worth sharing and using because it works in a powerful way.

How it works
The problem at the beginning was that I did not like how our work defined who we are and the figure out who somebody is we use the question what do you do. It puts the emphasis of identity on what you do and have done instead of who you are. When you hear I help champions become champions, you hear somebody being helpful, believing the best of others, somebody that believes in transformation, and somebody that is in the service of making change. When I say this it shows that I believe I have purpose and it shows that I believe others have purpose. It puts emphasis on who I am instead of what I do.
This is hard work to figure out because it takes a little soul searching and step outside of the status quo, but that is the responsibility of being creative. Fortunately it comes easier than you think. Here are a few questions for you to figure out how you can be more powerful in what you do.
1 I help blank
2so blank
3 can do blank

This is just a suggested path, as you notice the example I gave of “I help champions become champions does” does not have the words so or can. It has an action, it has a person, and it has a transformation.
Examples of this can look anything like the ones below
I care for new moms getting through the stresses of the infant phase.
I watch over the trends of sales to enhance the potential of sales in our company
I lead a team of engineers to create innovative products to make medical procedures more safe.
I train and invest in employees to be effective and purposeful in the work place to maximize their potential.
These are much more powerful than the alternative responses to
Answering the do you do question in this way is much more powerful than saying I am a…
Pediatrician
Sales analyst
Bio engineer
Or
Human resources.

In the comments give me your most powerful response to what do you do.
Show me that we can transform the way we answer this question
If you want to know more about this transformative process send me an email at restoringmyvision@gmail.com and I can give you a call to help you have a more powerful impact.
We can set up a free 30 minute consultation to see what it is that is holding you back from becoming who you want to be and being who you want to become
In the comments give me a powerful example of what you would say to the question
What do you do, so you show you have purpose and meaning?

understanding the privileges of life coaching

We need to talk about privilege
I have somethings to admit and let you in on. This idea of restoring vision is somewhat pretentious. What I mean by that is that it is quite assuming of our social position. Jus the basic level that I have the time to write, coach, and think about restoration, passion, and vision is a privilege. I am not saying this is not work and I am not doing my part in the world, but there are some privileges that have gone unrecognized. If restoration is going to be practiced and utilized in its full capacity then the privileges will have to be recognized, considered, and adapted into the plan of reaching and teaching. Here are 5 privileges that we need to be aware of when restoring passion to pursue our vision from the perspective of the coach.
1. Free time and money
Time is money and money is time. As a coach there is an assumption that you have the time to absorb the information I have to give and the process is trustworthy enough to take your time and money. If I think of somebody that is economically disadvantaged, racially disenfranchised, or under resourced by any other means; I probably do not think they would be able to financially afford the investment to pay for coaching to pursue their dreams, their passion, and their one true desire. Most working class people can not afford coaching programs like this because they are so expensive. Often times in the entrepreneur world I hear this being talked about as a “target audience”. If the population of people does not fit your goal than that is not your audience, is what I hear, and that sucks for a large chunk of the population that gets left out.
The privilege is that I can financially afford the time to think, process, and teach these coaching programs
Within this same presumption is the presumption of time. It is one thing to financially be able to afford it, but can you afford it with your time. When people are under resourced they often spend their time working 2 or 3 jobs to get by, maybe providing for a family, just to get through each day. No big dream pursuits, no ambitions to create the next nonprofit that changes the world, just the drive to take care of themselves and their family to make sure there is food and a roof over their heads. Yes there are dreams of things that would be nice, but dreaming about nice is not too wise. My privilege is that I can speak to people that have time to think about the big picture vision of life, coach them to their goals, and to figure out ways to not be held back by everyday struggles and responsibilities. Sometimes I look up to this way of life; it has dedication to family and faithful work. The simplicity of it is envious from the outside, but we can not assume that their struggle is any different than ours because we all have the same amount of hours, but different resources that display our privilege for opportunities.
2. Coaching will do it
I think as a coach, I as well as many other coaches think we have what it takes to get you to your goal. coaches that try to promote how well rounded their research is , which is in-turn their practice, without listening and investing in the person first; is that it comes off as narrow minded. It assumes that the only thing holding the person back from their manifest destiny is themselves. I believe this is true, but not all the time. Coach’s talk about it is how you organize your life and figure out your priorities. I do believe everyone can benefit from a coach, but a coach will not get everybody to their goals. Sometimes there needs to be training, a tool developed to cross a physical barrier, and the most restrictive and frustrating limitation of being lawfully or culturally segregated so opportunities are not available
This reminds me of the cool Runnings story. The Kenyan bobsled team and how unlikely this group of 4 Kenyan men from Africa would make it to the Olympics in an ice bobsledding competition. It hurts when this presumption is racially bias and we discount people based on what we think their capabilities are based on their race. The Kenyan bobsled team had to overcome this in their journey to the Olympics. Coaches can only do so much. They can not make the goal happen, the dream come true, or the restrictions disappear. The coach can guide, a guide is helpful, but guidance is only responsibility a coach can fill. We would be foolish to think there is more a coach can do. Let’s embrace our privilege of being a guide and be realistic with what our help is as a coach.
3. Vision is everything
As much as this is something I promote and believe in, it just is not true. Some will say there needs to be a decision. You need to decide that you want change before change actually happens. Without turning this in a chicken before the egg standoff I want to emphasis that vision is important and is a turning point, but there are many other vital impacts that affect your ability to move forward. I have the privilege of talking about vision because it is an all-encompassing aspect that I can use to speaking to various avenues of change. Vision is almost a synonym for belief, identity, social change, and goal setting because it speaks into each of those areas.
The most common way that this privilege gets portrayed is by people saying things like just imagine your dream and let that guide you and be your power, or you need a vision of your goals before you can go pursue them. These things sound good but they are not exactly true in the simple sense they are being portrayed. Yes you need to have an idea, but making vision the focal point is not necessary and comes from a place of privilege. For most people, just putting one foot in front of another is hard enough, so I do think vision is important, but when we put it in front of decision making and taking action the priority gets messed up. In the coaching world vision helps you to dream and think in the big picture. Seeing life in the big picture is a privilege for most because the small picture of essential task does not bury them so they have the privilege of having the ability to dream.

4. Speaking from an a-historic perspective
A-historic means that the present is only view through the lens of the present. When folks look for a coach they are usually looking to get over a hurdle to accomplish a goal or just get life straightened out to pursue something richer and fuller. Most take the perspective of what is your goal, where are you at now and what do we need to do to get there. Unfortunately this will lead to burn out and disappointment in the long term. This framework only works for so long. When looking at the future the past needs to be incorporated to work in the present. The most powerful journeys of transformation are the ones that dive in the past and are determined to reconcile with it and not repeat it.
It is the nature of coaches and counselors alike to stay focus on the present and meet you where you are at. I understand the frustration of going to a doctor, a therapist, or a coach and spending an hour on the history when they did not even use the information or even more frustrating when they do not use your history and just guess about the condition and the solution. It takes the dignity and humanity out of the person. The privilege is being the one in control because the coach, counselor, doctor, or whatever is the one getting paid. If somebody says they take a holistic approach make sure they take a full holistic approach that includes the past because it is important to listen to the whole person.
5. Not everybody wants to change, change is not for everybody
This is the hardest one for me to grasp. For me this goes beyond my practice of coaching and into my personal values. I believe everyone has the ability to change, but the reality is that not everyone wants it to happen. The desire has the meet the ability. This is frustrating because potential is left on the table when a fuller more abundant life is possible. Coaches promote change and make money off of change. They are in the results business, so if the customer does not notice or feel the change in their life then business will die, so there is in an invested interest in change. The ability will always be there, but the desire is the one that is always in question. It is a privilege to always be in the mindset to pursue change. For the majority of people they have to just rely on their abilities to get by in life and take care of the priorities of putting food on the table and maintaining a roof overhead. I ask many people what their passion/desire/ dream is and many of them do not know, not so much because they have not dream, but because their dreams have been limited to their abilities. So the dream is to be the best mom, just to be happy and a good person, to have a good family, to love and care for my children. For most of us our abilities have pushed down a path and the path is not something that we consciously choose. Some people work on just being present with what they have, which is a dead end for a coach because there is nothing more abundant than be grateful and present with what you value.

The only question I will leave you with is do you like what you value or is there something more that you want for life?
I find it important to recognize privileges so that we do not take things for granted. I believe this practice has helped me be more compassionate and allowed me to walk the extra mile in the other person’s shoes.
If you have a coach, share this with them and see what they think
If you do not have a coach let these questions set in a see if any of these hold you back from having a coach.
There are people out there that are willing to lessen their privilege, so that you can have the ability to pursue your desires and dreams.
You are powerful where ever you are and I hope you are able to find abundance where ever you are at.

what we need to know about the vision of our dream

What is vision and why does it need to be restored?

I would like to say something definite and fancy like if you do not have vision then you do not have anything, but is not true. We can walk and act without a vision, at least a grand vision.
A vision is a big picture goal or an imagination of an activity that has yet to take place. Vision can be small which leads to small victories, but also they can be big which are usually planted in living out a particular value or belief.
When we talk about restoring vision we are talking about restoring a possibility, an identity, or perspective. We can walk and act blindly and will be like a duck with a broken leg spinning in circles. Without vision our impact will be limited. Going from task to task is tiring because each time the ignition needs to get restarted. Vision keeps us continuing to drive forward.
When we look at pro athletes and people with seemingly magical talents we see something special because we can not imagine how they got their talent. Hard work can be seen, but internal drive can not. Internal drive is fueled by vision. Vision is the one thing that transcends talent and hard work.

The big things in life

The question then turns to what do we build our vision from and how do we get vision. The important part for you to remember for yourself and the people you interact with is that your vision is unique to you; nobody sees the world like you see the world. This means you have a unique impact and purpose on this earth. I like to think of this in the frame of a story. This is why I use the phrase restoring my vision.
Vision is a journey and is being shaped and formed by each experience. The restoring aspect is the process or the silent step of faith into the unknown.
I would like to be able to give you a particular outline with a step by step method of how to get your vision back to the clear 20/20. I can tell you what goes into vision, but that is as close as I can get because the restoring of vision is a journey and an active pursuit. There are particular experiences that will come and people will go; change is inevitable, which is why vision is intersectional.

Values

You have your values and this shows how you walk. Not the particular stride, but the wake that comes from the path you have blazed. Your values guide you, but your values are also guided by your beliefs. Sometimes people confuse beliefs and values. We have to value what we believe to let it be something that impacts us and a value comes from a personal experience. This personal experience can be a momentary situation or it could be a past memory on repeat. Values can change and develop but are defined by what we believe to be true about our reality.

Identity

You are what you eat, well not really, but you are what you think you are. This intersects with what you believe, but is different than a value. Identity is the inner workings of you coming out. Some refer to identity as a sense of worth, your inner foundation, the rock on which you build your life on, or for our purposes who you see yourself as. Many different positive and negative things can be our identity and it can be slippery or it can be stable. Who we are can always be changed and developed because there is a rhetorical question that life begs of us and that is who are you becoming. Identity is the answering of this question

Desires

Desires and wants have a bad reputation. This is something I think should be restored and can be restored. If we always view desires and wants as negative things or something that needs to be controlled then we will just come to fear our inclinations. this can turn to a deep rabbit hole, which I have found so many people stuck in. it is so hard to get out and embrace our inclinations. Yes there are bad motives and selfish desires, but what about the opposite side. You have desire for joy to serve, to understand, to be in community, to be with others and to give yourself. Often times these motives are misunderstood by others and they are misunderstood by ourselves. This is definitely a cultural and structural pressure that has contributed to this ignorance of a vital aspect of your humanity. It is an essential part of vision because it is the collision of knowing who you are and being able to voice it. If we can not be comfortable saying what we desire and want then how are we going to be comfortable dreaming and pursuing an ambition? Yes, again this gets back to what you believe about yourself and if you feel you are worthy enough to dream. If we can not get excited about a desire or ambition then how are we supposed to move forward?

Drive

Drive is that internal aspect that people do not see and is only recognized by those who see the daily dedication of faithful hard work. The internal drive is often referred to as a flame. This flame can be low and it can be blazing. The people with the blazing internal drive have been able to make sense of life in a seemingly unique way. I believe this unique way is available to anyone. The internal drive is found from matching your purpose, which is all the previous things that have happened in your life, with your identity. When your identity falls align with your purpose it is like a rush of air for a fire. This is what people call passion, full of life, exuberant and full of abundance. We often refer to these people as the glass half full people, but in actuality there glass is full and over flowing. This is why they are able to develop their skills the way they do, live with so much vitality, and love each person as if they are the last person on earth.

This post has been quite long, but vision needed to be explained so that we can see how to see. Each one of these aspects can have an entire book written about them and can be expounded upon in many coaching lessons. The important part to remember is that they are intersectional. As your virtual vision coach I want to be with you in this journey of discovery. I will be with you as you are discovering what it is like to have clearer vision.
In the comments share which one is the hardest for you or the one that is the greatest struggle, but also if you had this 20/20 vision what would you do with it, what would be your big vision?
Tell me how you are restoring your vision