Photo courtesy of Sabrina Campagna
This blog post is adapted from the introduction of my forthcoming book, Clarity, due to be published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd in the first half of 2013.
“If a pond is clouded with mud, there’s nothing you can do to make the water clear. But if you allow the mud to settle, it will clear on its own, because clarity is the water’s natural state.”
Clarity is your mind’s natural state.
For many years, I’ve been sharing this simple metaphor in workshops and seminars with business leaders, entrepreneurs, professional change-workers and private individuals. As people allow their mud to settle, clarity emerges, and they discover they have what they need for the job at hand.
So what is clarity, and why does it matter? How does clarity work, and why do so many people struggle to find it? Most importantly, how can you find the clarity you need and start benefitting from it?
It’s well known that outstanding leaders in every field, from Olympic medal-winners to visionary entrepreneurs, profit from the flow-states that a clear mind brings. With clarity of mind comes the qualities that drive sustainable results. These qualities (and the results they bring) are what individuals and organisations are searching for, often frantically. But due to a simple misunderstanding (and years of conditioning), we’ve been looking in the wrong place until now.
The purpose of this blog (and the book) is to put that right; to correct the misunderstanding, start dissolving the conditioning and help you experience greater and greater clarity, with all the benefits it provides.
So what is clarity? It turns out that clarity is a kind of “universal resource”. When we have a clear head, we have everything we need for the job at hand. Ask a nervous speaker what’s going through their mind when they’re onstage, and they’ll explain their fears, worries and anxieties. Ask a confident speaker what they’re thinking about onstage and the answer’s almost always the same; “Nothing!” The same is true in every field of high-performance, from the classroom to the playing field, from the boardroom to the bedroom; when you’ve got nothing on your mind, you’re free to give your best.
In forthcoming posts, I’ll be sharing answers to the questions above and guiding you in the direction of your own clarity. I look forward to reading your comments and responding to your questions as we explore this fascinating and valuable subject.
I love the speaking analagy about clarity as I experienced exactly this a few days ago as I spoke to a big group of people for the first time in quite a while.
I had absolutely everything on my mind just before and during the start of the talk. In the Q & A session 90 minutes later, having nothing on my mind allowed some really impactful responses to flow to the questions being asked. My mind was calm and able to focus on serving my audience instead of knowing what to say next…
Looking forward to reading the finished article next year Jamie.
Nice one, Franco – this was my experience when I went on Sky TV live for the first time (the Andrew Strausss interview http://www.jamiesmart.com/jamie-on-sky-news-talking-about-innate-thinking/ )
In the green room, my head was full – the moment I went on, my head cleared. Well done with your talk, too – keep up the good work! BML J
I remember the muddy water saying from the Art of living audio's. I remember it often and it serves me well. Congratulations with the book deal Jamie, your passion for wisdom and it's practical use is an inspiration. Keep it up you ray of sunshine you!
Thanks Richard – little did I know back then that I was sowing the seeds for what's happening now. Exciting times! best J
Great introduction, I'm really looking forward to seeing more articles and getting the book.
The opening metaphor is truly apt and I've noticed so many times in the past that 'letting the mud settle' is a great way to prepare for the unknown and approach your fears and frustrations with renewed passion.
Hi Steve, I've been really focused on finishing the book for the past few weeks. More articles to come soon! Thanks for posting. Best J
The metaphor you use to describe "clarity" is wonderful. For therapists and change-workers it is a useful one to use to help individuals settle down, and allow emotions to subside, so that they can begin to think clearer and more cognitively. When people are able to step back and dissociate from their own situations they gain more clarity to be more apt to make better decisions.
Your introduction seems powerful and useful for helping anyone in the health and wellness vocations. Jamie you have a great way of expressing what others intuit into words. Great work friend!
Thanks Bryan – glad you like it. As you'll discover when the book comes out, Clarity is like a kind of "super resource" for every situation. Stay tuned, Best J
As long as you know you are prepared and have a clear understanding of your subject or the skilll you are about to demonstrate, this is truly how to be your best.
Clarity has to do with knowing that you know.
You expect the final outcome to be great. You don't dwell on the details of how you're going to get there. You're excited to experience the process of getting to the final outcome.
George Guarino, CH
Hi George, that's fine for situations where you "know the terrain", but what about when you're venturing into the unknown? IMHO clarity emerges when you've got nothing on your mind. Fortunateky it's possible to have nothing on your mind, even when you're not prepare / don't know. Hope this makes sense. Best J
Jamie, I got a lot from reading the first draft of the book as you released each chapter you had written and look forward to seeing how the final published form comes out. From the content you've released recently, I'm curious if you'll share why all the references to the Three Principles seem to have disappeared and how you came upon the term Innate Thinking. Will the published book be this way? Are you still involved with 3PU?
Hi Dave, I'm glad you enjoyed the first draft. As my understanding has deepened, I've drawn a distinction between A) Syd Banks discovery (the principles of mind, consciousness and thought) and B) The brand referred to as "The 3 Principles". I ran 3PU for 12 months then integrated it into my Inner Circle Programme at the end of the first year. While I'm still passionate about "A" (Syd's discovery) I have decided that I don't want to connect my work to "B" (the 3P brand) on an ongoing basis. This is for a number of reasons. The 3P brand has struggled to get out into the world in a meaningful way, so I've decided to try a different approach. The book refers to Syd, and to the principles of mind, consciousness & thought. But it doesn't refer to the brand "The 3 Principles". It's going to be out in March – looking forward to seeing what you think of it. Best, J
Also, Dave – Innate Thinking contains some points of distinction / differentiation / clarification that are not evident in the vast majority of 3P teaching currently being offered. J
I love the way you have opened with your clarity metaphor. Life sure does get muddy at times. It's good to know that it is just mud and you only have to leave it for it to clear all by itself.
I look forward to unmasking more clarity when your book is published, plus your future posts as mentioned. Thank you for sharing Jamie. Cheers Jan.
Thanks Jan – the book's going to be coming out in March. Looking forward to hearing what you make of it. Best J
Ah, clarity. A state of being and a place to be.
Great work. I'd like to know more about your transition from NLP to Innate thinking; there is much to glean there I'm sure.
Hi Greg – ask away! What would you like to know about my transition? J
I'm really looking forward to the book and starting my exploration.
I'm looking forward to it too, Mal. See you soon! J
Jamie, Really enjoyed your webinar with Nick James and I'm looking forward to your gig on 1st December where I'm looking for even more clarity… See you then. Regards Vince
It was great to see you there, Vince. What are some of the differences you've noticed since Dec 1? J
Beautiful metaphor Jamie – your book's going to have such a deep impact on so many people; I'm very excited for you x
Me too Katie – thanks! Jx
That is quite an article on "clarity" .All your excerpts are a great opening of hopeful n inspirational writings .The kind anyone would love to have to steer a smooth clearing of their problems and truly guide.I wish your book due for publishing will really reach many .
And i have no doubt it will b a huge hit. ALL THE BEST FOR GREATER SUCCESS.
Thanks Sunitha – much appreciated. Jx
Hello Jamie, I have read and watched everything available online and I attended your seminar at Heathrow on Deember 1st. Ireally enjoy what you say and probably mre importantly the way that you say it. Can't wait for the book to come out – it would have been a great Christmas present. All the best for the festive season. Regards Vince
Thanks Vince – It's due for a March release. Looking forward to seeing what you make of it. Best J
Hi Jamie, I really love your illustration, both the words and the beautiful picture, it's something i'll carry with me if I start to feel under pressure 🙂
I've always been amazed at the way you are able to present your ideas and these concepts so clearly in your seminars, never relying on notes but always managing to get your message across. It's the same with others who have been with this understanding for a while, the wisdom is just flowing when you/they're speaking and it makes a huge impact. Looking forward to reading your book soon. Now going to have a nose around your new website…looks great so far! Very best wishes, Deb x
Thanks Deb – looking forward to hearing what you make of it once you've had a nose around. Feel free to reach out if you have any questions. Jx
How am I going to wait till March? 🙂 Is there a launch list yet that I can sign up to?
Jamie I have a question, is there any difference between the book of clarity and effortless evolution?
[…] the last thirty odd years and just started appreciating being here. I started to get glimmers of clarity. Even though there was so much more going on around me I found myself slowing down and being more […]
I can’t get enough of my friend Jamie Smart.