If you really listen and pay attention to the stories and lessons of your life, you can find them. Click moments.
Sometimes they smack you upside the head, others times you really have to listen. I’m no expert (on ANYTHING), but I can identify many click moments in my life that have shaped it and brought me here to this moment. I went on this listening quest after a guest on my show, Frans Johnassen, discussed his book “Click Moments” and how to identify them in business. The lessons translate into real life.
He said most click moments begin as physical reactions to a situation. I’m often a danger to myself, because I let my gut lead my brain. But as I looked back on the strongest reactions I’ve had in certain situations, they were integral in my decision-making. Yes, freaky.
Start thinking about yours while I tell you mine.
The first click moment I can remember was when I was 15. I spent the summer in Israel. I visited an uncle who lived there. He spoke very little English and my Hebrew was weak at best. He managed to ask me this, “What do you see on TV? What do Americans think of Israel?” When I asked why, he answered, “Because I want them to know what it’s really like, that Israel is beautiful and we are safe and happy and it’s not the fighting they may see on TV.” He went on, “You have to tell them.” Click. I did have to tell them. I knew at that moment I wanted to be a reporter and tell stories.
The next moment. I did become a reporter and told stories, but they weren’t the kind of stories I wanted to tell. I was a young TV reporter in New Jersey, telling stories of brutality, pedophilia, deadly fires, murder, and rape. Every day. Yuck.
One assignment had me in the projects of Newark. Some shooting I can barely remember now. (I know, I’m jaded and awful. I know.) The resident kids ran out when they saw my camera and asked if they could be on TV. As I got shots and plotted which doors to knock on for interviews, I muttered under my breath: “Sure you can be on TV, when I cover your arraignment.” Click. I was an awful, evil, heartless, witch who obviously hated kids and would probably have kicked a puppy at that moment, and who also just realized she could no longer cover hard news. I became a medical reporter the next year.
Next moment. I was re-dating my high school sweet heart, recently rekindled after college (hey, a girls gotta have some fun), and we’d just spent a great weekend in NYC together. I’d gotten back to my parents’ home, (where I was living post-college). Then an hour after I’d left him, he appeared on my folks’ doorstep and said, “I needed to see you.” Then he exhaled, which seemed like the first breath he took in a while. Click. He was the one. And despite recent events, he was. I married him, and we have three amazing kids and had 13 awesome years of marriage together. No regrets.
Next moment. This click was in my gut and painful: the most powerful one I’ve ever had. I knew something was wrong. I knew. I called my husband and told him he had to come home from the gym, it was time for the truth. I asked him for the hundredth time if he was having an affair. This time, finally, he said yes. I gave him an hour, told him to go for a walk (alone) and think. When he came home I said, “Her or us.” He said, “I can’t decide.” I said, “You just did.” Click. Life as I knew it, planned it and wanted it changed.
Click moments are not always easy, but if you listen well they can be your guides. When I arrived at the moments where my clicks guided me, they were often places I did not want to be… or stay. Johanssen says you can’t create click moments, you can’t force them, they arrive when they are ready — and maybe when we are too. All we have to do is listen.
Post your click moments on my Facebook page and we’ll talk about them on Thursday at 8 p.m. Thanks for sharing.