Are the circumstances of your life ruling over you instead of the other way around?

Jay Coughlan shares several bold choices we can make to rise above our circumstances and redefine our lives.

The first bold choice is to have clarity about your life.

“Clarity is key to all the other choices because it has to do with what you want to do in life. We always ask college kids what they want to do with their life. For some reason, as we get older we stop asking that question, but I think it’s a question we have to ask for our whole life.”

It’s important to have clarity when it comes to knowing who we are and who we want to become.

“What are my values? What kind of relationships do I want to have? What kind of person do I want to be?”

“I find that people don’t spend any time on these things because they’re too busy. We wear busyness as a badge of honor. When I ask how you’re doing, I’m not asking how busy you are. I’m asking if you’re really achieving anything. Most people aren’t because they’re too busy.”

For Jay, it helped him to set concrete goals he wanted to achieve. He says goal setting allows him to separate out the urgent from the important.

“If you don’t have focus and clarity, you can’t separate out the urgent from the important. Then everything becomes important and then nothing is important.”

The second bold choice is to accept accountability.

“To me, accountability is motivational and it’s continuous learning. Most people associate failure with accountability. However, I never view failure as failure but rather continuous learning.”

Instead of wallowing in failure, Jay taught himself to ask three simple questions to help him continue learning.

What did I do right?

What would I do differently?

What am I going to change?

Jay says that we often focus on what we did wrong when we fail as opposed to focusing on what we did right, and what we can do better.

Discover the rest of Jay Coughlan’s bold choices in his book Five Bold Choices: Rise above Your Circumstances and Redefine Your Life.


Jay Coughlan is an author, national keynote speaker, executive coach, and Chief Executive & Managing Director at TruBalanced. Jay lives in Eden Prairie, Minnesota. He is married to his wife of 29 years and they have three children, Alexa, Derek, and Tyler.

Key Scripture: Philippians 4:6-7

Featured Songs: Impossible – Building 429; Press On – Mandisa; Press On – Building 429

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