Just what does it mean to crystallize my thoughts? To me, the picture is of a solution that is mainly water, but you know that dissolved in that water are all sorts of minerals, some of them common, some of then valuable… but all of them, naturally, invisible. The water has claimed them, dissolved them so they are invisible to the naked eye, and unless something is done, they will remain that way indefinitely. So that’s the “process” of crystallization I guess as I see it… so how does that relate to my thought process?

To me, this ability is akin to being able to look at the world as I see it, everything in it, and pull out that information, knowledge, and wisdom that is useful to me… and then to DO something with it. It’s not enough to know that wisdom is “out there,” or that solutions are “out there.” We must get them out of the solution that is the world for us to be their master. It’s not even enough to know what’s IN the solution. For a crystal to become useful, it must be taken out of the solution.

The most obvious way I can think of to do this is to boil away the water. Maybe that’s the ONLY way… I kind of doubt it, but that’s what I see. And for me, that involves getting things WRITTEN DOWN and ORGANIZED. Whether it’s a goal planning sheet that helps me take a specific and attainable goal and break it down into steps or a blog entry that simply forces me to slow down enough to pick the words I’m going to choose, writing is what CRYSTALLIZES my thoughts.

I love to journal. I love to blog. I love to create plans for myself, and for others. Lately I’ve had the opportunity to start incorporating this into my sales process as I recap with potential customers the needs I can help them fulfill, and it has been met with great reviews. It’s actually led me to some new services I hope to offer, making my business more and more of a consultant, value-adding business than just a fire-truck business where we’re constantly dealing with the latest emergency.

At this point, writing almost has to happen for me to get a thought thoroughly developed. Whether it’s a lack of ability to keep the ideas sorted out in my head or just running too fast, I seem to have a rather verbose way of crystallizing thoughts. But then again, you don’t boil all the water out of a pot in a matter of minutes. It is a matter of temperature, pressure, and volume, I suppose.

So I’m making progress here. I’m definitely learning what works for me, and also what adds value to what I provide my customers. I’m learning a few of my weaknesses (too longwinded in words sometimes) and my strengths (ability to think on my feet, review and recap a conversation, and make a plan on paper). I’ve written more over the past several months than ever before, and it’s a joy to go back and watch my journey unfold.