Who are you? Designing your personal Decoder Map

You can’t possibly change your life until you know who you are.  If you make an appointment with an expensive  psychologist or psychiatrist, your first session would be consumed with his attempt to find out “who you are”.

If you want to have a successful life that includes plans that work,  you must start by determining who you are.  For example, if you have a horse phobia but you are dating a guy who is an aquestrian champion – the realtionship will never achieve “the best” status until you discover why you don’t like horses.  No amount of “please” or “You’ll do it if you love me”  is going to work until you find the cause of your phobia.  The cause will be encased in who you are.

Well adjusted happy people are consumed by the knowledge of “who they are”.  Can you imagine anyone catching Donald Trump off guard with a question about why he likes or doesn’t like a specific trait?  Successful people understand who they are and why.  Rich or newly famous people get into trouble because they don’t have a clue who they are.  Think about actors and singers who have gone off the deep end.  Watch a television interview and it’s easy to catch them “playing” to the interviewer.  Sadly, anything they say is for the cameras only and not a true measure of who they are.

Successful, contented happy people know their boundaries.  The controls in their lives are based on their deepest internal desires.  They know the friendships and groups that will support their needs and help them achieve their desires.  They are not cruel or mean to other groups but they realize if they try to assimilate into those groups – they will be going against their own happiness and it will not end well. 

It’s as if the well adjusted and happy individual possesses the key to satisfaction.  Both feet are strongly planted on solid ground and nothing – no storm or drama known to man – will shake them from their pinnacle of peace.

You too can be that person.  It all starts with making a personal Decoder Map. 

Who are you?

First make a list of all your desires, needs, education, traits, character, fears, emotions and memories (just the important ones).  Take several weeks to compile your list.  When you are ready draw a circle in the middle of your paper.  If you have a mindmapping program add your name to the middle circle.  If you don’t have a program – you can get a free download at…  http://sourceforge.net/projects/freemind/files/  

Choose points that you feel are most important.  These will become what I call arms.  Your map might look like the following.  (Double click pictures to enlarge)


Most of the time our brains will work in some sort of logical order.  Most of the points on the right side are positive.  Those are things I thought of first.  The positives cause me to think about the negative side of each issue.  I began to list negative issues on the left.  Notice that while I was thinking about the positive trait of “clean cut” – my mind quickly floated into a little deeper clue “I call it classy”.  When these free associations happen, it’s good to write them down immediately.  Each new association will lead you deeper and deeper into your minds sub-conscious thoughts.  Bringing those thoughts to the surface will help you deal with issues that may be interferring with your real and conscious actions.  Most of the time it’s a deep sub-conscious thought that is preventing success in our lives.

For as long as possible try to list your first round of important arms or issues.  Once you feel like you’ve exhausted your list of possible “major” traits – let your mind freely explore everything you can think of that’s connected with that branch.  The following shows one arm of my personal Decoder Map.

   (Double click image to enlarge)


I won’t bore you with the next “six” yes – “six” deeper connections to most all of these arms.  I explored both the negative and positive sides of each line.  My personal Decoder Map is so large it takes two pages – but I can honestly say I know who I am and how to define “me”.

It has taken several months to design my personal Decoder Map.  However, it’s proven to be a great journey and one that has already helped me make better decisions.  I’ve prevented several situations that could have led to serious drama.  When you know who you are and you can predict how you will respond to different situations – it’s easier to walk away and avoid situations that would not be good for you and would not support your goals.  It’s also easier to make decisions that will put you closer to your goals.  I feel more confident and at peace with myself because I know why I choose certain paths.

For even more definitions and instructions about how to design a Decoder or Intervention map – check out all the articles under the tab “BUILD YOUR CASE” at the top of our website.

If you have any questions about how to begin your personal Decoder Map, please e-mail me at debbie@debbiejansen.com


4 thoughts on “Who are you? Designing your personal Decoder Map

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