That does not mean that I don’t make decisions (it is not exactly something you can avoid doing), nor is it that I make bad decisions (although that has certainly happened over the years), but I have a problem knowing when enough is enough when it comes to extrapolating the possible outcomes of the choices.
I can get paralyzed by the possibilities.
Once a decision is made, I can follow through without much of a problem, but up until that point I can worry myself sick and silly imagining.
Except on certain occasions.
There have been a few times in my life that I have made a snap decision without thinking much about it.
I have been ruminating for a few months on doing something that, on the face of it, seems like a good idea. I have even convinced myself of it.
You see, I had this decision to make years ago as well. I had it offered up to me on a silver platter once….and without the issues that would make it difficult now.
And I was flat wrong.
The door of opportunity opened and I slammed it shut.
I should have taken what was offered to me and run with it. But I had such an aversion and a visceral reaction to the idea that I immediately thought, “There is no way I am doing that.”
I did not weigh the possibilities and benefits. I did not think about how far ahead it could get me. I did not think about the fact that I may never get the opportunity again. And there may have been a few self-esteem and emotional issues holding me back, about which I was not fully aware at the time (I was 24, give me a break). Ones that didn’t allow me to either recognize my own potential or maximize the opportunities given to me. Had I been confident, thoughtful and more strategic at the time, I would have jumped at the chance.
As a matter of fact, looking back on myself at 24 from 17 years into the future, I realize what an idiot I was. If Greta is ever offered a similar opportunity at that age and turns it down for the reasons I did, I will have a fit. I will do everything I possibly can to change her mind.
No one did that for me. And, on the one hand, I wish someone had. At least then.
But on the other, not so much.
Because the visceral reaction my younger self had to the opportunity back then is the very reason I am choosing not to pursue it all these years later.
In the last 17 years I have learned a lot.
I have learned about responsibility, duty, trust, honesty and work ethic.
I have learned about myself, both my strengths and shortcomings …and hopefully how to both accentuate and mitigate them.
But there is something that tends to get squashed down as you learn all of the above.
Your inner voice.
Your id and ego get pushed around by the superego so much and so often that we not only ignore them completely, but we vilify them for wanting.
We learn to ignore the part of us that reacts and says, “I don’t want to.”
Ezra says that sometimes. Depending on my mood and the situation, the answer to it is either (1) “I didn’t ask you if you wanted to, I told you to. Now go.” (usually used if I tell him to pick up his room or eat his vegetables and that was his response); or (2) “I know you don’t. I don’t want to either, but we have to. So come on and let’s get it over with.” (used to commiserate not wanting to go to school or get shots or the like, but still teaching that some things have to be done no matter what we want).
As we get older, we think more in terms of what I should be doing instead of what we want to do.
How many mothers can sit down for an hour during the day, shut out the world to read 50 Shades of Grey?
How about while knowing that the dishes need doing or dinner needs cooking or laundry needs washing?
Not so many, uh?
Most of us would start thinking about all the things we should be doing and allow that to trump what we want to do. I know it is a small scale example, but Pavolv didn’t have to use the Liberty Bell and a fillet mignon, either, now did he?
Given a few decades of that, it is not surprising that we over extend ourselves and stop listening to the little voice inside that simply says, “I don’t want to” and get bullied by the one that screams, “I didn’t ask what you wanted, now did I?”
But I am not going to do that. I am not going to be pushed into something I don’t want, even if I am the one doing the bullying.
I am going to believe that the reason I don’t want to do this is because there is a better way, another option, an opportunity that I can’t see yet coming down the pike. One that will be infinitely better for me and mine than the one I am passing on.
I cannot believe that at two different times in my life I have been presented with the same idea and that both times my gut tells me no… and then that there is no reason for it.
There has to be another way to get where I want to go. A way that suits me and who I am. I don’t know what it is and I don’t know how to even figure out what it might be. But I have to trust that there is a path for me that gets the same – or better – rewards.
Holy cow, I had better be right about this.