After some sizeable change to a friends situation that knocked them on their ass, there was a deep and soul searching conversation had.
We poured over a lot of questions and I let them talk and talk because that’s what they needed to do.
In my observations and as I listened intentionally, I became clear that the questions that they were asking themselves were all about the past.
What could they have done differently?
Why did this happen?
Why did I not see this coming?
All the usual suspects when it comes to thinking things through and reflecting in order to get clarity.
I waited with baited breath to say, ‘what are you going to do about it?’ or to say something like ‘you can’t change the past, so how can you influence the future?’ but the audience wasn’t ready for that.
In fact, in the entirety of that conversation they were not ready for that. The moving on conversation would take place at a later date and with a new perspective brought on by a couple of days sleep and most likely further soul searching. I was ready for it, they were not.
It was their pace to dictate.
I have since learned to move at a pace that is suitable with my own thinking and reflection. I often rush to a conclusion or to rush to an action because I am an operator and I’m built to quickly solve and move on. I do this instinctively even when it’s wrong sometimes or way off the mark… you see, I am doing something, which is better than doing nothing.
Or is it?
With humans, real life situations and with taking a number of other things into consideration, let alone other people’s feelings, then the time to call to action must follow a great and wonderful pause.
Leaning on Stoic philosophy, they knew that the formula for greatness was the ability to turn obstacles into fuel, to see everything as an opportunity to do something.
I love that and do not disagree one bit. Who am I to even debate a philosophy that is two thousand years old and that has stood the test of time.
What I do say, is that there has to be the right time to burn that fuel and for the right reasons, otherwise you could go scootering off into the wrong direction.
I now take the time to look back and plan for the future, but I don’t go racing off. Not always.
I have set out my future plan, picked my investments and planned the next journey but I do need to keep focused on the here and now.
I work to spend more of the time on the present moment. It is not easy and I am a beginner, disciplined meditation and the art of the pause is not easily learned…
But I am a work in progress.
As I am sure you are, we all are.