I wish I could say, five decades plus into my life, that I had things sorted. A series of experiences reminds me that any change in my reaction may be reflected in an immediately externally visible to a delayed visible because I am internalizing it more.
In the extremes between handling things perfectly and creating a new crisis, lies a balance that is hard to find. Intuitively I know that perfection is only found in hindsight. It is also obvious, as I implode, that whatever I am doing is not the best solution but I am powerless to help myself. In both I struggle to react any differently than I have in the past.
There are two mantras I have come to embrace that are slowly changing the way I see and response to the dramas du jour.
There is rarely a reason to react immediately to drama. Most will still be a drama five minutes or hours from now. Taking time to reflect, put into context, and let it rest is a useful response. One is not denying, one is considering. For me, the best way to do this is to reflect and consider at the end and the beginning of the day. At the end of the day, I am metaphorically letting go – with Divinity getting an earful of my musings about the situation. At the beginning of the day, Divinity is still my audience, however my views are usually more optimistic.
The accompany mantra that goes with it is one of options. There are never just two options. If there are only two, one has a conundrum. I call this a wicked problem. Life likes to remind me that there are always three or more alternatives to the drama du jour. If I cannot see them, time spent searching first, reacting later is always helpful.
The dramas continue; “the pressure never let up; all the juices of my life dried up.” (Psalm 32.4) In this context, Life offers hope. The question is one of accepting and using it. Seize the day; it’s here.