March 22 – Patience/Decisions

Decisions are arrived at, which implies a journey requiring both time and space. Decision making is a process for which patience is a necessity. We often try to rush ourselves to make a choice when we may not be ready. It takes time to process our thoughts and feelings. We need space to think through a decision. Time and space both require patience.

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On this topic, Anne Wilson Schaef writes:

“We often push ourselves to decisions that have not ripened and are not ready to be made. We castigate ourselves for being indecisive, and others share this opinion of us. We believe that if we were just wise enough, intelligent enough, or clear enough we would know what we want. We do not respect that maybe the reason we can’t make a decision is because we don’t know yet.

For many generations, women have felt that we had to say yes to everything. Then we learned that it is OK to say no, so we have practiced saying no. Unfortunately, however, it is still exceedingly difficult for us to say, ‘I don’t know’ and to feel comfortable staying with our not knowing, until we do know.”

There is something to be said about staying firm once a choice has been made. To waffle back and forth endlessly forever is a terrible thing but being decisive does not have to mean that we are quick to choose. Decisions take careful consideration. We need time to gather and analyze the facts of a situation. Why do we associate being quick to decide with being decisive? Poor decisions are often made in haste. You can’t force something that just isn’t right. Sometimes we’re not ready to make a decision yet, and that’s OK.

It is difficult to admit we don’t know. We associate not knowing with ignorance and perhaps a lack of intelligence. It’s simply not possible to know everything though, and just because we may not know now does not mean that we will never know. Knowledge can always be acquired. In admitting we don’t know, we give ourselves space to eventually find out. We must learn to sit in uncomfortable situations. Being uncomfortable is a part of life that often leads to greater things, such as arriving at a decision eventually in our own time.

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