In my last post, I talked about seeing the possibilities one step at a time. Today I want to talk about clarity – once you see a situation clearly, what do you do with it? Where do you go from there? I will start this off by saying I’m not a counselor or licensed in anything at all, I am just a person trying to do my best in life with what I have, so – grain of salt with all of this, okay? And remember that I am a writer, so I think best in metaphors. So here goes…
When you are in the midst of dealing with a challenge, it’s like you’re in the middle of a forest chopping down trees. And you keep thinking – if I just chop faster, or find a different strategy or get more help, I’ll see the clearing. But it’s a fucking forest right, there are a million trees in there! And it’s just you and the axe and if you’re anything like me, your arm gets tired after like, four chops at one big tree trunk and you are not wearing the right shoes so your feet are sinking into the mud. It can feel overwhelming, exhausting and pretty darn lonely.
But if you are lucky, you notice a path that leads you up to the top of the mountain where you can see the whole forest, the village, the sun sinking behind the trees. You look up and see the clouds and the sky. You see it all. Clarity is defined as ‘the state of being clear; transparency; lucidity.” That’s being at the top of the mountain. Many people spend their whole lives in the forest trying to chop trees, so if you ever get to the mountain, you should count yourself as very lucky indeed. 🙂
That’s the good part of clarity. The downside is that you see your problem – your whole situation clearly. This is good, yes, because if you play your cards right, you can start to fix your problem. But it’s hard to survey your life from that vantage point and see that houses are on fire in the village; cows are wandering around aimlessly; the river is flooding; there is no electricity and mold is setting in and everything in the refrigerators went bad. And you realize that while you’ve been struggling to chop at one tree trunk, the whole damn forest was falling apart. Where do you start? What do you fix first? And most importantly – is it even worth it? Or should you just parachute on out of there ASAP?
If you find yourself in this situation, take heart. You can put out the fires. You can rebuild. But you couldn’t do that if you didn’t know. It’s not going to be easy. But spending your life chopping down one tree at a time by yourself is infinitely harder. And lonely. When you get clarity, when you get to the top of the mountain and survey your life, you’ll see the burning houses and wandering cows. But you should also notice that a few houses are still standing. There is still running water. There are still people in the village and they want to help. Just think about your vision for what you want the village to be like. Give yourself permission to hope and dream. See it. Remember it when you feel overwhelmed. You can rebuild. It won’t be easy. It will take time. You will need to learn to do things differently. But you can do it. I believe in you and you should too. It’s scary. But you can do it.
I believe in you. And you should too.:)