In the last few months, my processing time has slowed down and I have acquired a taste for reflecting. I wish I knew how I understood that it was okay to do so. We get a few revelations where the last piece of the puzzle fits perfectly and we can finally see what we’ve known all along but were not able to act upon. For the first time, we make the truth ours.
I am not a person to easily open up to others. This blog has given me the opportunity to process my thoughts and archive my findings without overwhelming anyone, including myself. After anything significant occurred in my life, I felt the need to share to my small circle. It is important for the relationship to keep the other side up to date. Lately, however, I have been prioritizing reflecting. Thinking calmly about a situation helps me separate my feelings from my wants and responsibilities, and gives me the clarity to act appropriately. This compartmentalization puts all my discomfort in one or two boxes, instead of all over the circumstances or on a person.
The phrase that encourages me to wait to share my thoughts and feelings is, “once I tell them, they will know.” I can never take it back. If I feel that I misunderstood or have finally cooled off, I cannot erase that conversation from history. While I am processing it, I have control over how much is out there and for my sake can determine if it is even worth sharing. This even goes for expressing my feelings during a conversation. If I don’t feel comfortable saying something, I can wait, think about it, and revisit with the person in question.
After using that phrase to understand an event, I move on to the other side of the coin: “knowing now or knowing later will not affect them.” If I wait a day, will my circle hurt? If I wait a week, will it change anything? I believe that 99% of the time, it won’t. Giving myself time to come off whatever emotional ride I was on, allows me to see truth versus assumptions, and come to the sharing table with a more clear perspective. The amount of influence someone might have is reduced, and I might not feel swayed to do or think something I might not be comfortable with.
My dad would tell us to not rush into decisions. I would at times think, “I already know what I want.” What was really happening is that I thought I knew what I wanted. In the end, most decisions were fine, but there were other times where I acted out of spite or was basically on my way into something I didn’t think was right. I would have greatly benefitted if I would have given it an extra hour or day to allow the issue to sink in, consider all possible points of view, and make a more informed decision.
Reflecting is something I want to do more of. I want to take the time to inventory my life, organize my day, and have a more balanced perspective of myself. I can only do this by taking the time to understand on my own my reality. A community is important and I believe that relationships are fed through regular communication. However, rushing without giving ourselves time to understand our reality can do us and our relationships more of a disfavor than we think.
Time can be on our side. We just need to let it act.