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When It's Time to Do Something, You Will Know

Your personal mind and intellect are the servant, acting on wisdom. When you let them work that way, it's a wonderfully easier way to live and you don't have to predict or prevent anything.
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Businesswoman sitting at table in restaurant with head resting on hand
Businesswoman sitting at table in restaurant with head resting on hand

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At times, it might feel like you need to run your own life.

It can feel like you need to be constantly looking out so that you don't get yourself into some mess. Predicting and preventing problems so that you're not constantly solving problems.

Nearly every day I talk with people who are asking themselves questions like "What if I'm depressed... shouldn't I do something to help myself?" or, "How can I make sure I don't unintentionally mess up this relationship?" or "I'm afraid of this habit/feeling becoming a problem down the road".

They fear things going downhill, but they have no idea what to do today. That's almost always because there isn't anything to do today.

They think there is -- understandably -- because their mind is racing, creating pictures of some horrible outcome they want to avoid.

But if your mind is racing and you have no idea what to do, for the love of God, please don't do anything from that place.

Wait. Let your mind calm down.

Wait until you have some hunch about what to do. Not a mind racing, panicked hunch; a clearer, calmer inclination toward something. Wait, and you will eventually see something more clearly than the confusion you see now.

When waiting leaves you feeling helpless, there's a good chance you aren't seeing one or both of these truths:

1. The human mind (thought/emotion system) is self-correcting.
You were designed with a self-correcting mechanism built in. When you cut your finger, you wait and it heals. The same is true of your mind -- when it is full and fast, creating stories that don't serve you (you'll know you're creating stories by how you feel), wait. Do less, not more, and your mind will return to its more peaceful home base.

It sounds too simple to be true, but the simplicity is actually how we know it's true.

2. When something needs to be done, you'll know.
If your depression reaches a point to where it's time to do something, you'll know. If you're quiet and you're paying any attention at all, you'll know and you'll find yourself doing something about it.

Same with your relationship, and any other mess you fear you may be creating. When it's time to do something, you do something. That's what wisdom does for us. It doesn't leave us worrying, paralyzed in inaction. It has you make a move.

I talked with an actress recently who gets very nervous on her way to auditions. Even through her nerves, something drives her to the audition, parks her car, and walks her in the door. Something stands her up when they call her name and allows her to perform when it's time to perform

Her will, intellect, or personal mind aren't doing that. They are too busy feeling nervous. Wisdom -- something bigger running through her -- guides her while her mind experiences nervousness.

She could sit around all day and say "But I'm so nervous! I can't go!" That's exactly what she would do if she were operating purely from her head. But she's led to her auditions, feeling ebbing and flowing waves of nervousness in the background the whole time.

Something will move you too, when it's time to make a move. The background feeling may not go away, but it doesn't have to. At some point, the tide changes from inaction to action and you do something, if something needs to be done.

If you aren't getting too caught up in mental confusion, it's fairly easy to let yourself be led.

You don't have to be in charge in of all of your own action. If you don't know what to do, there is nothing to do until you see something to do. Sometimes, you don't know what you'll do until you find yourself doing it.

Wisdom takes care of much of that, and uses your intellect as necessary.

You've heard the expression "the mind is a wonderful servant, but a terrible master." Wisdom is the master. The master moves you and speaks to you through guidance, hunches, and thoughts that occur to you from a peaceful place.

Your personal mind and intellect are the servant, acting on wisdom.

When you let them work that way, it's a wonderfully easier way to live and you don't have to predict or prevent anything.