Black, White, All Or Nothing?

Pizza or pasta? Tea or coffee? Should I stay or should I go? Over and over I catch myself paralyzed by the same thinking-pattern: I’m searching for the best solution, the perfect answer, the right decision, the only path that leads to happiness.

I beat myself down over and over again for having not enough discipline – for not being “straight” enough. If I’d just learn another language/did more yoga/became a software developer/travelled to place xy… my life would be perfect. Violently I’m pondering every possibility. The restaurant (Pizza or Pasta?) is just one venue of competition. The toughest fights I stage within myself. “Should I start a new job?” “Should I work this or that job? “Should I travel to Portugal or Indonesia?” – to name just a few of my ridiculous first-world-problems.

Why am I struggling so much with making decisions? And why am I beating myself down for not doing the “right” things? I have a suspicion: It is all in my head! The problem is, that my mind still wants to convince me that there is one perfect decision. If I’d just consider ALL available data I couldn’t go wrong. But you know what? There is no such thing like “all data”. How can we know the outcome of a decision in advance? How do we know who we are going to meet, who might changes our “path” in an irreversible way? How do we know which outlook awaits us behind the next curve of this windy road called life?

A lot of times I’m trying so hard to make the “right” decision that I’m loosing sight of what I actually want. Sometimes I want none of the things, I think I want. 

My own thoughts keep me trapped somewhere between past and future –  but for sure they hold me back from the now. Often I’m loosing contact with the present moment completely. And wait a minute – this moment is all that we have!

It is time for me to really accept that there is no “right” decision – for sure not when it comes to choosing pizza or pasta, but what about the “real” decisions? Where do I want to live? Should I change my job? Should I quit? Travel? Get pregnant? Break up? Get married? Stay single? And what exactly should I do?

The word “should” already implies that the answers to these questions often enough are not mine. They are the answers of society, my family, my friends or my “peer-group”. (if this is a word)

The truth is that we have to create our own reality by walking our own way. As long as we are searching for the “right” answer or our “recipe to happiness” we forget to live.

We will probably never find what we are looking for – but what we will find is even more thrilling and beautiful: surprises, connections, friendships – the pleasure of the unknown.

If we stop thinking black or white we will discover how colorful this world is.

So how am I going to overcome this narrow decision-making-fight? I’m following my excitement by doing what I enjoy doing, by following my heart and dropping my thoughts completely.

The difficult part is to give an ear to my heart, my inner voice. The chatterbox in my head still likes to dominate, but my heart wins with trust and patience.

 

 

Uli

 

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