Don’t Just Stand There

You are overwhelmed. You are scared. You are the adult and the decision is yours. Everyday the decisions are yours. All of them. No one is going to tell you what to do.

But you don’t know what to do. You don’t know which decision is the right one. Or the situation is so convoluted there are multiple options but none seems to truly be the right one. Or more than one could be correct, or maybe three. And then even what initially seemed to be the wrong answer starts looking like it might be the best way to go.

“Don’t just stand there,” your brain says. “You are scared. You are uncomfortable. DO SOMETHING. ”

I used to. I used to just do something. Just pick something at random and go with it so that the decision was made and the uncomfortable would stop.

Which had disastrous outcomes. (As you may have guessed)

Then, once upon a time, my therapist said something incredible to me:

“You know, being uncomfortable won’t kill you”

——Mind. Blown. ——

I had to learn the fine art of Sitting There and Being Uncomfortable. The art of Standing Still. The art of Doing Nothing.

Just Stand There. And be Uncomfortable. It won’t kill you. Which still feels impossible after all these years. Like not being allowed to scratch something that’s itching like mad.

Shortly after I started this practice, I noticed a mantra popping into my head of it’s own free will. It’s a line from a movie, actually. A movie I saw a long long time ago. And suddenly there it was on repeat in my head:

Ben Kingsley: Don’t move until you see it.
Me: I can’t see it
BK: Don’t move until you see it.
Me: I can’t see it.
BK: Don’t move until you see it.

That’s right. Searching for Bobby Fischer had somehow injected itself into my head and has since become my lifeline when I am drowning.

(This is the scene from the movie – if you want to skip ahead to the part I hear in my head, start at 4:45)

Don’t move until you see it.
Don’t move until you see it.
Don’t move until you see it.
Don’t move until you see it.

I can’t see it. I don’t have the perspective. Or all the information. I can’t see it. I’m too scared to make a choice. I can’t see it. The problems seems so much bigger than me. I don’t feel smart enough. I don’t think I’m strong enough to handle it. I can’t see it. I feel so ridiculously alone. I can’t see it. I can’t see it. I can’t see it. Then, suddenly,

I see it.

Out of nowhere. I’m washing the dishes, or organizing my calendar and it’s just suddenly there. Clear as day. It’s seems so obvious. My heart slows. The tension releases. Every time.

Sometimes it takes an hour, sometimes a day. Sometimes weeks or even months. It’s never one thing at a time. Wouldn’t it be great if it was ever one thing at at time? One thing at a time would feel like a freaking vacation. I wish so hard that The Universe would step in;

“Here. Let me make it easier for you.”
(Wipes epic arm across cosmic chess board sending the existential pieces flying)

But we mere humans aren’t that lucky. We need to change our own perspective. Clear our heads. Meditate. Be still. Go focus on something else. Distract your thoughts. Remove yourself temporarily. Research. Cry. Pray. Whatever it takes.

But don’t move until you see it.

And if you wait, you will see it. You will.


Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s