We appreciate our alone time and in our current hyper-busy lives, we probably don’t have enough of it. But even when we’re able to slow down and steal a few moments to re-center, we’re never truly alone. Our decisions leave a trail and propel us in new, exciting, and terrifying directions, touching the lives of those we interact with and influencing many more we don’t. It doesn’t matter the shape or direction of our paths. Only that we realize they are constantly unfolding and connected to everyone and everything around us in meaningful ways that will be revealed over time.
We often know immediately when we make mistakes. With more experience we begin noticing the poor choices as they occur. Eventually as we mature, we recognize the bad decisions before they happen. Experiencing this gap between action and reaction allows us to choose a different response and hopefully create a more positive outcome. Unfortunately when we voice our cynical instincts to others, we are often accused of being pessimists. But recognizing negative outcomes before they occur does not make us party poopers or defeatists. It really just shows we are learning and becoming more self-aware.
We all wear masks to hide our true feelings. On occasion it’s to show support for others, sometimes it’s to deceive, and others it’s simply to protect ourselves. With the latter, when what we are feeling is so strong and personal that we can’t share our real reaction, the mask shields us by insulating our vulnerability and tenderness. But this pretend face is an illusion and doesn’t change what we really feel. Only when we have the strength and courage to align our inner and outer lives will the mask dissolve, and we stop pretending.