Knowing What to Do and When to Do It

I don’t have a specific topic to cover today; not because I couldn’t find one but mostly because at the time of writing it’s Monday morning and I’m not particularly motivated to write. As I’ve said a few times during the course of this blog, my goal is to be honest and real and I prefer not to put a fake face on my content here. Unfortunately, that means that sometimes what I put down to digital paper isn’t going to be the most positive and uplifting thing in the world, but that’s the price of putting your true self out there for people to see.

One of the things I’ve struggled with for most of my life is knowing what I want to do for work. I’ve always had vague ideas of various things I’d like to do, but like many things in life I’m just not willing to pay the costs to get there. There have been many examples of this over the course of my years as a responsible, tax paying adult, and for each item there have been reasons I’m interested and factors that prevented me from pursuing an interesting opportunity.

Perhaps the biggest disappointment regarding my career was when I chose to give up on my dream of becoming a professional pilot. Of the many things I like to do, flying is at the very top of my list. There is nothing that makes me feel more free than being thousands of feet above the earth at the controls of an aircraft that can take me virtually anywhere. I have never been more at peace than when I am up in the air.

Unfortunately, the events of life conspired against me and I was forced to choose between flying and what I believed at the time was a more important responsibility. It turns out now that the decision was wasted from the start, but I couldn’t know that at the time. I made my choice and now it’s too late to realistically get back into flying as a profession. Perhaps one day I’ll make enough money to do it recreationally, but spending my days in the air is nearly certain to be an impossibility.

Of course, like many of my topics, this article is sparked by a feeling I have inside me about some aspect of my life. It can be good or bad, but it is something that weighs on my mind heavily at the time of writing. We face so many decisions in our lives every day; some are small and insignificant, while others can be life altering to the extent that nothing is ever the same again. Sometimes it’s impossible to know how a single decision will affect the rest of your life.

The knowledge of unforeseen consequences can make it quite difficult to make decisions about even the most basic things sometimes. You can know from a logical perspective what the right choice is, but you become afraid of what might happen if you make that choice. Other times you have no idea what to do because you can see various outcomes that are all equally good or equally bad or some mix of the two, and you don’t which result your decision will generate.

Perhaps the most difficult part of my life has been knowing what to do and when to do it. There has been so much doubt in my life about many things, from career to family to just getting up in the morning. Some people are able to deal with these things very well and live happy, productive lives. Others are more like me who struggle to put up with a world which continues to throw difficulties our way and we just can’t understand why we can’t figure out how to avoid them.

I’ve had to learn to accept that I will always struggle with many of the things that are expected of me as a man and a father and whatever else I may be. My attention is easily grabbed by various things that aren’t particularly good for me, and it’s far easier to descend into something distracting to pass the time rather than deal with the problems I’d rather not have in the first place. The responsible side of me knows I should do better, but the will just isn’t there.

Perhaps one day I’ll find the strength inside me to extract myself from whatever this is that keeps me from being more than I am. It may be that I can find a way to shed my anger and anxiety and angst about the circumstances of my life and finally learn to accept that it is what it is and there isn’t much I can do about it. The thought of that galls me, but the reality is that with billions of people in a world of limits, only a few will truly realize their full potential. It is knowing this that makes it so hard to take risks and really know what to do and when to do it.

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