fallen tree in the forest glen helen


I’ve been doing a lot of random pondering lately, which tends to happen when I find my life in flux. And a lot of that musing occurs while I’m driving to work in the morning. There is a space of time every day from about 9:20 to 9:50 a.m. when my mind loosens its boundaries and wanders, and sometimes I’m amazed by where it goes.

This morning I was pondering things that just happen naturally. I was watching a flock of birds flying in a V, and I was thinking how amazing it is that birds know to do that, instinctively. Then they further impressed me by separating into two different V’s; as I watched, several of them shifted, like Thunderbird pilots in an air show, and completely changed their formation. The flock split in half, and they all shifted effortlessly into their new positions, seemingly knowing exactly where to go. I found myself wondering, “How do they tell each other what they’re doing? Or do they just know what they’re supposed to do?” And I realized that some things just happen naturally.

I do what a lot of people do- I so often fail to follow my instincts. I ignore that feeling in my gut that tells me when I’m on the wrong track. And when I stop doing what comes naturally, when I stop listening to what I instinctively know to be true, I become emotionally drained and end up unnecessarily complicating my life by making cloudy decisions. So why is it that we push against our instincts? Why do we force ourselves to ignore the fact that something deep inside knows where to lead us? If we could just learn to listen to- or better yet, learn to trust– what that inner voice is trying to say, I bet we could lessen our burdens significantly.

Why is it so hard to trust that inner voice? What holds us back? Is it fear of making a wrong choice? Fear of going against our cognition? Maybe it stems from the probability that the “inner voice” is led by emotions- and if our emotions steer us wrong, it hurts a hell of a lot more than if our brains make a mistake. There’s more at stake when we listen to our inner voice. Because that inner voice is directly connected to our hearts.

How often do we feel conflicted about something- some decision that needs made, a relationship that isn’t as it should be, a feeling we have that we don’t know what to do with? We push these feelings down that creep up on us- and it’s uncomfortable. The discomfort comes from doing something that goes against nature, goes against the grain. It actually causes us more agony, more grief, more regret, to so something that goes against what we know deep down to be true. But we do it over and over again in our lives. We fight against nature. And that is where a lot of our pain comes from. It’s tiring to swim upstream. So the question is, at what point do we stop fighting it and swim with the current? I’m going to try. I want to do what feels natural; I want to listen to my inner voice and live with fewer regrets. I’d like to see where the current takes me, and enjoy the scenery on the way there…

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