Which Way to Go?

For the audio version, scroll to the bottom.

All week it seems the thing I keep saying over and over again to friends is, “There is no ‘wrong’ choice,” so I decided it must be something to blog about.

When I’m confronted with a choice I’m often stricken with a sense of paralysis. “Oh no! Which way to go? What choice is the right one?” I freeze up because I’m so scared of making a mistake, that I’ll start down a certain road and realize it’s the most horrible one ever.


I know I usually write captions, but all I really want to say is can you believe this picture? Photo credit: David Marcu.

Something that soothes me and also feels liberating is remembering nothing is permanent. I know that sentiment often encourages people to live life to the fullest, or as if today was our last, but for me it also means if I make a “bad” choice, I can choose again. I can choose to navigate in a different direction. Nothing is stuck, or static, or stale.

What a relief to remember that. I think about when I was applying for colleges. It seemed like a weighty decision. That wherever I went would set me on a course for life so choosing wisely was imperative. So I did. And the school I went to was a terrible fit. What did I do? I transferred schools. There was no need for me to suffer where I was even though a part of me felt like I had to, that because I made this choice I must stick with it.

I know our society is all about sticking with things. Quitting is for losers or some such nonsense. I’m a believer in following things through to the end – if I say I’ll do something, I will, but when I feel like I have to stick with something just because I made the decision to do so, what am I really accomplishing? Wouldn’t it be better for me to have the flexibility to change my mind?

A while back I wrote a post on being unconventional. In it, I realized I’ve been looking for a home that feels like “the one.” A home that I’ll settle down in. A home that I’ll live in for years. These days, I’m not looking for “the one.” I’m realizing oh-so-clearly that I have to take a chance, and then if it doesn’t work out, I take another one. I don’t have to remain committed to a toxic situation. Now, when I’m looking for places to live, it’s not so serious. It’s not a life-or-death, I’m-locked-into-this-so-I-better-choose-wisely thing. It’s more of an, “OK, I’ll try this out for a while, see how it goes,” kind of thing.

We human beings were not made for staticity, we were made for movement. So when our choices seem not so great, we can make other ones. There are very few things that we truly can’t undo. I’m not saying there won’t be consequences – there are always consequences, but perhaps we don’t need to agonize quite so much at the beginning.

I dream of a world where we realize we have the power of choice and that means we can always choose again. A world where we realize if things are headed in a direction we don’t like, we can turn around. A world where we realize life is more flexible than it seems.

Another world is not only possible, it’s probable.

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