“To be or not to be”

That is the question, isn’t it? If Prince Hamlet had shown more decisiveness a whole string of tragedies could have been avoided. And that is the lesson Shakespeare was illustrating with this famous tale. I think perhaps we all find ourselves in this situation at some point or other in our lives. (Maybe some people never get past it. What a miserable life they must lead, always blowing in the wind.)

Indecisiveness is a bitch. It always comes from fear. Fear of what will happen if we choose A. Fear of what will happen if we choose B instead. Sometimes the consequences are minuscule, sometimes they are catastrophic. (Again, Hamlet, and a number of dead people).

I endured an unhappy marriage for far too long because I was afraid to make the decision to leave. Was the unknown better or worse than my daily misery? Eventually I realized that my choice came down to A) being miserable for the rest of my life or B) reaching for the possibility of happiness. Once I understood what was truly at stake the decision became easy and I left. (As it turned out, my leaving freed my ex as well so it all worked out.)

In my experience, we always know what the right decision is–we just aren’t always ready to face or admit it. We’re afraid of hurting the people we care about, afraid of letting others down, afraid of the unknown (as in my case), afraid of what others might think of us, afraid of emotional pain, afraid we won’t do the right thing, afraid . . . the list of fears is too long to write out. In short, indecision is always based on fear.

So if you are facing a difficult decision and have carefully weighed the pros and cons of your choices but still hesitate, gird your loins and take the leap. (for those of you who aren’t familiar with this concept it is from the bible days when men wore long, loose garments. An illustration of how to perform this maneuver can be found here)

Indecisiveness is a miserable state to be in. I think I mentioned that in the first paragraph. Make the choice, whatever the right choice is for you. You’ll deal with the fallout. Maybe your choice will be a bad one. Bad choices happen, mostly when we don’t listen to our gut. Even then it’s better to make the choice than to live a half life in the limbo of uncertainty. Our choices provide us with the opportunities to gain experience and grow.

That concludes the philosophy portion of this frigid, snowy Sunday morning. And because it’s still winter here I’ve included another snow shot. This is one of our barns. (A barn we can’t get into because the door is frozen shut and half buried.)