Crossroads are never easy. What do you do when asked to do something you aren’t sure about? Decision making is difficult when it’s your own life and stuff is going down. But what happens when all of a sudden – someone asks something of you that you hadn’t considered before?
My first bit of advice is never commit to answering right then and there. Big questions deserve big time outs. People need time to process information before making rash decisions.
One of my many flaws is that I am quick to say, “yes, I can help.” I mean it with every fiber in my body. In my heart, I want to help, my brains screams: DO IT, and my hands and feet are ready and willing.
So when I was confronted recently with conflicting feelings – I was like a deer caught in the headlights. I was sort of just frozen and tongue-tied and some-how I managed to say that I needed to time to think about it.
It was the best decision I made. Whats worse than saying no? Saying yes and then regretting it. I’ve been most fortunate in the times people have asked for my assistance. While I was always so willing to give of my time, energies and support to others, I sometimes neglected my own needs. No one suffered besides me. Being kind has its rewards and what ‘they” say is true. What goes around comes around.
That having been said – it applies to the negative as well. Currently I find myself in a position where I am dying to say, I told you so. But it’s not nice to rub it in once the damage is done. I warned someone not to be so trusting. I begged them not to lend funds when they had financial struggles. And now, they are in heaps of trouble. They have asked for my help – not monetarily – but for advice. Advice is free when you are someone like me – but there is always a price to pay. Getting involved on any level now is sure to bring trouble rearing its ugly head in my direction. But can I turn away?
Looking at the larger picture, if I were in this person’s shoes – I would seriously hope there would be someone to hold my hand, ease my fears and pray for a positive outcome. I’ve always had my pulse on other people’s feelings and this is really hard for me. On one hand, I KNOW this person needs help. On the other, I am willing myself to say no. I am at a crossroads.
The time has come to make a decision and instead of jumping – you know ‘they’ say the older you get the wiser you become – I find myself being more cautious than ever before. I am listening to my own advice; that inner voice, and taking the time to really think it through.
Sometimes I wish life was all rainbows and butterflies with rooms full of bowls of ice cream and buckets of peanut chews. I wish I had an amazing sense of humor and a quick wit to get myself out of potentially sticky situations. But – that’s not me. I’m the one that took 3 days and then FINALLY had a comeback. I can not even count the times my brother face-palmed when I finally spit it out.
There is one consolation to all this. At least it wasn’t me. I am a very trusting person as well, in theory this problem may have been mine if I were in a state of tenderheartedness for someone’s sob-story. I am not the one in trouble and I have the answers this person needs. I just need to remember not to say, “I told you so”, which is going to be really hard. The reason for my hesitation? If this person really respected my opinion, they would have listened to me in the first place. They could have avoided this issue all-together, what makes me think they will listen now? Why should I spend my energies on someone who has proven not to listen to me in the past? I am a firm believer in the fact that G-d give us only a certain amount of words to use on this earth. I weigh my words very carefully and I wonder if this is an exercise in futility.