Clarity will come. I’ve been hearing that phrase a lot lately. Life would be so much easier if I actually knew what I wanted, if the best decisions I should make were straightforward, and if my future path was obvious. I feel as though I am constantly analyzing hypothetical situations that lead me down a boardwalk straight into a sea of frustration. Is there a way to stop playing hypothetical situations in my brain and just to live in the moment?
It seems so trite to say, “You’ll know when you know,” but it really does seem to happen that way. When clarity arrives, it brings a physical sensation of calm that washes over me and the answer becomes obvious. There is relief. There is understanding. And then there is action. These moments are what save my sanity and guide me forward in ways that nothing else can.
So how can I get there faster? I am goal oriented; not knowing what the goal is feels more than confusing- it’s paralyzing. I decide to hurry clarity along by making room for it. I start doing things that will make me feel accomplished no matter which path I end up choosing. The more I occupy my brain with other accomplishable activities, the sooner certainty usually comes.
Now that I’m an empty nester I sometimes wonder if I should sell my house. There are so many pros and cons. I realize how much I love my home and how perfect it is for me. Another day, I see it through a different lens and it seems like there may be something else out there that meets my needs even better. My friends tell me, “Clarity will come. Wait.”
But don’t you have to plan to sell and buy a house? How can I just wait? On the other hand, what if I act impulsively and I regret selling? You can’t go back. What if I stay too long, though, wasting time or fulfilling experiences or missing out on the best time to sell or the right house to buy? I torture myself with questions like these. And these questions are just about the house – I have loads of other hypothetical questions swirling around in my brain simultaneously. Choosing this one issue, I decide to take action and do something that doesn’t decide a path but that will make me happier regardless. I start to seriously declutter the house.
If the clarity that’s been promised to me eventually tells me to move, the packing will be easier and I will be able to be more spontaneous in my timing. If my clarity lets me know that this is my forever home, then I’ll have a lighter, airier home that feels peaceful and tranquil. I ask my kids what I can give away or throw out. Every time I open my clothes closet, I challenge myself to choose one thing that I know I’ll never miss, and I remove it permanently from the closet.
I’m in no rush but as I slowly declutter different areas of my home each week, the cobwebs in my brain start disappearing, as well. They disappear just as easily after decluttering a drawer, under a sink, a whole closet or an entire room. The space doesn’t matter – the process and the feeling afterwards are what make me think more clearly.
The act of doing is making me feel more empowered than just sitting around. The memories that flood as I go through my family’s treasures, stop time, insisting that I take the space to reflect on my life. This stage in my life feels so appropriate for reflection and I am grateful to be handed the time to contemplate. So many things that I thought that I would never live without, I can so easily toss today, and that moves me closer to understanding how I want my future to look and feel. I am having conversations with myself about my priorities – what is important to keep and what feels amazing to discard.
These conversations continue in my head, away from my stuff. What intangible things are priorities for me to keep in my life and what would feel freeing to discard. What additional things do I want to include in my life that I haven’t yet experienced?
A few years ago, I may have chosen different things to keep. We are all constantly changing and evolving, with each new experience that we have. The lucidity I’m seeking now includes certain factors that didn’t even exist a few years ago and has enabled me to dream bigger than I could have years ago. This comforts me and helps me have patience as I wait for clarity to arrive, clearing the path one old dress, costume jewelry box and crate of 80s CDs at a time.