Wisdom’s in the little thing done well now, to mitigate a bigger messier thing later.
There are many things we do routinely that a pinch of wisdom can help with. Try these:
1. Strive to be early. Leaving home five minutes earlier saves the thirty minutes of stress all the way there thinking we’ll be late. Lose five minutes or the quality of thirty? That’s a no-brainer.
2. Put things away. Spend the few seconds putting that dish away in anticipating the loss and the time taken to clean up the mess if it’s bumped onto the tiled floor and shatters everywhere.
3. Engage in real life more. Logging into, or checking, our social media twenty times a day, whilst neglecting more relevant relationships in our presence and tasks we’re responsible for, is costing us time, stress and decreasing intimacy. Besides, endless re-checking for email and ‘likes’ and comments reveals something lacking deeper within us; something social media will never satisfy — only God can. Better to ‘ration’ ourselves to a couple of short sessions per day as reward for jobs well done.
4. Focus with attention on hazardous tasks. That ‘little distraction’ costs eventually, especially in the context of crossing the street or driving our cars. Take our eyes off the road, when our mind’s already astray, and we’re suddenly driving a one ton bullet at speed to kill — with ‘nobody’ in control at the wheel.
5. Do the requested task straight away where possible. As we declare a ‘fast’ on harping-on about things not done for weeks, temptations at exasperation are reduced to almost zip. Conversely, power is known in the alleviation of pressure that we’d not be hassled either by the burden hanging over us or by the people who need us to do this thing. This power is ours when we do the thing now whilst we have the chance.
6. Proactively address situations of conflict. Agreeing with ourselves to mend a conflict now, getting what we can collectively get out of it, means the fight gets no messier; there’s less spilt blood to clean up. In reality, we just don’t know how pear-shaped situations like these could become.
7. Stay on the front foot. Whatever role(s) we play in life we either go forwards or backwards in them. There’s no between place. If we’re not acting positively, and with diligent intent, we’ll soon lose previously hard fought ascendency.
There’s a wisdom flipside to all these. Wisdom is a fine balance; a knife’s edge; a balance between dual ancient virtue, diligence and prudence.
Can it be better seen as effectiveness and simplification in life?
© 2011 S. J. Wickham.