Trade-Offs

cam00354I’ve been thinking a lot lately about trade offs – something I’m willing to live with even if it wasn’t what I wanted at first. Some may call that settling and I guess in a way that’s true, but it seems lately that is all life is. One big trade-off.

Now I’m not talking core beliefs or values here. There are some things that I will never change my mind about because I value them too much. But then there are other things that, as I go about my day, I realize aren’t very important in the grand scheme of things.

I suppose I could call that clarity. Clarity of focus, of vision, of goals, and of dreams. It’s hard sometimes, though, because some of those goals, dreams, wants, and desires have been with me for decades. Some of them I’ve picked up along the way and some of them seem to be hardwired into my psyche.

But when I get right down to it, if I’m going to continue to be open to new ideas then some of my long-standing goals, dreams, wants, etc. are going to get pushed out or at least postponed. Knowing this doesn’t make it any easier when I’m hit head on by a new idea or concept, though.

Some of them seem so inconsequential at first that I don’t even notice them, but after some time they begin to wear away at my longstanding ideas and I’m left with a choice.

Choices…

I used to get confused when I came across people who seemed like they couldn’t make a choice or decision even if their lives depended on it. I would think to myself, ‘just look at your options and make the best choice from what you know. What’s the big deal?’

Yep, that was me.

Now, I’ve come to understand that choices carry more weight as you get older because there is less time to correct your course if you make a poor choice or things don’t turn out as you’d hoped. But some people never make a choice simply because they’re too afraid to make the wrong one.

That’s what I really don’t understand.

Even if you have less time, there’s always time to correct your course. But you must have a set course before you can correct it I suppose. Otherwise you’re just drifting through life allowing circumstance and other people direct your path. Where’s the happiness in that? How can you feel a sense of accomplishment when you’ve never done anything on purpose?

So okay, I’m not entirely comfortable with the idea of trade offs. I’m still on the fence as to whether its just a form of settling or it’s clarifying goals and dreams, but at least I control what changes and what stays the same. Sure I’m influenced by people and circumstances, but I weigh the new information against what I already know before I make the choice to make a trade-off.

Sometimes I miss the days when I would just jump in to a situation head first without much thought or care! Now I cringe when I think of some of the things I did, because they could have turned out sooooo differently.

I’m sure I’m not the only one…..

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