Sunday, October 12, 2008

The Art of the Decision

My friend Mavis and I were having a discussion recently about making decisions. Conversation centered around just how one goes about deciding to decide. We shared techniques used to get us to the point where we're comfortable taking a particular direction, and laughed at some of the coin-flipping, universe-manipulating maneuvers in our repertoire.

What I've come to is this:

Sometimes action is what you have to take. In our search for solutions to our weaknesses we dither and wait for an answer from a greater source. Through prayer and meditation questions are asked and answers waited for. Sometimes we pray more and meditate more and wait more until we get the answer we're looking for.

I think Nike had it right. Just do it.

Take action. It's movement, active learning. Unless you're diving out of a plane, most things can be corrected if you decide you're on the wrong path. Pay a little bit of attention as you go and see what you learn.

Then again -

Action for the sake of action is actually counter-productive. My friend Kay calls is being bizzy. When you're being bizzy dashing about multi-tasking and committing to committees and buzzing about your bizziness, what are you not thinking about? What are you not committing to? What are you not attending to? It really doesn't hurt to pause ocasionally, look up and consider where you are. If you are on the wrong path, you'll know it soon enough. If you feel good about your progress, the short time you spend in consideration won't hurt anything.

So how to decide?

I suppose one decides in the same way one dives off a diving board. Get into position. Plan your steps (there's only room for a couple of them) take a breath and ... jump. It's part consideration, part preparation, a little practice and a jump.

Funny thing is, I was thinking about all this in terms of art projects. I was wondering how to proceed on a painting, whether to change directions or proceed as planned.

Maybe what's good for an art project is good for life.

What do you learn from your art?

1 comment:

Karine said...

Art has taught me everything I know! You have great insight, Patty.