Listen to the wise man

The wise man whispering in my ear

My heart is racing so fast it seems it’s going to explode. The same way it does when I hit the brakes, barely avoiding a car crash. Eyes wide open, looking for the tiger that’s running to kill me. I cant’s see it yet, but I know it has its mouth open and comes like a freight train. My mouth is tight, like every other single muscle on my face: I can’t let the tiniest amount of air leave my lungs, or else I might die. My fists closed as hard as I can, till my knuckles are white. I am preparing my body and mind for a fall and a hard wipeout.

Now I am as scared as when as a child I thought the monster under my bed was going to eat me, and I had to hide under the (apparently armored) blankets. But there are no blankets here, nowhere to hide, the nightmare is real and I have to fight to make it alive. This is a big wave, and it’s going to be a bigger wipeout. I am scared as hell.

There’s this voice in my head that screams orders “run, from the danger, you stupid, run!” over and over again.

It is the kind of voice that makes my heart race faster, feel unease and act instead of stopping and thinking. This guy that talks fast and with a shaky voice seems to be right: I’m in danger and I have to fight! But on the other hand doing what he tells me to do doesn’t fell the right thing to do.

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If I listen carefully, there’s another person talking but his voice is not that loud. This voice is low-pitched, delivers the message with some of the calmness that can only come from wisdom. This wise man uses fewer words to transmit his idea and the pace they come at is way slower compared to the other screaming guy. He does not give orders, he suggests. He does not repeat the advice twice, he says it once: “Stop, look, assess the situation. What’s the best way to make it?”

And this last guy has calmed me down, forced me to focus, and asked instead of ordering. Now I look at the situation and my mind is not racing, it is calculating the best course of action, taking its time to process the information to not only make it but do it with the least amount of damage. Of course, I can still hear the hysterical guy screaming in the background, repeating over and over again what now seems a nosesnse.

I have to make an extra effort not to follow the high-pitched voice advice, but after doing what the wise man suggested I make it easily to the other side. I feel calm and more confident after acting this way and not running like a chicken without its head. I guess have to stop more and think instead of acting, I guess I have to listen to the wise man more often.

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