Mindfulness, Personal

Grey Zone

Isn’t life great when we have all the answers? When things are black and white, it’s easy (or at least easier) to make a choice. We can look at the respective paths with all of the information and make an educated decision. However, what about when we do not have all of the information? That is the challenge of the grey zone.

Our brains are actually hard-wired to fill in the blanks. We play through scenarios, make judgments, and create our own interpretation. Spend enough time doing this and you might actually think you know the truth about something you know nothing about. It can be a rather slippery slope – trust me, I’ve been there. So, what do you do?

How to escape the grey zone

Frankly, the grey zone is life. Things aren’t always black and white, and sometimes we just do not have the resources to fill in those blanks. Guess what? That’s okay! For a long time, I wrestled with filling in the blanks. I wanted to know all of the details of a particular situation, and as I found out more of the details, it honestly just made the situation greyer than ever. What should have made things more black and white, made things more frustrating? How could that be?

At that point in time, I had a choice. I could keep trying to fight out of the grey zone, attempt to find that clarity I was longing for, or I could stop. And so…I stopped. No more analyzing. I was finally done asking questions. Peacefully, I refrained (and retrained). No more social media searching or listening to the random stories people told me. After years of listening, asking and waiting patiently, I stopped. Was it hard? At first, but it was so rejuvenating and refreshing that letting go suddenly felt better than needing to “find the solution.”

A happy ending

Now, I’m at peace with this grey zone. I’m thankful that I had the ability to ask the questions I had and (I genuinely believe) receive honest answers, but at the same time, it was a lesson. A lesson that answers don’t necessarily make things clear. There will always be stories that don’t make sense. Some days, we are going to make up our own stories to make ourselves feel better. And sometimes people give you the version that will work best for them as well…

Don’t chase the grey zones and don’t willingly put yourself in them either. When you have the opportunity to ask the questions, ask. Follow your gut and listen to the answer – it will (almost) never steer you wrong. Life is full of grey zones. It’s up to you how you navigate them.

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