Did you know that confusion is most often the precursor to clarity? This means there’s good coming around the corner! Confusion is described as a state of being bewildered or unclear in one’s mind about something – clarity is the opposite of confusion and we all want clarity, right?!
You may be confused about what to wear, or where to go on vacation or what to make for dinner, but for this article, I’m talking about the kind of confusion that is paralyzing. Your mind fogs over. Your ability to see clearly takes a hard right, then left, then hits the breaks, then stumbles forward and likely moves into warp speed going in a zillion different directions to avoid one thing – your confusion.
Meanwhile, self-doubt is having a heyday with you.
Recently, I said to myself, “one thing I am absolutely clear about is I’m confused” and then I weird-laughed…I mean really, how can you be clear about confusion? This makes no sense at all, or does it…
When you acknowledge you’re confused – unclear of your next move, not sure what decision to make, what the next step is etc., you’re acknowledging that something isn’t working or doesn’t feel right. The sheer act of stating “I feel confused,” shifts you out of resistance and into acceptance of your state of confusion. For now, nothing is solved and that’s okay – really, it is okay!
When you resist acknowledging confusion; feelings of overwhelm, a need to control your environment, busyness, sleeplessness, frustration, angst, agitation and so on, become the litany of emotions stirred up in a fruitless effort to avoid one emotion – confusion.
Outcomes of unacknowledged confusion might be:
Quitting – tossing up your arms in defeat.
Running – moving, leaving, exiting.
Busyness – jumping from this to that, and that to this.
Distraction – shiny object syndrome.
Doubt – doubting yourself, your choices, who you are.
Self-comparison – striving to be like someone else to avoid your own internal conflict.
Overing – an avoidance tactic…over-pleasing, over-yessing, over-extending.
Believe me, I get it! Confusion is not a comfortable place to be. We go out of our way to avoid confusion, just like most women go out of their way to avoid conflict/confrontation with others. After all, confusion is internal conflict – it’s confrontation with yourself (read that again).
To avoid confusion, I pushed like super woman on steroids…which I now know was all a ruse to avoid myself.
Many people crave clarity thinking that when they’re clear, all will be well, similar to – when I’m successful then I will be happy or when I’m making a million then I’ll be enough.
Clarity is a process. It’s constant. No different than health. You don’t embark on a healthy eating plan, achieve your goal, stop and remain healthy, do you? Same with clarity – you don’t achieve clarity, stop the habits that support clarity and remain clear.
Why not? There are just too many variables in life. Those plot twists that gradually perpetuate a state of confusion (an eroding relationship) or perhaps it’s sudden – the company you’re working for closes. Things happen. It’s part of life. And you have choice – acknowledge where you are at…or reference the above list and practice stellar (albeit exhausting) avoidance.
Now for the good news! Confusion can serve as a magnificent stepping-stone to clarity.
The first step is to acknowledge and accept your state of confusion so that, as mentioned earlier, you shift out of resistance, which in turn, opens conscious space for what has yet to be revealed.
Acknowledgement and acceptance moves you out of the ‘fight or flight’ response, which perpetuates the feeling of being paralyzed and shuts down your minds ability to move towards a solution.
Essentially, you’re cutting yourself some slack, softening, turning towards – instead of running away and then, with this additional emotional space you’ve created for yourself, the following begins to happen…
Pops of Knowing…a piece of the life puzzle falls into place and suddenly you know, you just know! I call this “cha-ching!” Ah Ha’s…a side effect of revealing what was previously hidden and Light Bulb Moments – when the fog dissipates and suddenly you can see clearly what you hadn’t before.
For me, during those big kahuna times of confusion, I’d wake up in the morning with a “pop of knowing” who to call for help or what my next step (of many steps) was, or suddenly a book will fall open to just the page I needed to read, or I’m walking along a trail and an idea pops in or a random conversation leads to an “ah ha” moment. None of which will happen when busy running away from what you resist.
Clarity comes, when you brush aside being so hard on yourself and replace it with patience and compassionate awareness of what is.
What are you resisting?
I’m happy to end with “one thing I am absolutely clear about is today, I am no longer confused!” Tomorrow might be a different story.