Do we have to choose between following our heads and our hearts?
Is our heart just a part of our head? It’s intuition. It’s not emotional. It’s the part that knows.
My head often has to sit up and listen to what my heart has to say. My heart is the reason I live the way I do, make the choices I make and do so in a very rational and thought through way.
It’s why I hate working for big corporations, irrational managers and with people who don’t question the validity and purpose of what they do. It’s why I struggle to understand people who live a life they hate simply because they are scared of change or have forgotten that they are actually a creative being and empowered to use this to create a life worth living.
I am not a big fan of change. I often struggle and take time to adapt to big change. But equally constant change is an absolutely integral requirement for me. It’s what I believe is the paradox of the ‘INTJ’. I know when it’s time for change with what I do. I feel it. It can happen over night too. Literally one day I will be happy with what I’m doing and the next day I know that enough has become enough.
When I was young I would act very quickly on these impulses. I wouldn’t see the point in dwelling on stuff, I would just unplug and move on. However, I have come to recognise these times as I have grown up and learned to be patient at times such as these – to talk them over with people and to understand that there is time to just be.
I have just gone through this process again, where I have made big decisions about what I am doing. They seem irrational to some people. I have finished quite a large amount of work that I do, which means that I am forgoing a not insignificant amount of money – enough to force me to adapt my spending habits accordingly. But I have dwelt on this decision for a few months, become somewhat miserable and tired by battling my natural inclination and knowledge that I know it’s time to move on.
It just doesn’t make sense to me to do something that makes me miserable just so that I can earn enough money to survive and be entertained. What’s the point in living if that’s what I’m going to do? It’s insulting to people who are FORCED to live like that – of which there are billions around the world. I have a choice, and I have to remember periodically that I am free to choose to choose – this is how I am able to look outside of myself and have the energy to give to others.
I know that I’m not unusual in my desire to avoid the career trap – committing my life to work, to climbing ladders and ‘succeeding’ in such a perverse sense. I want to live a life undefined by my job or social status, cliché as that sounds. It’s true.
I think the difference between head and heart is the ego. The ego is essentially the head and the true evolving self is the heart. The ego wants things to stay the same, it tells me to earn more money, settle down, be ‘happy’, blend into the world and do the things I should be doing according to the ‘rationally designed’ version of reality we have at the moment.
Whereas the heart says ‘STOP! You are not becoming YOU!’
It is the real me, it’s the voice that says ‘let’s get creative, the world is a canvas, let’s start painting – let’s do something that will actually make a difference, let’s become’.
I am just finishing my process of change and already can feel the liberation – my shoulders feel lighter, my head feels brighter and I sense that I might even become fun to be around again. I want to give more time to family, friends and other things I am passionate about and this now feels like a real possibility.
How do you make life-changing decisions? Do you just know what you’ve got to do or do you like to spend time seeking advice and mulling it over? Do you feel like you are free to choose to choose? Is there anything you are doing now that sucks the life out of you and makes you miserable that you could feasibly finish doing in order to be more effective in other areas of your life? Could you..?