Age has nothing whatsoever to do with wisdom. All you have to do is look at the state of the world to figure that out. There are adults who party and do not take care of their children properly. Look at Rumpelstiltskin for example. I know he isn’t a real person, but because I am in love with that new ABC show, “Once Upon A Time,” you gotta bear with me here. He’s an adult, right? I mean, seriously. You would think he would find something more worthwhile to do than go around taking people’s firstborns. And you’d think that people would use their brains and not take any of his deals. His shady, shady deals. But no. They fall for it every time. They see a way out, and they take it in a heartbeat, no matter what the consequences are. I’ll deal with that part later, you tell yourself, and then later comes, much too soon, and it catches you off guard. You’ve got nothing, no choice but to watch in absolute horror as your world falls apart.
I don’t have all the answers. I’ll never be able to say that I do. After all, I am only human. Desire often wins out with me. If I want to do something, I do it. If I don’t, I don’t. But sometimes, it is not that simple, especially when there are others in the equation to consider. My formula for wisdom is simple. It may not be foolproof sometimes, but it is a start.
1) Think before you do act or speak. Ask yourself these three questions: Is it kind? Is it true? Is it necessary? If the answer to all three questions is yes, then go ahead. If the answer to all three questions is no, then do nothing. This will save you a lot of heartache. It also helps to LISTEN before you do anything. If you don’t have all the details, then your words or actions will be wrong.
2) Realize that everybody you meet has a story. It is why they behave the way they do. It is not because of you or anything else. It is because of their roots, their upbringing, their beliefs, etc, etc. Until you start listening more than you talk, you’ll never know another person’s story. But you don’t have to know the story to know that it is there. Be still with yourself. Watch the world go by, and when it stops to greet you, welcome it. Take in everything.
3) Read. A lot. In my life, I have come to an understanding of the people around me through books. When I start caring about certain characters, I tend to compare them to the people in my life. It is a habit. Everything in life is in fiction as well. Fiction makes real life magical. Think of an onion. Now think of a person you know well. They’re the same, right? You peeled away layers to get to the core. You can learn so much from other people’s imaginations. There is so much wisdom in the pages of a book. It is even truer with nonfiction.
4) Plan for the future while living one day at a time. This is a tricky one, I know. What I mean by this is to be present in this moment, be focused, while at the same time moving forward. It’s like me and my writing. I am slowly but surely getting this writing thing down. I started posting on here everyday last month (geeeez, was it only last month? It feels like ages and ages), and I am making writing a habit. Soon, I will be ready for something bigger.
5) Be YOU-que! Do something because you want to do it, not because everybody else is doing it. This one is pretty self-explanatory.
Starting today, I am following my own advice. Starting today, I am going to become a wiser person. Starting today, I am saying goodbye to poor decisions. I am going to manage my time better. Who’s with me?