My memoirs make many references to my ‘inner voice’ which has guided me throughout my life.
A moment of enlightenment occurred one sunny April morning. I was climbing the steps to the Fitzwilliam Museum to see its collection of Egyptian, Greek and Roman artefacts. A sense of calm came over me, and I stood still and silent, listening to my inner voice of wisdom. Again I was being guided.
The Grace of a Nightingale
Some would say this is our intuition or divine guidance. When I listened and surrendered to this hidden mystical voice I often felt empowered to make instinctive decisions which would protect me or enable me to change and transform the course of my life.
In his book ‘Blink – The Power of Thinking Without Thinking’ Malcolm Gladwell calls this ‘thin-slicing’. This is when we have limited information and yet we can still make good decisions – sometimes better than those which are more informed.
‘We have, as human beings, a storytelling problem. We’re a bit too quick to come up with explanations for things we don’t really have an explanation for.
Truly successful decision making relies on a balance between deliberate and instinctive thinking.
There can be as much value in the blink of an eye as in months of rational analysis.
We learn by example and by direct experience because there are real limits to the adequacy of verbal instruction.’
So great accomplishments are not always based on endless fact finding and analysis. Remember ‘paralysis by analysis”. Over thinking and over analysing can at best hinder or at worst thwart your plans and actions.
A courageous heart will go forth and engage with life despite confusion and fear
A fearful heart will be hesitant and will tend to hold back
A heavy heart will make for a gloomy unlived life.
John O’Donohue, Benedictus