An Uncommon Moment of Clarity

Steady Water

I was introduced to Tim Urban’s article, The Tail End, right about this time last year. A fascinating context of the brevity of life. Ours is nothing but a whisper in a much larger conversation.

That article, of course, took on added significance, weeks later, when my father spent 17 days in ICU.

And it was one of the first things I thought about this past weekend, when I had an uncommon moment of clarity. You might even call it a breakthrough. Or the genesis of a complete transformation.

What kind of clarity, you ask?

Well, I’ve finally recognized that I am a chronic “page turner.”

That’s what I do. I work to get to the point of “okay, I got it,” as quickly as possible, so that I can just turn the page and “get on with it.”

Get on with what?

That’s the question that has no answer. There’s always something bigger, better, or more meaningful on the horizon, right?

There is always somewhere else to be besides right here.

Turns out, as much as I rationalize against it, I’m always more focused on what COULD BE or SHOULD BE instead of what IS.

And yes, you could say that in some respects that mentality has served me well. I fashion myself as resourceful. A problem-solver. It’s gotten me places.

A winning formula of sorts.

At the same time, it hinders my ability to be present. There is always a mental list to make. A plan to execute. An obstacle to overcome. A box to check. Something to worry about.

Somewhere else to dash off to.

When in actuality, life IS happening on those very pages that I am so eager to turn. Inside of those places I’m so anxious to move on from. 

It’s an acute blindspot.

Something I didn’t know I didn’t know … until this past weekend.

And as a result, these past few days have been bizarre. As if I’m living in a different dimension. Life feels like it’s coming to me in 1/2 speed. I’m France - Merry Christmasseeing things in plain sight that were once indistinguishable. Like someone handed me the map to an old buried treasure.

The waters in my head have steadied.

Things are getting done but I’m not in a rush.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my work. It fascinates me to no end. I have huge plans for 2018 and beyond. I am absolutely fired up about the possibilities that lie ahead.

At the same time, I’m going to appreciate these last 9 days of December. Choose to live them in the present tense.

It doesn’t have to be an EITHER/OR. It can be an AND.

I wish the exact same for you.

Happy holidays. Hug your loved ones. Embrace life in all its flavor.

And I will see you on the other side of 2017 . . .

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Ryan France

Ryan France is a native of Austin Texas, father of two, super-early riser, avid reader, admitted podcast junkie & bulletproof coffee addict. In a past life, France was an aspiring professional baseball player. Today, Ryan is an entrepreneur, author and relentless innovator of the real estate industry. Read more on the "Who is Ryan?" page.