Yesterday morning my youngest son told me that he was hungry no more than 5 minutes after eating a big breakfast. I told him that it might be a good idea to wait a few minutes so that his stomach could report on its new contents and he exclaimed: “Daddy, I know how that works: your brain is normally talking to your heart, so it has to interrupt the conversation and sometimes that takes a while.” I had to smile at that one, but as usual, the observations of children often get me thinking.
In this case my thoughts expanded on another conversation I was having in my head about readiness. Readiness, that is, the active state of being ready, is often limited to its physical or mental implications. I would argue, however, that readiness is as much a matter of the heart as it is the body or mind.
The heart plays an important role in preparedness. For starters, the heart is the custodian of wisdom. If you consider wisdom not as knowledge, but as the sense of the fitness of things, you’ll recognize that careful attention paid to wisdom pays enormous dividends. It is commonly accepted that “timing is everything”, so I would imagine that a better sense of timing cannot hurt!
When you prepare for something, you must attend to the details surrounding it, but you must also “wrap your mind around it”. These are both necessary, but not sufficient to successful preparedness. If your heart is not ready, you simply won’t be ready.
Oddly enough, getting your heart ready is less a matter of bracing (as you would “pluck or screw up your courage”) and more a matter of coming to rest in relation to the factors at hand. If you’re not at rest in your heart, your faculties will be impaired at a certain level and your timing will – unless you are really lucky – be off.
Timing is everything because of the forces at work in the universe. Some are under your control, others are beyond it. If the action you are considering is timed rightly, the “stars” will, as they say, “be aligned”. If, however, you try to push things through with your body and mind and pay insufficient heed to the messages of your heart, then your sense of timing will suffer and you will likely act too soon or too late.
Physical and mental preparedness are necessary but not sufficient to generative, efficient action. You must listen to your heart and more importantly, you must learn to let your heart be at rest in relation to the decisions you must make as you navigate the waters of your life. Do this and you will be generously rewarded. You’ll be ready to act when the time is right and perhaps just as importantly, you will act when and only when the time is right. Right timing is the wages of wisdom!