Look up or look down: that is the quest
Should I be present or look ahead at the future?
When faced with life’s challenges, when is it best to keep your head down, taking one step at a time, or look up and see where you are headed?
When to look up or look down:
Look down when you are at the starting point of a long climb up a mountain, only to look ahead to keep an eye on the path.
Look down when you have lost a loved one and are consumed by sadness, when it feels there is no end in sight to your grief. Take each day one at a time.
Look down when what appears to be an insurmountable task, such as shoveling a long drive after a blizzard or the cleaning of a house after a party. Looking up only exacerbates the exhaustion of the task.
Look down when recovering from an addiction; take one-day-at-a-time, to look ahead at a life without that thing is too daunting in early recovery.
Look down if your days have become dull, take each day separately, and be careful to look towards weekend or holidays for a respite, as you will miss the hidden jewels amidst the monotony.
Look down if your moods are tired, anxious and depressed, there is no need to try and push these moods away, looking ahead will only intensify the power of them, they too will pass.
Look down if you are unsure of what your future will look like; allow your future to unfold gradually.
Look up when running a sprint and can see the finish line in the distance, look at where you need to be to win the race.
Look up as you approach the end of a long arduous feat; see how far you have left and how close you are to achieving it.
Look up when you are in the planning stage of something, look at what it is you are striving for; look at the cake finished, the business successful, the book complete, the wedding dance, the baby sleeping, then look down to start creating.
Look up when motivation and focus is waning, look at where it is you want to be, as your energy restores you can get back on track.
There is no right or wrong way to cope with life’s challenges; it is a personal choice.
Looking ahead and taking things a step at a time depends on what the situation is and you knowing what is best for you.
By being in tune with your emotions and body, you will know deep within which choice to make.
So to look up or down, depends on you.
If you are tired and overwhelmed, or your challenge appears too big or ambiguous, like a loss of someone, or you have no idea of what the future will look like? These are times for looking down.
If it is obvious what you want, you can taste and see it within a short distance, then look up, keep looking up until you get it.
If you have a goal you wish to achieve, you may look up to maintain your momentum, but then look down, as there will be steps along the way. This is the time when both strategies are beneficial.
In answering the question, should I look up or look down?
As quoted by William Shakespeare:
“There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.”
Do what feels right for you at that moment in time, not what you are being told to do, or what you think what you should be doing.
It is your life, your challenge and your decision.
That is the answer!