Of Overthinking Advice

In your lifetime, you’ll get hundreds of pieces of advice. Most of them you’ll ignore, just for the sake of making your own mistakes, so you can learn from them. But some will stick and some will come back to you when you least expect them.

In my case, I’m still not sure if the words my grandpa would repeat each day like a mantra, count as advice. But the more I live and experience, the more I find myself pondering those words. They seemed so obvious, when I used to hear them all the time. He said „You have a heart and a brain. Use them.”

What could be more obvious then that? Of course I have a heart and a brain, I’m a human am I not? My teenage self would shake her head, kiss him on the cheek (or not) laugh and say „I know, I know” and be on her way. But as life goes on it seems like it’s harder to see it as something so clear and easy. Not because I don’t believe I have a heart or a brain, but more because I’m having a harder and harder time using them both. It’s almost like these two are constantly competing with each other, trying to decide which one is more right then the other. And perhaps there are matters in life that are only matters of the heart and things that only brain needs to concern itself with, but when it comes to making decisions it would be rather nice if they could agree on something. If something could be good and wise, rather than good, but stupid. I know I’m not making any special discovery when I talk about this, everybody seems to be pretty aware of the differences between the heart and the brain. Or, as  some pragmatic would call it, the left and the right brain.

So you see, I spend my time trying to figure out what he meant. I never asked him, because I thought I knew. I could ask him now, but the way he is, I’m not sure if he could give me an answer. And maybe the question would be stupid, because it’s so obvious and I’m trying to read too much into it?

Maybe it’s in the way he lived his own life? He was kind yet smart. And he was known for his kindness and intelligence. I was told so, at least. I believe it. I think we all need to keep believing in our childhood heroes, no matter how much we learn about life in the process of living, and how improbable some of those stories seem, as we grow up.

As I’m writing this, I’m not even sure if this is the kind of inspiration the daily post was looking for. I’m sure people received some amazing advice in their life they can follow, instead of trying to figure the meaning out. Then again, a known fact about myself is that I think too much, so perhaps it’s nothing that needs thought, but just something simple? Maybe it’s… Follow your heart and be kind, but always apply logic and remember to trust your knowledge of the world, to guide you through life’s challenges? That kind of makes sense, doesn’t it?

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In case it doesn’t, there’s always this advice my grandpa gave me. Pretty straight forward: „careful at the crosswalks!”

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