It’s hard to know what the right thing to do is sometimes. We may find ourselves caught between a rock and a hard place, where it seems like no matter which way we go, some harm will befall the outcome.


So how do we know whether to act or stay out of it? How do we know when it’s time to speak up and take a stand, versus minding our own beeswax? I wish there were an easy answer to these questions, but the reality is that sometimes no matter which decision we make, someone or something may be negatively impacted.


It’s in these moments when it’s especially important to become tuned in to our higher self. Our higher self is the place within that if we get quiet enough to listen, always seems to know the right thing to do.


Frequently, our higher selves lay dormant as we move about the hustle and bustle of our daily existence in order to function. Making it through any given day requires a variety of thousands of decisions to be made: from putting one foot in front of the other for every step we take, to the multiplicity of maneuvers we make in driving our car to work safely, to not biting our tongue with each chew of our food.


So many of our choices hardly seem like a choice at all, as we do them so routinely that we scarcely give them a second thought. But when life confronts us with the invariably important calls to action (or inaction), it’s important that we take a step back and truly think about what it is that we hope to have happen as an outcome.


If we treat life’s big decisions in the same fashion as we do walking, driving or eating, we risk making a move that either we’ll regret or feel forced to apologize for later. It’s wise to take the time on the big choices to think on it, sleep on it, pray on it, discuss with your confidantes about it, or otherwise seek the necessary advice or counsel to reach a sound decision.


I’ve mentioned this before, but one good indication that we may need to pause before acting is when we feel an emotional charge. Emotional charges are felt in the body as a response to strong feelings like anger or nervousness. Maybe it presents as sweaty palms, a racing heartbeat, or a flushed face.


When we learn to look for our body’s signs, we learn to tune in and gain a level of mastery over ourselves that serves not only us, but our fellow man as well. By failing to react in anger, we learn to later respond with compassion. And by infusing compassion into our actions, we elevate the world just a little bit.


Choice by choice. Decision by decision. Word by word. Little bit by little bit. That’s the way we make the change.


Shana Stein Faulhaber is a criminal defense attorney with offices in Athens and Corsicana and can be reached via email at


Recommended for you