One of my earliest jobs was pulling weeds from our family garden. At the time, we lived on a farm with a lot of land and at $0.10 per row, I could easily earn $10 in a weekend. That may not be much today, but at the time it was plenty for my young self! One of the more difficult things about weeding is knowing what is the intentional plant versus the weed. That gets easier as plants grow, but in the early stages it can be very difficult. The judgment to know what to pull and what to leave is acquired through experience. The more I weeded–the more I knew, which meant I could share with my siblings as they got interested in earning some money. In my second and third summers of this work, I figured out that pulling the brussels sprouts as young plants meant I didn’t have to eat them later in the year. That seemed like good judgment to me! Except my boss stopped paying me for those rows. Hrmph.
The longer we operate in a paradigm, the more we exercise our judgment. We make decisions based on our experience, which can lead to rushing or short-cutting, (as happened with the brussels sprouts) so fast we forget the longer term impacts. We are all grappling with decisions about masks, social distancing, connection, and boundaries. Let this be the time you slow down to breathe. Slow down to listen carefully and read information with your critical thinking skills. The decisions we make today will live well into 2021 and likely beyond that.