what to do when you find yourself in a dilemma

what to do when you find yourself in a dilemma
Photo by Jon Tyson / Unsplash

The first step to gaining clarity is acceptance. You must accept that you don’t know what’s the right path ahead for you. No matter your age, gender, or status in the socio-economic spectrum, there’s no shame in admitting that you are clueless and confused. Rather, it’s a good thing — a sign that you’re about to learn some new insights and experience some much-needed growth.

In the ancient Indian epic Mahabharata, at one point in time, we find Arjun in a state of utter confusion right before the Kurukshetra War. He had to make one of these two choices: walk away from the battlefield and let history label him as a coward and a traitor, or stay and fight and let the future generations revere him as a hero and a great warrior.

Arjun didn’t want to charge ahead and kill his own blood relatives and people that were near and dear to him in spite of their wrongdoings. These feelings of kindness and compassion made Arjun an extraordinary human being amongst others. Any other person would’ve picked to fight without a moment’s thought, but Arjun was different. He didn’t think of himself or his army alone, he wanted the well-being of the people on the opposite side too. And so, the war truly was within Arjun’s heart, not on the battlefield.

In those moments, Arjun didn’t act with haste or out of any kind of social pressure. Instead, he chose to resolve his inner conflict right away on the battlefront no matter how long it took. He simply turned to his close friend and charioteer Krishna, the Lord himself, and asked him for his advice.

We must do the same when we find ourselves confused about what to do in a challenging situation. Go within and talk to the divine power that rests within you. Have a conversation with your higher self, your conscience, your inner being and soon you’ll be guided towards the right thing to do in a given situation.

Just retreat to a quiet place, shut out the noise around you, and listen to your inner voice. You’ll soon find it gently whispering the right advice in your ears.

Following this advice might not always be easy. On most occasions, it will be very difficult to put it into action and might involve making some trade-offs and sacrifices. In addition, it might make you sad and even unpopular amongst the people in your immediate circle. But later on, you’ll find yourself content and at peace with yourself, knowing that you did the right thing even though it was incredibly hard. In the long run, after all, this is what really counts. As Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius once reminded himself, “Just that you do the right thing. The rest doesn't matter. Cold or warm. Tired or well-rested. Despised or honored.”