Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Living Happy #18: Admitting When Something Is No Longer Working

Things change, and sometimes we're a little slow about accepting that fact.  The way you feel about a person can change--or the way they feel about you.  Your job can change.  Your neighborhood can change.  Your financial needs can change.  Some changes are good, but some are not.  The world is in constant motion, and change is constant.

Sometimes we don't want to admit something has changed in a fundamental way and is no longer working for us.  Very often, we go to extraordinary lengths to fool ourselves into believing everything is just fine.  Nothing has changed we tell ourselves.  And that disconnect between reality and fantasy will generate a lot of angst in our lives.

When things change, you have to deal with it.  If you realize one day you're no longer growing in your current job, and there's little on the horizon--no matter how comfortable you are in that position, it might be time to start looking for an alternative path.  If the constant drama of a friendship is taking more out of you than it's adding to your life, it might be time to stop spending so much time together.  If you're bored with your life, instead of pretending life is still great, perhaps it's time to begin growing again.  Perhaps it's time to expand your horizons.  But don't think these kinds of things are going to get better without any action on your part.  Things very seldom stay the same, and once they change, they seldom go back to the way they were before--very little in your life is going to change without you directing that change.  Don't just drift along waiting for something good to happen.  That's naive and stupid.  And it won't happen unless you make it happen.

You can't solve problems you refuse to admit you have, and you'll never be happy until you live in the real world.  More often than not, you're only fooling yourself.  And if you can be honest with yourself, you'd probably admit you're not even fooling yourself--you know exactly what you need to do.  You know what's no longer working in your life, and you probably know how to fix it.  You don't want to.  You just aren't willing to make what could be life altering changes.  That's because you waited far too long--well past that point you should have acted.  You're afraid of change.  Better the devil you know--right?  And by the time reality slaps you in the face, there's so many things wrong in your life you don't know exactly where you got off the right path, or how you'll ever get back on the right path again. 

It's much easier to make small changes and adjust as you go along in life, instead of being forced to make huge changes well down the road.  But it's never too late to get back on the right path.  It won't be easy, but instead of focusing on the the challenges involved in getting back to where you need to be in your life, focus on the rewards of making those tough choices.  Having less stress.  Having more rewarding friendships.  Feeling as if you're growing and contributing something in the workplace again.

Don't go through life pretending to be blissfully unaware of things that have been staring you in the face for a long time.  Suck it up, buttercup.  It's time to make a change.

~Todd E. Creason

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