I was reading a story recently, about a people who, hundreds of years before, had migrated from their homeland and come to a new, and unknown “Promised Land”. Although the new land was not quite perfect, part of the people had made the most of it, and prospered, and the other part, still pining for home, were less successful. The second group eventually built a culture and a city, to remind them of their ancestral home, even naming their city after it. In a sense, all these years later, they were still longing for the good old days, and still less prosperous than they could have been.
It occurred to me that sometimes we can be just like this people, perpetually looking behind us, seeking safety and security, even though even greater prosperity may lie ahead. Like the biblical story of Lot’s wife, facing the past immobilizes us to the point that we are unable to move forward and enjoy the fruits of change.
I get it, change is hard. And as humans, we are naturally risk-averse. Years ago I left a secure, though underpaid position, for the insecurity and potential of a new role. Though in the long run I ended up not being a fit for the role or the company, part of that is on me. I found it difficult adjusting to a new corporate culture, and struggled to leave the old role behind. Eventually, I found a new role in a new organization, only this time, I was happy to leave the ill-fitting role behind, and it was much easier for me to look ahead and enjoy the new organization.
So, my question for you today, is which way are you facing in your life and in your career? This global pandemic has left us feeling pretty insecure. Even leaving the house is risky. And many of us have had to deal with economic and personal losses. But it is also a great time to be alive. The sky is bluer, the air is clearer, and there IS opportunity available, but we have to choose it. We have to look ahead and move forward, trusting that we have what it takes to be successful, despite what’s going on around us. It may be scary, but it could also be really good.
What will you do today to face forward and take the next step?