We spend a lot of time stuck inside of choices that we know were mistakes because we are too proud or too embarrassed to just admit that we changed our minds. What’s wrong with trying something?
I think that’s maybe why so many of us are afraid to try anything. Because what happens if we try it and realize it’s not right? Tell me which is worse– trying something and changing your mind, or not trying at all for fear it’s not right?
When it’s put that way, it’s a pretty obvious choice, right? Exactly. That’s what I thought.
Just because you make a choice doesn’t mean you aren’t allowed to change your mind. I was talking with a friend a few weeks ago–and she was confessing that she was just so afraid of making the wrong choice. Of living the rest of her life stuck inside all of her mistakes. And hearing her admit that shattered me, because until that very moment, I hadn’t realized that was exactly what I was afraid of, too.
When someone comes to me for advice, I can find the words to shock them back to life. And far too often after ending a call I find myself looking into a mirror shaking my head. Why can you tell them but you can’t take your own advice?
I told this friend to stop putting so much pressure on herself. Make the choice that feels right then reevaluate. If you find you don’t like it, do something else. Simple as that. I told her to be more like a Roomba. When a Roomba hits a wall, it doesn’t just give up, continuing to smack itself into the same corner over and over again. No. It backs up and tries another direction. It might take it a few times to get it right, but that doesn’t stop it from trying. Eventually, the room gets clean.
It’s been a few months, but I’m ready to admit it now. I changed my mind. Only a few months after launching Blush Communications, I dissolved the company. So much work, so many hours, flushed right down the drain. I could very easily see this as a failure, but I don’t feel that way at all. It was entirely my choice, my decision. The point of starting that business was to be my own boss. To do what I wanted. I didn’t know it wasn’t what I wanted until I gave it a shot.
But the truth is, running a freelance communication’s business made me feel important but it sucked the life right out of me. Guess what. When you work for clients–you’re not really your own boss. Instead, you have several bosses. And I wasn’t writing what I wanted to write. I was doing what everyone else wanted me to do. So one morning I woke up, and I dissolved it all. I changed my mind.
I’m one step closer to success because of that, well, failure for lack of a better word. If I never tried it, I would have always wondered.
I chose the route of the Roomba. I hit a wall. I backed up. And now I’m trying a new direction. Eventually, I’ll get it right.