Forty More Days, Day 38–The Do Over

Every once in a while, we simply want a do over. I was talking with a friend the other day. He is exploring a new job opportunity at a time when he is burned out at his current job. “I’ve gone about as far as I can at this place,” he stated, “At a new job in a new place I could start again. It would be like a do over.”

I am a bit unconvinced by his logic. Sometimes starting a new thing in a new place is kind of like starting from scratch, developing new relationships, having to prove yourself all over again. At least in his current role it’s the devil he knows. But then again, it’s a devil and who wants to deal with that on a regular basis. I’m afraid I wasn’t much help, other than to listen to him, and so he continues to brood over the opportunity. Interestingly, it’s only an opportunity, but he’s acting like it’s a done deal. “Just focus on this first step in the process and see what happens,” I suggested, “Perhaps the answer will reveal itself to you.” Perhaps.

Sometimes we actually get a do over, a second chance to do something differently. More often than not, though, we can’t go back and re-do something. What’s done is done, and the best we can do is learn from it and move on. It could be that rather than getting a new job as a do over, using lessons learned from the old job, my friend will run right smack dab into the same challenges he’s trying to escape. Part of his process might need to be examining if he is running from the old job or running toward the new one. Is he feeling pushed to leave or pulled toward an attractive new opportunity? I believe he will find it helpful to consider that question even as he take the first step in the interview process.

It makes me a little sad to see my friend struggling. I wish I could be more helpful. But I know that sometimes we have to wrestle with ourselves to get the answers we seek. And while we may seek the advice of the people around us, at the end of the day we alone make our own choices and decisions. I hope for his sake that he emerges with an answer that resonates with where his heart, mind, and spirit are, and that rather than a do over (which feels like repeating something you’ve already done) he gets a fresh start, even if he ends up staying in his current job.

Speaking of do overs, we are nearing the end of our 40 days together. This is my fifth year writing a Lenten blog and it’s been a bit of a struggle. But here we are on day 38 with two more official writing days to hit 40. Somehow we made it together. In spite of a few reposts when I was too tired to be original, we will make it across the finish line once again. I am grateful for the opportunity to share some of my reflections with you and hope you were inspired to do some introspection and reflection on your own. And so it goes.


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