Generally, sports analogies drive me nuts. But Vince Lombardi said this, and I think it came from an old adage way before his time anyway that said, when the chips are down, you are down, or whatever is down in your life, it’s not the down part that really counts. It’s whether or not you get UP from that downtrodden place that truly matters.
This was wisdom I had in more than one conversation of late. In the most recent version, I was sharing coffee with a fellow person passionate about what he does. He said he’s been getting frustrated with his work–not so much with the work itself, but instead with getting knocked down by trying to move forward at his company–try new things, grow, provide better and different service to customers, etc., but his manager just wasn’t on board. There’s a million reasons why–money, time, lack of patience, fear or a combination thereof usually in business. But my reply back to him was the same reply I’ve shared a dozen times in the last month: you’re down, I get it. But how can you channel that energy into getting up?
Trust me, trying new things is painful sometimes. You can get challenged, beat up, scoffed, laughed at, put down, and literally knocked down at times. Sometimes people don’t understand why you want to try new things; they want to keep the status quo, stay in the same place forever, and they want you to stay in that same place forever too. That may work for some, granted.
But that, in reality, isn’t always the best option for the change makers, the game changers, and those who truly want to keep moving forward in their lives. If this happens to be your boss, or his or her boss, or someone else at a higher level of your organization (or your life, for that matter)–yes, you always must first ask yourself what it is that you’re going to do to change the situation. BUT–I’m here to tell you, dear friends, that sometimes that means moving on. While we want to hold on to the past sometimes because we feel the obligation to hold tight, sometimes that just isn’t the best for us. We must keep learning, exploring, trying new things, and developing as people. That’s just part of the true human experience.
If your boss doesn’t get it, well, then maybe it’s time to ask the really tough question: is it time to change your boss? Change your situation?
It is always difficult, but sometimes, sports analogies aside,…it is right.