A Tale of Two Choices: Wait or Act

Ink on Mixed Media Paper – Words: Simone de Beauvoir

Action sounds easy and yet in our new reality it can feel like a daunting task. I spoke to two different people this week, both unhappy at work. Neither one is challenged or inspired anymore by what they do, both want to change their lives. The first one is going to relax, exercise more and ‘be patient’ until things get back to some level of normal. The second interviewed for a new job and was told the decision would be made next week. Both are facing the same challenge, both reacted very differently.

Let me talk about the first person. They have been with their company nearly twenty years and enjoy the team they work with, just not the boss they work for. They can navigate the job without thinking and enjoy it enough. This person has a sense of fear and dread and ‘hopes’ that soon all this crazy COVID-19 strangeness will end soon. They are going to control what they can control which is exercise, relaxing more and working harder to separate work from home life. Their actions have let me know that they are gambling on the future, hoping it is better than today.

So what makes the second person different? They started looking months ago, as soon as they began putting pieces together about the direction their company was headed. They have been with the company almost ten years and also like the team they work with but not who they work for. Their attitude is act now – like the Simone de Beauvoir quote encourages – because if they don’t act they are leaving their future in someone else’s hands. They said it was scarier to wait than to act.

Did I mention that both people work for the same company? Did I mention they are around the same age? Both people also have their financial futures set by age 45 and have good marriages, supportive family and great credentials. Such similar circumstances and yet opposite reactions to action. One is waiting and one is acting.

We are in life where we have chosen to be, plain and simple. A lack of action IS indeed a decision. Waiting is a choice like just action is a choice. If we don’t like where we are in life then we need to make different choices. What choice are you putting off? What one are you waiting to see what happens? How do you think your life is worth acting now? What do you want is the future that you want badly enough to act? Without delay, do it now. The things you set in motion may take longer than you think to materialize, so the longer you wait the longer you will continue to wait. Act now!

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