Don’t Jump Unless You Have Somewhere To Land.

Jan 22

Don’t Jump Unless You Have Somewhere To Land.
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Recently I was catching a bus. At the bus stop I became engaged in a conversation with a dear 84 year old lady. When the next bus came we got on without really checking the number. It was going where I wanted to go, but it wasn’t the bus I wanted.
I knew this all the more when the bus I wanted drove past the bus I was on. You see, the bus I had chosen was full of people, much older and generally uncomfortable. I noticed the other bus was newer, had fewer passengers and that was definitely where I wanted to be.
As we went down the road these buses passed each other a few times. I knew that if I wanted to be on the other bus all I had to do was act, but I needed to plan my move.
I watched carefully the position of the two buses and waited until we approached the next stop. I knew I only had seconds, but that’s all I would need.
I knew the other bus was coming up the hill behind us, which meant it was going slower than if this stop was on flat ground. Our bus stopped. I thanked my driver and alighted with haste, making straight for the back of my bus waving to the approaching more comfortable and spacious bus.
The driver saw me and it turned out to be a very smooth move indeed. I don’t think anyone knew what I was planning, but I was now sitting in spacious comfort, feeling bad for the occupants of the sardine tin pulling away from us. I had made it. I had acted. I had benefitted.
There was risk, but it paid off.
So, how does this story relate to changes you may want to make in your life? There are often times where you wish you had a better job, a better place to live and the list goes on. You will no doubt know what YOU would like to change.
Here are the things I had to consider in planning my move:
• Could I clearly see my goal?
• Could I sustain my risk not paying off?
• Were the benefits worth the move?
• Was the timing right?
Let’s look at these with a view to applying them to other more important situations.
Could I clearly see my goal?
I knew what I wanted, but I had to research to ensure that my goal was real and that I could reach it. As the better bus passed a couple of times, I checked by looking out the window that I wanted to be there. I also observed the other bus so I knew as much about its movements as possible to make a sound decision. Was it stopping at all stops? Had I read the route number correctly? Conducting this research gave me clarity about my goal. There was no guess work involved. I was basing my decision on researched fact.
If you’re going to make a significant change in your life, it is important to clearly understand where you want to go. Someone once told me, only invest in what you understand.
Could I sustain my risk not paying off?
I knew where I had to be and when. Arriving at my destination punctually was very important. So, I couldn’t put that at risk. However, as I thought it through I realised I was early enough to catch another bus if my jump failed. There is no point making a risky change in life if you cannot afford for it to go wrong. You are better to stay where you are and wait for a time and place when you can take the risk. Gather strength for another day if the risk today is too great. You might want the new job, but can your family afford for you to have no job?
It is said that you should only gamble what you can afford to lose. You must be sure that a set back won’t put you out of the race entirely.
Were the benefits worth the move?
I have caught a lot of buses and I knew the one I was on was quite old and uncomfortable. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m generally just glad to be moving, however I had seen something better that I could access.
What I had seen I knew was more comfortable and, upon close inspection out the window as my target bus drove by, it was less populated and yes, it had the comfy seats. If I could pull off the move successfully I would soon be in a quieter and more comfortable situation which would give me space to think and work during my travel.
When you’re looking at changing, make sure you don’t just see the green grass, because you know what they say about the grass on the other side. Check the details, do your homework and know beyond any shadow of a doubt that this change is worthwhile. Time taken here is well spent and important. Think objectively.
Was the timing right?
I knew I had to move at just the right time. I had to know where the other bus was in relation to where I was at. I had to consider the incline of the hill and how that would give me valuable seconds. If the time was right I would make it. If it was wrong, I could be left behind.
Major life changes rely on the right timing to work. Have you considered if you are ready to move? How are you positioned in relation to where you want to go? Will you fit in there? Is there room for you? Is it what you need or what you want? Can you make the move safely and seamlessly? Ask the right questions and don’t get swept away by romantic ideas that aren’t furnished with an objective point of view.
OK, so all I was doing was trying to get a better seat on a better bus. Not very important, right? However, in this simple experience I saw a bigger picture and how that could benefit future decisions in my life.
The right change at the right time could be life changing in itself. However, if you have a lot riding on your decision and people relying on you, it is worth being as sure as you can be. Don’t jump unless you have somewhere to land.

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