Are You a Shark or a Goldfish?
If you are concerned about the future and anxious about your situation, I know how you feel. I lost my job in 2001 during the dot.com bust. The company was losing money faster than we could raise it and eventually the company sank faster than the Titanic. I thought it was the worst event of my life. I was two months away from being bankrupt. I had a wife, two young children, a mortgage, no health insurance, and very little savings. I was a paycheck away from losing it all.
It sounds bad. It felt bad. Seen from one point of view I suppose it was bad. But one day I decided that I wasn’t going to let this challenge take me down. And that’s when I knew I had to change what I was thinking and doing.
I read a few books which helped me make some important decisions through the change. Eventually these decisions would lead to the work I do now as a writer, consultant, and speaker. I often joke that I went from Fired to Fired Up. My layoff led to my life’s mission and purpose. What I thought was the worst event in my life actually lead to the best. I realized that dealing with waves of change is all about how we perceive and respond to the change we are facing.
Change comes in all forms. A new business model at work, a reassignment, a lost job, a new job, new leadership, new policies, new rules for a tough economy, new government regulation, layoffs, personal adversity, professional challenges. Change is inevitable and while we can’t control the events in our life we can control how we respond to them.
When the wave of change hits we have a choice. We can allow the wave to crush us or we can embrace the change, learn from it and ride it to a positive future. We can move forward with determination and faith that our best days are ahead of us, not behind us.
Most importantly we can decide whether we are a shark or a goldfish. Goldfish wait to be fed. Sharks go find food. Which one are you? Share your thoughts on our blog.
I hope you’ll join us for a free tele-seminar Sept. 14th where I’ll share strategies from my latest book The Shark and the Goldfish to help you and your team thrive during change. Register here.