Business, family, life or anything else, include one constant…CHANGE.
The successful manager expects it and manages for it and the unsuccessful manager stands gaping as the riptide carries him or her out to sea along with everyone else who thought everything would always remain the same.
Our family is changing rapidly and one large change we are going through right now is downsizing as one of the girls has graduated from college and the other is starting her half-way point and will soon be done. We are selling our home of seven years and changing our living space drastically and in the midst of all of this my incredibly spiritual and insightful husband had an epiphany.
As we touched up paint, trimmed landscaping, replaced old carpet and generally made our house look as beautiful as it has ever looked, he said, “This is how it works isn’t it? We get used to things and put them off, and only when we are about to sell something do we take the time to really look at it closely and fix it up as close to perfection as we can.” I laughed and agreed that was true. Not only with houses, but cars and other things as well!
He said, “What if you had to sell your life, right here and now, what things would you fix up?”
I was stunned. I started to think seriously about his question.What would I fix up if I had to sell my life? What would I change or do better or do more? It’s been a pretty darned good life. Not perfect, for sure, but exciting and productive and has accomplished some good things…but is it good enough to sell?
I think the only time we even let this thought “sort of” cross our minds is
- when we decide to marry and take another person into our life;
- when we are dying and setting our affairs in order for both family and for God and;
- in rehabilitation when we are truly taking stock of our lives and choosing to rebuild them.
There aren’t many other times that we aren’t just in “living in the house” mode.
So today I challenge myself and I challenge you to think about your life as a commodity. Think about what it is, what it could be and what you would change, do differently or do better to make it a truly desirable product on the “life market.” Dr. Stephen Covey says to “leave a legacy,” and perhaps that is part of making a truly desirable life. It may mean different things to different people, but I do know that nothing, absolutely nothing will change in your life the way you want, unless you decide that you want it to. It will change. Everything does. But only you have control over how you are proactive in your life and how you react to the change that is beyond your influence.
I want a very valuable life and I want to inspire my children to desire one for themselves. One that is full, satisfying, and leaves more than a headstone behind.
How about you?