When I was two years old I had my first eye surgery. I don’t remember much other than a few smidgens about the hospital. That was fifty years ago and today I went to an eye specialist again. Things have greatly changed over the decades. When I pulled up, the building was three stories tall for only eye doctors. There was valet parking. Valet parking for the eye doctor’s office, I couldn’t believe it. When I entered I was shown to the check in kiosk where my driver’s license and insurance card were inserted, scanned, verified and then returned. I was shown to the waiting area and people were watching movies to pass the time…at the eye doctor’s office.
When I got into the examination room, the tools looked familiar along side a wall mounted computer screen for my eye tests, and a remote for the technician to switch the eye chart. She then recorded everything into about twenty-two (I counted) different pages on the computer screen. I was ushered back into the waiting area where everyone was still watching a movie. I was hoping there would be popcorn, but I guess we are not THAT sophisticated yet.
There were five different nurses I spoke to – one for intake, one for the initial exam, one to guide me back to the exam room, and one to take the Dr’s dictation for the medical record system. Oh yeah, and one to text my eyes before anything else happened….five nurses of varying levels and degrees I am sure. When I checked out there was the usual scan of my debt card, a receipt, and the making of my next appointment. I walked past the valet and found my car. The whole entire process from beginning to end was about an hour and a half. I counted almost one hundred people in the place – employees and patients all together. Eye care has become a well oiled machine. Not one out of date magazine or daytime drama on television. It was a great experience and really made me appreciate how times change and for the better.
We are blessed in this country to be able to benefit from the advances in medical technology. I’m not sure an eye doctor needs valet parking, and yet there was a line…so what do I know? I was bummed I didn’t get popcorn!
I had a conversation with someone today who was not sure which road to take in his career. He was offered a different position than what he does currently, and he is not sure he wants to make that change. He is comfortable where he is now and is not sure he wants to go through being uncomfortable again.
You know that feeling. You sit in your chair and realize you are good at what you do and have figured out your universe. Then something comes along and offers you a chance to change. Do you take it? Do you stay where you are? Do you leap into the unknown? Or do you stay where you are and continue being successful at your current level? Choices, choices…what to do?
He asked me what he should do. Wouldn’t it be easy if we all had someone to call who would tell us what to do? They could provide the solution and we would be off the hook. If the solution they provided doesn’t work you can blame them – you were only doing what they told you to do…so no skin off your nose. Unfortunately life is not that easy. If you want to get anywhere or create anything or progress into a better future, you need to make decisions for yourself and be responsible for your own actions. By the way, I did not tell him what to do. I told him no one could make that choice but him.
If you find yourself at a cross roads, only you can make the decision. Give yourself time to think it through and don’t let fear of the unknown prevent you from missing out on a great opportunity. You didn’t know what you would find when you got to where you are now…so why does the unknown have to lead to something worse? Maybe it is better. Maybe it is better than you could have ever imagined. You won’t know if you don’t take the chance.
Life is not a simple walk in the park, it is filled with ups and downs. And if you are blessed you will have more ups than downs. No matter how hard you try, the downs will come and they can feel overwhelming. Sometimes all you see is an uphill battle. All you feel is the effort and energy it takes to get to that next step. All you feel is tired, worn out and behind. Some days you just don’t have it in you to take that next step.
Then someone in your life lends you their energy, their imagination, their joy…and you take one more step. You move forward, you leave behind a tiny bit of the struggle as you overcome the distance. Overcoming is all about small steps to success. No one expects you to be perfect your first time out, only you have that unrealistic expectation for yourself. The rest of us KNOW you will fail. We KNOW you will stumble. We KNOW you will need to get up over and over and over again until you reach your destination.
Give yourself a break. Instead of focusing on the top, just keep climbing…the top will be there when you arrive.