The results are in. You either won or you lost. There is no in between. You can try to change it from a true or false conclusion by pointing to all the good things that you did. However if you did the work to sit down and set a goal either you met it or you didn’t. It is either yes or no.
If you did win then the assumption is that is a good thing. You can confidently say it is a good thing if you set the right goal. That is a totally different conversation that we will save for another day. But the point is to emphasize that it is only a good thing if you set the right goal. Just because you met the goal you set don’t assume it is good for you.
On the other side of the spectrum the same is true if you didn’t win. Just because you didn’t meet your goal you can’t assume it is a bad thing. Qualifying something as good or bad is not your job, at least not in this moment. That doesn’t mean you aren’t going to do it. You are human and you will feel the need to classify the results of your efforts. You have a brain and you are determined to use it.
You are not Clairvoyant
Yet the truth is just because you have a brain that doesn’t make you clairvoyant. Your life is a journey. During that journey many things will happen. At the time that they happen some will be classified as bad and others will be classified as good. Only time will tell whether that classification is confirmed. Well not just time. Your actions before, during and after will also confirm the classification.
Here is an example to ponder. Let’s say you are given the opportunity to manage a million dollar construction project. You spend 6 months getting the project to completion only to miss the deadline, go over budget and not meet stakeholder expectations. Your employer holds you accountable and wants to avoid having you ever make that mistake again. They fire you after years of employment. You are officially unemployed.
You Really Messed Up
This must be bad. You really messed up. You can clearly see now how you could have handled the project differently to avoid the mishaps. As they say, hindsight is 20/20. Yet the damage is done and it is damage. You just bought a new house. You have two children and one on the way. Your funds are low. This is just not the right time to not have a paycheck.
Yet the classification of good or bad will not be made the day after you were fired. It won’t be made a year after you were fired. It won’t be made ten years after you were fired. The classification will be made when you take your last breath and you can no longer take action on this Earth. That’s because as long as you are breathing you can use this event to either elevate you or bring you down. You have a choice and it is yours to make.
This is not to sugar coat the damage that you may have caused either. Your failing to properly manage the project could lead to your employer going bankrupt. The bankruptcy could lead to several families losing everything they have only to end up on the streets or in shelters. The CEO of the company could be so distraught that he or she commits suicide because they failed to keep this from happening. Your mistake could cause undeniable pain and suffering.
Knowing that you caused that pain could cause you to suffer. You could spiral into depression. You could turn to alcohol or drugs to ease you suffering. You could give up on life too. You could just not think about it and go get another job. Yet in this job you protect yourself and never again take a risk that could cause all that pain. You could just decide to merely exist and get by. You could find comfort in the fact that you can move on. At least you survived.
A Different Path
Knowing that you caused that pain could also cause you to take a different path. You could decide to be the best project manager to ever walk this Earth. You could acknowledge and own your mistakes as a part of your story as to why you are the best. This could be your rock bottom on your rise to prosperity. Those families will still have been impacted by your actions but you could decide to help thousands of families to make up for it. You could be the project manager for 1000 shelters being built in over 100 cities across America. The CEO can never be brought back to life but you could volunteer to work on the suicide hotline and talk hundreds of people out of making the decision to go through with it.
Both choices will result in different outcomes over the journey called life. Your body of work will be classified as good or bad. As human beings we will find a way to classify it. Yet we don’t have to classify events as they occur. Yes if someone commits a crime they should be punished. Yet no one knows if that convicted felon will do something with his or her life after the judge drops the gavel on the 30-year sentence. That felon will go to sleep and wake up each day with a choice. You and I will make that same choice every day.
The reminder, I am Reborn, is directly related to that choice. When you reflect on that reminder every morning you will decide what choice you will make. Hopefully it will energize you to make the choice to take actions to make this world a better place regardless of what happened yesterday, last year or ten years ago. As long as you are breathing you can still take action to classify your life as good or bad. No one can tell you what choice to make. You may easily choose to sulk, suffer or be indifferent. Hopefully the reminder will steer you in a different direction. Hopefully you will decide to learn from your mistakes and lean on your wisdom to make this Earth a better place. As always I wish you the best and remind you to enjoy the journey.