Welcome to the first article coming out of ‘Left field’ No explanation necessary, let’s just get straight into it. If you’re one of the many, as opposed to one of the few, then the words ‘There’s no way I can do this’ will have either crossed your mind or ventured forth from your lips at some point.
If you grew up with a passion or a hobby that took up most of your spare time, then I’m sure you’re one of the few. When one of your parents friends, a neighbour or even one of your teachers asked you ‘What do you want to be when you grow up ?’ then you would have had an immediate answer, be it Doctor, Fireman, Nurse, Racing Car driver, or whatever. It was a ‘No-brainer’ as I like to say.
How Did That Pan Out ?
Well ? Let’s get this out of the way right at the start. Are you a ‘closet’ what ? You’re doing a job but it’s not the one you always wanted to do. There’s no shame in that and you shouldn’t spend too much time dwelling on the ‘What ifs’ and ‘What might have beens’ as they do not serve you and only cause you to look wistfully off into the distance when you should be finishing whatever designated task you have before you, including driving, eyes on the road.
Circumstances change over the course of our lives and most times there’s nothing you can do about it. Here’s one of my own examples, there are many but this one will do for now. I reserve the right to add more at any stage, just to make me feel better and to stop me looking out, over yonder, wistfully. Sigh.
“I coulda been a contender”
The famous line, spoken by Marlon Brando in ‘On The Waterfront’. Maybe I ‘coulda’ been, who knows and like I said just before, it’s not worth spending too much time on it. As Jim Rohn used to say “Don’t sign up for that class”. So, the story, this might end up being the whole post, then I’ll have to change the title but you’ll never know, think about it.
We’re back at school, I’m thirteen or so and I’ve found that I have a talent for being a ‘goalkeeper’, that’s a ‘football’ term for the one that tries to stop the ball going in the net. ‘Soccer’ for anyone that needs translation. My ability was found by accident and I went with it. It seemed that throwing my body all over the place came quite naturally, who knew? As well as the school team I also played for a local team. We were part of a Sunday league.
There was one team that dominated, and I mean they thrashed every other team in the league, consistently. Never lost, never conceded more than a handful of goals the entire season. Then, someone had a bright idea. Why not create a team from every other member team of the league to a play a ‘one-off’ match against the ‘Unbeatables’
So, that’s what transpired. A few hundred ‘wannabees,’ me included, took part in a couple of trials. Slowly but surely the numbers were whittled down to about thirty. These were then split down into two teams (Plus subs) The ‘Possibles’ versus ‘The Probables’ and I was picked for one of the two.
The deciding ‘match’, to pick the final eleven was set up to be a played at a different location to the previous trials. This posed a problem, well, at least for me. I was the only one from our club selected and no one involved was able to take me to the final match. As it turned out, no one at home was up for it either. It was a done deal, or an undone deal. Whichever way you want to spin it, I wasn’t going any further forward.
I’m not bitter or resentful, it was a lifetime ago and I’m sure there were good reasons for me not getting a ‘lift’ That’s just the way it was.
That was one of my ‘What if’ moments. It may well have turned out to be nothing but then again, who knows.
Where am I going with this ? No, seriously, I’ve lost my thread. There’s no way I can do this, is the title, think man, think.
Here And Now.
I’ve got it, maybe. You ‘ve had a few missed opportunities and you’re now in a job that isn’t ideal. It’s alright, it pays the bills and you can take it, most of the time. Somedays you might have a look at the classifieds and wonder if there might be a ‘dream’ job out there, whatever that might be. It is what it is and you’re no different from 99% of the rest of the population. You’re doing what you have to make ends meet.
It’s not like you haven’t got responsibilities. You might have children, a car and a mortgage. Nothing is cheap anymore, if it ever was. Don’t get me wrong, to have all of those things and manage to keep your head above water is deserving of a medal, in its own right.
Anyone pushing you ?
Here’s another thought to ponder over, that’s just occurred to me. For the most part we are the masters of our own destiny, or so we like to think. There are those around us, our circle of friends or family for instance, who are more than happy to add their ‘two penneth’ worth into the mix. Ever heard the phrases,
‘Don’t you want more out of life’
‘You could do better for yourself’
My wife has a cousin who is, or was, a plumber. A good honest profession, people will always need plumbers. He did some work for us. I hadn’t really met him before he started the work, so we only had those ‘small talk’ type of conversations as we bumped into each other as he worked. The job itself was to fit some radiators and lasted a month or so, as his other work commitments took him ‘off site’ as it were. A few weeks after he’d finished and gone onto ‘leaky faucets’ yonder, my wife said that during one conversation, he’d said that I had ‘something about me’ and wondered why I was doing the job I did ?
The comment left me a bit nonplussed, as at the time I was a ‘technician’ in a tenpin bowling centre. The money was alright, the hours were slightly anti-social but I enjoyed what I did and for the most part was left to my own devices. I’d never really thought about how other people viewed what I did. Interesting.
Do other people see something in you that you don’t see in yourself, or is it the other way round ? Do you see your own potential when others around you don’t ? Explore that one, my friend.
Do You Have Potential ?
I’ve never met you. I might, in some form or another, if you leave a comment, but I’d like to think that you have potential. You’re here, reading this post which means you must be starting to think of the possibilities that could be open to you. What’s the adage/idiom ?
‘You never know until you try.’
This post is making light bulbs pop out of the top of my head. As I’m writing this, a name has appeared in my mind. A friend from school, who I’ve not seen in thirty or more years. A few years back I bumped into someone and his name came into the conversation, I think something was mentioned then about a book. Well I’ve just ‘Googled’ his name and there he is on Amazon with three books to his name. When did that happen ? Who told him he could go and write not just one book but three books ? Is that you ? Could it be you ? Have you got the potential ?
Now, you’re starting to think that maybe you have some hidden talent that you might want to showcase. Or you might be thinking that you want to start, or retrain, in a career that is not only going to earn you some more money, but is also going to fulfill you mentally. I was going to say ‘spiritually’ but I mean it in an ‘Inner-self’ kind of way, just wanted to clarify.
If I Can Do It.
Another timeless pot of ‘word soup’ dished up to our ears on a regular basis. Saying that, sometimes you have to take it at face value. Why can’t you do something that someone else has. What’s stopping you ? Six months ago I would not be sat down writing this to you. One day I woke up and decided that I was going to try to change my future. NO, that’s wrong. Not ‘try’. I was going to change my future. Here I am and here you are. The ripples are far-reaching. If, I hadn’t made that decision, you wouldn’t be reading this and the course of our lives would be different. That’s pretty amazing when you think about it.
So that’s what it comes down to, I guess. Making a decision. Let the chips fall where they may. Well, maybe not so melodramatic. It is down to you though. I made a choice to change direction in my life. Being here isn’t where I intended to be but I’m happy that I am, very happy.
Even now I’m changing the direction in which I want to go in. That’s evolution of sorts. I’m evolving, growing. Part of an audio presentation I listened to once, described it like a plane flying on its way somewhere. You have a starting point and a destination but the course over which you travel is constantly changing due to atmospheric conditions. Were it not for the planes’ computer system, who knows where you might end up. It’s making slight adjustments all the time to ensure the plane stays on track and arrives where it should. Nice analogy.
Life is about whatever you want it to be. Nothing is set in stone and you have the ability to set your goals and change them whenever you feel it’s necessary. There are no rules when it comes to the choices you make. Take a walk on the wild side. Take that course, write that book, go build that website. Be all that you can possibly be.
Well, that’s me done for today. Thank you for taking the time to read this post. Please feel free to leave any comments or ask questions below, they’re always welcome.