No More Boring! Move Forward

Danielle Putnam
Contributing Writer
President, The New Flat Rate
Past President, Women in HVACR

The bridge to nowhere was 5 miles from the nearest paved road. Bridging a 75 foot ravine, into the side of a mountain like a dead end with no sign. I didn’t research how the bridge got there, who built it or why…but as I stood on the edge peering down into the raging river below, I couldn’t help but notice the enormous boulder in direct center of the rapids. I heard voices, but everything in my head was a blur. To jump or not to jump wasn’t a question. I was going to jump. When was I going to jump? Now that was the question. Looking down, looking up, looking down, looking up…then looking outward, forward, and ahead. That’s when I jumped.

Fortunately, the bungee did not fail me as I swan dived closer and closer to the boulder in the middle of the river that was approaching faster than I could catch my breath. And then suddenly the recoiling bounce up as the pit in my stomach found itself again and my screams became less intense.

I’m not sure if there is anything as scary as bungee jumping. The adrenaline rush is intoxicating. And when it’s over, the relief is indescribable but not because it was so scary you wanted to be done, but because of the accomplishment! The facing of your fears. But the paralysis before the jump has the potential to seize all of your rewards…

I often state in moments of frustration, “Indecision is paralysis to my business!” Like “playing possum” when you’re simply coasting instead of aggressively moving forward. Coasting along waiting to see what happens if you don’t make the progressive decisions you know you should make. But in reality, possums don’t really play dead. Who knew! When threatened, frightened or in distress, the possum goes into shock.  They fall into this involuntary shock-like state, “playing possum”. A paralysis when facing their fears. For the possum, the shock is involuntary, but for us, well what is our excuse?

Playing possum mentally and physically not only delays the inevitable; it also invites the kind of change you don’t want, the kind that happens to you without your input or inspiration. If change is good, if change is needed then for goodness sake, make change happen, don’t be a bloody mess on the highway of life.

What areas of your life are lying dormant? What creative marketing ideas did you have long ago for your business that never made it onto paper? What ideas do you have today? What customers did you not appreciate soon enough?

• Change is progressive

• Making decisions is progressive

• Testing ideas is progressive

Moving forward is progressive. The first step to begin moving forward is to be honest with where you are at today. I was on the bridge to nowhere, I was standing on the ledge, but I DID have a bungee rope tied tight…so I already KNEW what to do next. Jump!

When ideas come to you, write them down. Start them. Let’s not coast in busyness, let’s put a stake in the ground, make decisions and move forward. The moment we stop thinking for ourselves and freeze “playing possum”, is the moment we begin a life of paralysis.

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