I hope Dondi Scumaci is not displeased that I am going to share one of my favorite stories of hers. This story is the one where she carries an oversized bag on family outings, and finds herself complaining about how she ends up schlepping all of her family members' stuff. Jumbo souvenir cups, jackets, toys, wipes, keys and more have found their way into her bag. Finally her husband shared some wise words – if you don't want to carry everything for everyone, why do you take the big bag in the first place?
We all can easily place ourselves in Dondi’s shoes. As my very cool child is turning 18 this week, I have been thinking about all the carrying I have been doing. How do you start eliminating the weight of carrying another individual’s actions and every move and being aware of another’s emotions for nearly two decades? How do you start looking out for yourself first? Trust me she is and always will be #1, but I will have less contact and less opportunity to daily carry the big bag.
So, I have decided to start trying new activities, and find places I can learn new skills, enriching my life. Volunteering, getting that private trainer and rehabbing a house just might come into play. We all have so many choices. Here I go – I am finally getting ready to tie this back to an aspect of business that I have been witness to more and more within the last decade. Where I have waited to begin to make changes, newer generations are less fearful than I – they are making life changes and organizational changes all the time. There is less binding people to the place that they work. They are consciously making choices and an integral question they ask is – am I happy here? It’s just a fact that mentoring gives people encouragement and opportunities for measurable growth. Mentoring helps people make further commitment to their current organization. Mentoring pays back.
If I were more brave, I would have made alterations while my child was younger, carried the mid-size bag and taken different risks. BTW - it was a total blast raising her so it was hard to pull away – but if I am completely honest with myself I did have opportunities to jump ahead with my planning. I am going to be asking guidance from several mentors on my new journey – I have a plethora of options as everyone I know has been though the same life change that I am approaching.
So – find a mentor to help you carry a mid-size bag, and accomplish what you can. Oh yes, and don't be hard on yourself.