*Join me for my three part series on Opportunity: Grasping Opportunity, The Risk of Opportunity, and The Rewards of Opportunity
We all at one point have hit one or multiple slumps in our life. Whether it is a horrible breakup, a death, or a series of events causing us to fall into a state of depression, each of us has definitely had a down point in our life. Will we ever get out? How will we get out?
Many people who have hit a wall of depression anxiously await the opportunity for change. Some of us even come to expect a huge sign from God, or such an obvious opportunity with all the bells ad whistles included. I find many people are waiting for their own parade of fireworks to show them a positive change in their life. However, life is much more mysterious then something so blunt, we just have to decipher the signs.
The high expectation for a way out or a new opportunity to get a jump start into a happier you never happens the way we expect. If opportunity was so easy to find, there would be no lesson on how to avoid depression or climb out from it the next time it happened. For example, the old adage “give someone a fish, feed them for a day, teach someone to fish, they will eat for a lifetime” is very true. If opportunity was easily found, then we would only feed off of the opportunity, instead of learn how to get to that point and find it again. The next time we have a slump in our life, we would not be able to find our way out.
Opportunity knocks in different ways. Even though the unemployed person may not be handed their dream job, their can be hidden inspiration at every corner. I remember in University I paid my own way through school without loans. It was important to me to leave university without any debt. So I worked long hours as well as went to school. I longed for a nice office job that paid a little better then minimum wage, as it is hard for any student to balance full time study with a full time job. I found out that the university was hiring summer cleaners, where you clean out the dormitories and act as maid services for the rooms that were rented out in the summer. It was a dirty job, as students are not the cleanest people on the planet, and it was working long hours scrubbing non air-conditioned dorms. Though this was not ideal to me I took the position. I was quickly taught home repairs, intense sterilization, and I got a bit more muscle dragging leaky garbage bags in and out of dorms. I met amazing international students who also worked there, and many older people who taught me so many life lessons. I had two summers of hard work but fast friendships. It was dirty, grimy, and wonderful all at the same time. Suddenly, I had heard that one young woman in Conference Services; the optimum student job that oversaw our work, had quit. I rushed into the office, covered in cleaning fluid, and asked about the position. They had seen my consistency with cleaning, and my school experience, and after an interview, they hired me. School became a lot easier to pay, and I was able to work in between my classes. Cleaning dormitories changed to taste testing food for banquets, and meeting a lot of the university professors, investors, and staff. Opportunity for me was blanketed in cleaning fluid and dirty dormitories. However, I had to appreciate the fact that I was lucky to work at all, in order to see the opportunity that lied ahead.
Opportunities for a life change may shadow themselves as other things. The aspiring writer may work in the mail room of a publishing company and then be discovered, or at least learn how the publishing process happens. The aspiring singer may not get the record deal, but have thousands of avid fans and listeners from singing on youtube.com. Opportunity may not be exactly laid out in the path we think it should be, but it comes in a much more interesting way, and the mystery is how we interpret it. If life was laid out exactly how we saw it, we would 1. Never learn anything from our experience and 2. It would take the excitement and mystery out of everything.
Opportunity has many changing faces, it is up to us to see pass the smoke and mirrors of our ideal answer to our problems and analyze everything as a potential opportunity. Opportunities do not come often, so we must take the time to look in every corner for them.
*Please read on next time with the Risks of Opportunity*