During my morning run a George Michael song came on and started to fill my ears. While I was listening to the song, I remembered that it was the same song Adele sang recently on the Grammy Awards show. Did you see what happened? After singing the first few minutes she realized she was off key and she stopped the show. She asked the band, the effects people, everyone, to stop and start over. Oh, and it was in front of a live audience of thousands and more than 25 million people watching at home.
It’s one thing for someone to decide they want to start over; it’s a whole other level when it’s done in such a public setting — in front of everyone. That takes real courage. Now keep in mind she is a professional. This is her craft, her vocation, so admitting it’s not going well and to stop is not an easy thing. Could you have done it? Or would you have just kept going hoping no one was going to notice or maybe that is would just somehow get better?
When things are not going to plan, it can be incredibly hard to end the situation and start over. Sometimes it’s a job, relationship or even a bad outfit. When you decide to pull the plug, often there are also feelings of shame and embarrassment. What will people think of me? I am a quitter. Why did I ever think horizontal stripes on this body were a good idea?
When you muster up the courage to stop the situation and start anew, how do you start over? I offer three things to consider. First, acknowledge to yourself and others involved that the situation that it is no longer working for you (trust me, they know it too.) You may not know the next step to take, but first is to stop the insanity. End the gym membership, quit dating the annoying person or throw the outfit out!
Second, shift your focus on what you do want (or achieve or be.) It may be that the role you have is no longer fulfilling and you want a position that serves a bigger purpose. Maybe you want a different type of relationship than you have now. Maybe you want to try those new boots! Find out what you want your new focus to be and aim to take three small steps toward that new focus.
Third step is to take your time. Most likely the situation wasn’t created overnight, so its not going to be solved overnight. If you want a different outcome than before, then the actions you take must be different. I don’t think of it as starting over; I think of it as the beginning of a new chapter. And my book is a comedy, drama, mystery and a love story. So this is just one chapter in a fabulous book. Take your time and let the chapter unfold.