Becoming me.

Changing lanes without changing direction is no change at all.

Changing lanes without changing direction is no change at all.

If you are burned out, you’re paralyzed. Or, nearly so. I should know. I’ve been burned out. I felt overwhelmed by my job, with all of its demands and responsibilities. At the same time I felt under whelmed by my job, which I no longer found exciting or even interesting. All the good had been chewed away.

Something had to give. In desperation I shifted, pivoted, assumed a new stance. But, I failed to face a new direction. I had no idea where I was going. I hadn’t planned that far ahead. I only knew I had to try to be different.

I got off to a great lurch, not a great start. Optimism stalled. I stalled. It would take much more to get me to punch through the morass of the day-in-day-out routine I had created for myself. It took a personal tragedy.

So, it happened. I heard the fell voice say “I’m leaving” and then I fell, down in a mangled heap. It took a bit of time for me to realize I had a bigger decision to make, one larger than the decision that had been made for me

My life had been forever, not just changed, altered. The question became, now what? Would I turn and march all the way back to where I was, where I had started, only to walk the same path all over again? Or, would I take this as an opportunity to change everything. I chose neither.

I decided to become rather than change, to become as close as possible to what I was supposed to be in the first place. To stop changing me and start becoming me, being me. I believe there is a difference. I believe in the difference.

Some looked at the changes I was making and said I was being courageous. If courageous means fearless then I am neither. I fear plenty.

I fear spending just one more millisecond of this precious life in the pursuit of sameness. I fear bidding my time while not exploring this awesome world. I fear not knowing the fullest extent of my capabilities. I fear not having the freedom to do all that I want, all I feel I need, to do.

No, I didn’t become fearless. I became dauntless. I became bold.

I bet you have felt his same way. If not, do you not feel that you should feel this way? Looking back, it is a shame that I wasted so much time, so much of my life not being true to who I am. I would not wish that on anyone.

I will share something else besides. It isn’t a secret. It isn’t magic. It doesn’t take a tragedy to break out and break free. Become dauntless. Become bold. Become.

Does this connect with you in some way? If so, how?

Written by

Clark Gaither, MD

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