I’m a big fan of the philosophy that everything happens for a reason, even if that reason is just to teach you a lesson. I’m also a big fan of passing on things that I learn. So, here we go.
A couple of weeks ago, I woke up and my right hand was completely asleep. Nothing particularly unusual there, except that once it “woke up,” I had immense pain from my shoulder blade to my fingers. I didn’t think much of it – sometimes things get tweaked. But then things were just as bad all day the next day. And the next. And the next.
As it turns out, I have a lot of soft tissue damage in my neck and shoulder which caused 2-3 pinched nerves. Now, the thing of this saga is that I could have avoided it all if I had just been smarter and more proactive. If I had taken care of my back ten years ago, or my neck 3 years ago, I wouldn’t have had to deal with the last 2 weeks. My Physical Therapist says things like this happen all of the time. People put things off, wait for things to get better, and then one day, they are faced with a really serious problem.
There’s a lesson here.
It’s a universal pattern with universal results
This lesson can be applied across the board, and the ramifications can be a lot worse than what I have experienced. I know someone who was having chest pains for about a year. They didn’t do anything about it and ended up having a very serious heart attack. I know of someone who had debilitating pain in their back. They didn’t get it checked out and it turned out there was something very sad and serious going on that could have been caught earlier – if only they hadn’t put off having it checked out. You hear stories all the time about women who could have caught breast cancer in really early stages, but they put off having mammograms.
Even in business, this lesson applies. If you notice that a crack is developing in your corporation, don’t wait for it to heal itself. Get in there and do it. If you notice that maybe you are losing a lot of followers on Twitter, and if that is important to you, don’t just wait and hope that a bunch of new folks come back. Figure out what the problem is and fix it.
Learning this lesson can be super expensive
I am pretty lucky. My absorption of the lesson came at the cost of a painful arm. It hasn’t been fun, but I have no illusions about the fact that I’m still pretty darned lucky in life. Not everyone gets to learn this lesson at such a low price.
If you are having a problem – whether it’s physical, emotional, psychological, online-related, business-related – whatever it may be – don’t put off getting it looked at and fixed. Yes, it can be scary to delve into a problem and see what is causing it. Yes, it can take a lot of time to get it all fixed up. But is there any scenario in which you would say, “It wasn’t worth it?”
What are you putting off? Do you have a really good reason for it? Have you weighed the costs of putting it off?
Talk to me about it.
Image Credit: http://www.sxc.hu/profile/Mattox