I believe there are an infinite number of times you can start over and I also believe we aren’t told that enough.
When we were kids we were all well acquainted with the “do-over.” We used the words as a noun and all of us knew exactly what it meant. Simply put, it meant the event was an outlier and there would be no consequences for failure.
If the kick ball got stuck in the tree branches, we all just yelled out, “do-over,” and the ball was retrieved and the kicker got another chance. We didn’t take the ball getting stuck in the tree as any real reflection of the players ability nor did we think the game needed to be disrupted because of this one moment.
We all had such wisdom back then.
But then someone always came along who wanted to discredit the “do-over.”
This test is not a do-over!
You can’t just have a do-over whenever something doesn’t work out!
You have damaged our relationship and I won’t let you have a do-over!
This is real life! There are no do-over’s!
I argue that in every situation there is an opportunity for a do-over. Remember, a do-over was an outlier, something that was not deliberate and hey, a lot of stuff just happens.
I’m not talking about the kid who tries to throw the ball when its kick ball or picks it up and runs with it to keep it away from others. A do-over has nothing to do with the person who runs and gets the adult when they feel they are being slighted by the rules or the neighbor who gleefully takes the ball when it lands in their yard and won’t give it back.
A do-over is just one of those things that happens now and again.
Here are a few examples from my own life when I should have acknowledged the “do-over” potential,….
My husband who is wonderful and loves me dearly, has a busy month and forgets my birthday.
My son, who works and goes to school, knocks over an open bottle of laundry soap as he rushes to get to class.
My mother, who promised me we would do lunch, makes plans with others instead.
My good friend borrows my platter and breaks it.
To my utter dismay I admit after I got over the initial anger, I held grudges and often brought up the issue to the other person involved. I did not acknowledge the “do-over” potential.
Jobs can be “do-overs,” and I have had some of those also. Granted those are tougher not only to recognize, but to get over because it’s all tied up with money or status or identity or pride.
I had a job once that I really didn’t like, but I was fortunate to have a boss who believed in the power of the “do-over.” She asked me if I even liked the job as she was going over how badly I was doing the job. I showed some uncommon good sense and told her point blank I hated it and then we both agreed it was best to part ways. But she recognized the skills I had were simply not meshing with the job and she ended up giving me a great recommendation which helped me move onto a new job that I love.
That is still one of my most beloved “do-over” moments.
There should be more relationship “do-overs.” Every had the lover that you just all the sudden didn’t love anymore.Don’t you wish you could just yell, “Do-over!” and then you could both agree to never see each other again with no hard feelings. Or the friendship when both of you realize you really only share one interest together and now that the Chopped – Barbecue-Cheese-Kids- Championship Marathon is over, you could apply the “do-over” principle, no harm done.
There are some who say the whole experience of life can also be a “do-over.”
If you don’t get it right this time around, don’t worry you will get another chance to try again.
My plea to you, dear friend, is to look out on your life today and everyday and recognize your “do-over” moments.
Laugh while you run to get that ball down from the tree and feel the joy of the moment when you kick it back into play.