…the more experiments you make the better.” I love this quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson. I have certainly followed his advice when it comes to my career choices. I guess I shouldn’t call them career choices as much as they have been jobs that I have had. I conducted roughly 10 different “experiments” working in different jobs and different locations in my career as an Animal Trainer. To me, career implies a long period of time.
After 10 years of training animals, I decided to move on to a new “career.” I don’t know what that is yet. Right now, I am a casino dealer. And this will definitely not be a long term career choice. It is just another experiment! It just happens to be an experiment that pays the bills in a struggling economy.
I used to experiment with cars too. The first car I ever drove was my parent’s 1982 Dodge Aries K station wagon. I LOVED that car. No “wood” panels on the side though. My high school friends always asked me, “Can you get the wagon tonight?” We conducted many “experiments” in efficiency. We didn’t need 2 cars to go to the same place. We just piled into the wagon. The first car I bought with my own money was a ’96 VW Golf. This was an experiment in fuel efficiency and low monthly payments. I traded that in for a 1998 Pontiac Firebird, an experiment with muscle cars, although it’s motor wasn’t very “muscley.” I traded that in for a 2001 Nissan Frontier pickup with 4 doors, because no one else had a pickup truck with 4 doors. It was a 2 wheel drive truck that did quite well in Florida. Once I moved to Connecticut and slid on the ice and snow into the telephone pole at the bottom of our driveway on two different occassions, it had to go. Failed 2 wheel-drive experiment. I purchased a new, 2003, All-wheel Drive Subaru Forester and have since ended my car driving experiments. However, someday, I will own a Porsche.
I’ve experimented with “friends.” I don’t talk very often to my friends from high school but thankfully, Facebook helps us to keep in touch. I haven’t talked to most of my college friends in many years. I had friends at the various jobs I’ve had. But, once I left the employer, I left many of the friendships behind too. People and pets (yes, they are friends) come into and out of our lives all the time. Some move away, some just drift away, and sometimes, bad things just happen to good people. It’s life. It happens.
Sometimes, we “follow the proper procedures” and the experiments are a huge success. Other times, despite our best efforts, the experiment blows up on us. What’s important is our reaction. Do we panic and scream? Do we grab the fire extinguisher? Do we blame the result on someone else? Or, do we take responsiblity and learn from the mistake.
I like being bold. I like taking chances. I like the surprise of experiments working well. I don’t like experiments to fail. But I keep trying. I try to fix my mistakes and give it another shot. What about you? Are you now struggling with a decision, a potential experiment? What have you tried that worked out very well? What’s gone horribly wrong for you? How did you respond? Feel free to let me know.
Be Kind. Be Thankful. Be Significant.