As I am writing this, I am sitting in an empty house. After five weekends of painting and cleaning, tomorrow will be the day that movers descend upon this empty house and fill it full of furniture, boxes, and all the other outward and visible signs of my life.
I’ve just come from my old place that is now full of the boxes that will be delivered here tomorrow. When you’re not the one doing the packing, you get to sit around and do a lot of thinking. Thinking about the memories of the place you are leaving, wondering if what you are doing is the right thing, and hoping that the new place will work out the way you thought it would when you signed on the dotted line.
It’s called starting over. And it is a huge change, often fraught with risk.
How many times have you started over in your life? New place to live, new spouse, new child, new job, new state to live in, or new direction in your life?
I’ve done it quite a bit, thinking back on it. Starting over doesn’t get any easier with time, but planning helps out more now when I make such a transition.
Because starting over is such a big change, many people are not willing to go the distance to risk starting over. Instead, the stay with what makes them sad, or frustrated, or even in danger.
Yet, starting over is a critical skill. While it is hard, one needs to get to when it is right to start over and figure out how to gauge and reduce the risk. Starting over blows the past away. Not like the past never happened, of course. But starting over — and acknowledging it — means that the past is really the past.
That is a powerful change.