I was talking to someone on Facebook this week and they let me know that because of downsizing and other disrespectful activity, the company that they’d given so many years for had laid them off and hired someone cheaper.
His statement was, “I get to start all over again.” And while I admit, no one who has invested years of hard work and sacrifice wants to go back and start over, it does have its advantages. Here are five I can think of:
- When you start over, you have the wisdom of the years that you’ve put in. You know what will and won’t work better than anyone else. And by itself, the wisdom that you have gives you an advantage over anyone who is younger, even if they are better educated.
- You have the advantage of not having a lot of overhead. You can stay lean and nimble. You don’t have to spend a lot of money. The gatekeepers are now powerless because the price of entry to most things these days is a fraction of what it used to be.
- You have the advantage that you can move fast. Any new learning or opportunity you have today, you can do. You don’t have to call a lot of meetings or consider a lot of hurt feelings, you can move and make decisions.
- You have the advantage of being able to learn new skills that you can add onto your already acquired skills that augment and make you valuable.
- Most of all, you have the advantage of gathering smarter, better, more generous people around you. Over time, we tend to collect people who were good for us at one time, but have long since become toxic. It’s great to jettison the old baggage for the new.
Here is the truth in the new world. You’re probably going to have to start over more than once. The day of starting when you’re in your twenties and going for forty years in a career that’s always up and to the right, advancing with more prestige and money is over. And I’m actually glad. Because, let’s face it, if you do the same thing for forty years you are in danger of acquiring the disease of entitlement. And that’ll kill you.