Don't overdrive your headlights
As a die-hard New Yorker, I learned to drive after I moved
west as an elderly twenty-one-year-old. Night driving was
a special challenge and the instructor reminded me, "Don't
drive past your headlights."
Over the years, I came to understand what he meant. I learned
to look for reflectors, signs and lights, and to drive slowly
on country roads that lacked these amenities. I also learned
that I could drive much faster when I had driven a road many
I think about night driving when people ask, "How fast
should I go in a life transition?" Counselors, consultants
and coaches often say things like, "You need confidence!
Your confidence, like your car's headlights, will allow you
to move forward. You know where you are going and you can
handle what's ahead.
You don't get confidence when someone says, "You're
wonderful!" You gain confidence the way you learn to
drive country roads.
Go slow until you learn the way. If you feel nervous, you
can develop your skills, find another route, or even delay
your trip so you can drive in daylight. You might feel better
if you have a map, so you won't be surprised or wonder if
you're lost when you see signs pointing to places you've never
Sometimes you have to tell yourself, "Look, I've done
this before. I've never had an accident. The roads are dry
and the sky is clear. Let's move!"
You have to respect your own inner wisdom -- and sometimes
your realistic concerns can be
misinterpreted as lack of confidence. You must go at your
However, you know you need to get to your destination, somehow.
You can't stay here forever. Once you're on the road, often
your confidence grows as you move. And next time you'll know
|Cathy Goodwin, Ph.D. is an author, career coach, and
speaker. She works with mid-career professionals who want to make a fast
move to career freedom. Visit her site http://www.movinglady.com
or call 505-534-4294.