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Friday, July 30, 2021

Lean Quote: A Sunrise Taught Me About Missed Opportunities

On Fridays I will post a Lean related Quote. Throughout our lifetimes many people touch our lives and leave us with words of wisdom. These can both be a source of new learning and also a point to pause and reflect upon lessons we have learned. Within Lean active learning is an important aspect on this journey because without learning we can not improve.

"Opportunities are like sunrises. If you wait too long, you miss them.  —  William Arthur Ward

The sun rises every single day. We have the opportunity to see darkness change to light in a matter of minutes every single day. So why don’t we? Because, for most of us, it’s too damn early!

Timing is everything to us. We use “not the right time” or “not enough time” for just about everything and we, as a society, accepts it as the perfect reason because we use the same excuse to get out of things.

Opportunities will present themselves at inopportune times and we only have two choices when they do show up: believe it’s not the right time and let it pass or grab it and go. The timing will never be just right but the clock doesn’t stop for us until we feel the time is right, it keeps ticking.

Mindset is the first step to being prepared. If we don’t have the right mindset, we won’t be taking that next step, no matter how easy the next step may be. If we’re not setting ourselves up for success, we’re defaulting into failure.

Regret can debilitate us or it can inspire us. We can think about the things we didn’t do or take it as a lesson learned and move on. If we’re constantly punishing ourselves by wishing we could turn back time, what good will that do for our future selves? Regret can force us to live in the past or it can serve as a powerful catalyst for change. At the end of the day, do we really want to regret all that time we spent regretting?

Opportunities are never missed; we allow them to pass us by. But with every passed up opportunity, a lesson will follow; it’s up to us to figure out what that lesson is and learn from it.

Everything is harder in our heads and if we don’t get out of our own thoughts from time to time, we’ll miss the sunrise.

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