Purchasing a property which had stood empty for over 5 years, with falling down buildings, and covered in 5 foot high stinging nettles was always going to be a project. It’s easy to walk around seeing everything that is still falling apart, the broken windows, leaky gutters, and mud. It is also easy to remember enduring the bullying and threats of eviction by the railroad which runs beside the property and the other unfortunate discoveries throughout the year. The past 12 months have had it’s fair share of challenges even without COVID.
But I can also walk around the property and see the change we have been able to bring to the property. The introduction of vegetable beds, flower beds, the removal of countless nettles and junk, the planting of hundreds of trees, and the addition of ponds. Not to mention some of the amazing people we have met who live in our hamlet or in neighbouring ones or have kids in the same school as ours. The past 12 months have been filled with incredible experiences and joys.
And so it is with change. It is easy for change makers to see what still needs to be done. Sometimes to become depressed about the slow pace of organisational change. To see only what still needs to be done.
It is helpful to remember what still needs to be done is only part of the picture, not the whole thing.
And yes, hindsight is 20-20 (ironically). Therefore, when we reflect, when we look back and remember where we have come from, there will be decisions we made that we wish we could do over or make a different one. That is normal. However, rather than focus on the decision we wished we would have made, our time and energy is better spent thinking about what we learnt and how we can apply that learning to future decisions.
And it’s helpful to remember that often we only know what we know now by having taken the path that we did.