Sunday, January 13, 2008

A time for breaking down?

“For everything there is a season… a time to break down, and a time to build up”

I have found myself being caught up in focusing on creativity and creating things – my mindset telling me that to do something good, you must create something amazing. Or at least build something up by adding to it creatively.

Now, I look at the extract above and believe that this is a reminder to myself, and possibly others, that although this is often the right approach to life’s opportunities in many circumstances, it is not the full story.

There are times where we need to break things down before we can go forward and build properly. Think of a house being built on poor foundations… that house will never stand the test of time regardless of how well it is has been built or which materials have been used, since it is only as strong as the foundation it is built on.

One person I greatly respect often quotes CS Lewis, who said something along similar lines: “We all want progress, but if you're on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; in that case, the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive.”

I have never advocated breaking down, simply because most people I come across believe in a destructive breaking down, regardless of what it is being broken down. Breaking down is also generally a painful and sometimes devastating experience with consequences that need to be dealt with and pushed through. However, in this context, breaking down becomes a positive and progressive act, something moving us toward our goal rather than away from it.

We all face circumstances at times where we sit with poor foundations in some part of our life. Now, before you go ahead and build your house, may I challenge you to carefully assess those foundations, if necessary, break them down [taking care not to be reckless] and rebuild them strongly before continuing. In the short-term, this won’t be easy, and many around you may label you insane for what you are doing – as you will be perceived to be going backwards. Your reward will be in the long-term, where your house will stand stronger and longer than they [or you] could ever imagine.

This is certainly one of the challenges I take forward into the coming year. Should you take it up as well, I trust that you and I will be able to build stronger than ever before.

1 comment:

Grant said...

Hey Darren,

Totally agree. I find myself in this position at almost the same time every year. (Usually around now).

I find it can be a real relief to simply start from scratch. Having said that, a vital element of being able to do this, is to first make sure your house in order. All lingering issues and problems need to be dealt with, all admin taken care of (renew your passport/ID/Drivers license). Only then can you move forward unhindered.