It’s 7:20 p.m. and I just finished changing a headlight in the family minivan. Not a big deal right? It is when it’s dark and 34 degrees. I learned a few lessons I’d like to share with you.
Life can be difficult. I’ve changed many headlights over the years so it shouldn’t have been difficult to change this one. But, every car is different and the methods to change the lightbulb are different too. It’s amazing how similar that is to life. You may do something over and over again but if you’re put into a new situation, it may be difficult to do that same thing.
Sometimes we experience false starts. By that, I mean when you work on a task for a while and then realize what you’ve been doing is completely wrong and have to start all over. I did that tonight.
It appeared as if I had to remove the battery to be able to get into the headlight mechanism. So, I unbolted it and started loosening some other bolts. Then, I realized that even if I removed the battery, I would not be able to access the headlight. I had to start over.
Before I bolted the battery back in to place, I thought I needed to seek help. Yes, I looked at the owner’s manual for directions on how to change the lightbulb.
Don’t be afraid to seek help. It’s good to take a few minutes to figure something out before you ask for help. But, don’t waste too much time if there are easily available directions just waiting to be read.
Things are not always as easy as they seem. I thought I would be able to change this lightbulb in five minutes. Forty-five minutes later, after having removed the radiator cover and headlight mechanism from the body of the van, I was finally able to access the headlight compartment.
Don’t get discouraged when something takes longer than anticipated or is more difficult. Use the experience to learn. Maybe you don’t need to remember how to complete that certain task again but you can at least learn something about yourself. I did!
Don’t give up. My ears and nose were freezing. My fingers were going (and still are) numb. I wanted to stop. But, I want my wife to be safe when she drives the van. So, I pressed on.
Whenever you feel like giving up, think of just one reason why you’re doing what you’re doing. If you have a good enough reason, you will keep going. If you don’t have a good reason, maybe you don’t need to continue.
Never, never, never get so frustrated you just quit. Focus on the positive instead of the negative.