The sound of gunshots echo in the distance. Suddenly they're all around you. Bullets flying past your head and striking the bricks above the wall you’re taking cover behind. You’re trying to find a way out. Heart throbbing in your ears. Sick to your stomach. You think it’s all over for you. . . All of a sudden a serene almost unsettling silence comes over the battlefield.
What. Do. You. Do?
Sometimes in life, we can feel like we’re getting hit from all directions. Finishing up my senior year in nursing school, coupled with chasing a Lieutenant position within the Air National Guard and working as often as I could left me feeling as though I was pinned down behind a cinderblock wall getting fired on from all directions. But... every now and then we experience these periods of silence. These “Lulls in Fire.”
What’s the temptation when that happens? Personally, the natural temptation is to take a breather. To rest with the lull, while the enemy reloads, and try to gather your bearings. Sad thing is, a lot of times these “natural temptations” are what cause people to fail. In this case specifically, that temptation is going to land you back exactly where you were to start with. Pinned down. Getting shot at. From all sides.
Obviously, we’re not all getting shot at day in and day out, so what can these “bullets” be related to? Maybe they’re bad grades. Going through a breakup. Not getting a position you were hoping for. Dealing with horrible bosses or bad employees. The bullets can literally be anything and everything that life has to throw at you. When life starts to run out of ammo and has to reload, are you just going to sit and wait to get smothered again? What do you do? How do you optimize this “Lull in Fire”?
It's super simple. . . You readjust.
You take your gear, your motivations, your aspirations, your goals, and you haul ass out of that death trap. Where are you headed? Probably depends on why you were pinned down in the first place right? Take me for example. I just got through managing nursing exams, work, and putting together multiple military officer packages. To top it off got handed two rejections in a row for those packages! What do you think my immediate temptation was. . . That little demon on my shoulder started whispering "Just accept your fate, no use in trying anymore you already failed TWICE."
Are we going to just sit and pout while that little demon reloads his guns and starts shooting at us again? Heck no. We're gonna get ourselves to some high ground where we can detach from the "battlefield" and see the big picture. Once we're able to see the whole puzzle and aren't stuck focusing on just surviving, our opportunity to identify a new target and attack it comes into focus.
Reposition, Refocus, Re-Engage.
The only person that can decide to change your pace, is you.
**I AM NOT A COMBAT VETERAN. I merely use the “Lull in Fire” analogy as a way to convey this important concept.**