What you can do

A few years ago I was at a company where I felt urgent changes needed to be made. The changes felt so obvious to me – and it felt frustrating that it wasn’t happening sooner. Whether I was right or wrong is irrelevant.  But I felt the pain of inaction keenly – how could we not be making changes? How could we wait?

And then a mentor of mine told me I had three options:

  1. I could write my ideas down and wait to see if I was right.

  2. I could use what skills and power I had to try to make the changes.

  3. Or I could quit.

Immediately, my tension dissipated. What she told me re-framed the problem around what I could do. There wasn’t any “wait and see if it gets better” and she told me clearly that many of the changes I wanted were unlikely to happen. But assuming agency allowed me to take action on what I could push forward, and well, relax, on the other stuff.

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