This week my employer joined the growing ranks of organizations who are being forced to trim their payrolls. No telling whether my job, or those of the smart, creative people I work with, will stay or go. No telling when we'll know. It's not a unique circumstance these days, of course, but just because the list of those hit hard by the lousy economy grows longer every day, doesn't make the uncertainty any easier to deal with.
But then again, what's really different?
I go to bed at night and assume I'll wake up in the morning. I assume my family is safe. I come home and assume my house will be there, not burned down or blown away by a tornado. I drive over a bridge with no fears that it will collapse and I won't crash into something on the highway. That if I grab a hamburger from the drive-through, I'll eventually clog my arteries but I won't be afflicted today with e-coli. That if I turn the faucet, clean water will come out, or if I flip the switch, light will fill the room. That terrorists won't fly planes into my building.
None of that is certain. But if I worried about all of that, I'd spend my days in a quivering heap. And that's my inclination in this situation.
The truth is, my job isn't really any less certain today than it was a week or month or year ago. I just took it for granted, as I do so many things that aren't at all certain, and aren't even expected by many others with whom we share the planet.
So, I just need to get over it. Deliver value today. Do the best I can to help turn things around. Appreciate what we have today (and schedule that doctor appointment while I still have insurance....) Just like Mr. James, enjoy a good belly-scratch now and deal with tomorrow when it gets here.
Because one of these days, I won't wake up in the morning, and I don't want to have wasted all the time between now and then worrying about what I can't be certain about.