I often have joked that I need to find a job creating the word or phrase of the month that are introduced into the corporate world and used in every conceivable form of communication.  Most of the time, these words and phrases ring hollow with me.  Transparency.  Circle back around.  Bandwidth.  Opportunity for learning. Reduction in force.  After drowning in a sea of corporate speak, a new word was put into play, and for the first time, it resonated with me.

Pivot is in the spotlight right now, and while it is a word that I am familiar with, it is not a word that I ever thought would end up being so impactful.  I became familiar with pivot when I played basketball in grade school.  I learned to set my pivot foot firmly on the court before pivoting to avoid a defender, to get open for a shot, or to safely pass the ball.  On the court, it is important to master the art of pivoting.  I have come to learn that it is even more important to learn how to pivot when off of the court.

As more uncertainties are looming in my professional and personal life, I find myself in a position to pivot yet again:

I am pivoting to avoid the defenders.  While no-one is trying to steal a basketball from me, there is the very real possibility that my position, and those of some of my colleagues, may be eliminated in this latest round of layoffs. My fate in my current position is completely out of my hands at this point, but instead of focusing on that fact, I decided to pivot.  I have pivoted away from my own thoughts of the what ifs and worst case scenarios, and I have focused on the task at hand and continue to strive to do my best work each day.

I am pivoting to get open for a shot.  As I await to find out my professional fate, I have pivoted to explore new career opportunities.  My parents taught me that the best time to look for a job is while you already have a job, so, I have been doing just that.  The thought of starting over is a bit intimidating, but the thought of not putting myself in the best position possible to move on, if needed, is even scarier.

I am pivoting to safely pass the ball.  I have pivoted to delegate tasks, as needed, and to pass off my concerns, both real and imagined.  I have had to ask my daughters to pitch in a bit more with household tasks, and I also have had to ask my parents and close friends for more emotional support.  I do not want to burden anyone at all, but thankfully, they are willing to share this latest burden to make it easier to bear.

In basketball, once you have avoided the defender, taken the open shot, or passed the ball, you are free to pick up your pivot foot and move to another position on the hardwood. This uncertainty shall pass, and until it does, I will continue to pivot and prepare to reposition myself.

That’s another story.  .  .

Categories: That's Another Story

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3 replies


  1. Building Blocks – That's Another Story

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