I was chatting with my pal Ephraim the other day.
When I say “chat” I mean messaging because he lives in Bet Shemesh, Israel and I live in Vancouver, Canada. (I suppose one day we might find a half-way point, and meet on Ilha das Flores in the Atlantic Ocean, although more likely in New York when he is state-side).
I asked how he was doing. Family. Work. Loss. Upcoming Bar Mitzvah. All.The.Jewish.Holidays. “As you know, life has its ups and downs. That’s how I am.” he wrote.
I countered, “Roller coaster or elevator?”
“Good question – never thought of it like that! Right now elevator.”
Life does have ups and downs. Sometimes it’s painful. But imagine a life that was completely even.
No disappointments, no heartbreak, no fender bender, no missed goals, no missteps, no words you wish to take back.
And… no celebrations, no wins, no challenges overcome, no reunions, no happy news to share, no fluttering heart.
So, consider your highs and lows as elevator or roller coaster.
On an elevator, movements tend to be more controlled. At most you may move 40 floors or so in one swift rise. Or maybe you inch up, floor by floor by floor (perhaps some wise guy hit every button simply to vex you). Maybe a voice announces each stop, or you may even enjoy the services of an elevator operator opening the doors and chatting with you on your short journey (like at the Smith Tower). When you enter an elevator, you usually get to choose your destination.
A roller coaster – well, that’s another kettle of fish. You don’t always know what twist or plunge (or corkscrew) is coming up next. Fast drops give your internal organs a momentary feeling of weightlessness. Adrenaline shoots through your body. Maybe you feel queasy. Maybe you squeal with delight. Maybe you close your eyes the entire ride and hold on for dear life. On a roller coaster, you often pay for the ride (one way or another).
But at the end of the ride – roller coaster or elevator – you usually step onto solid ground.
However your life or career is going right now (and as a fundraiser it can certainly be either)…. even if you are thinking I-don’t-want-to-be-on-this-ride-at-all…
it will eventually stop. You will make it.