Don Paglia | Marriage and Family Counseling. Constellations Workshops


Tip #18:

“The two best times to fish is when it’s rainin’ and when it ain’t.”

     Patrick F. MacManus

There is the now old, but famous, Samuel Beckett play called: Waiting for Godot. It is about waiting for God. The opening time for the play passes as the audience gets more and more restless. Eventually, an actor comes out from behind the main curtain to somewhat explain some technical difficulty and cause for the delay, and then starts to chit-chat and waste time with the audience until it begins to dawn on the audience that this is the play.

 Beckett’s play highlights the existential crises of his time when he wrote it. Unfortunately humanity has not changed one bit in those 60 years since this play was written. It remains relevant in our present times. Godot never comes, and the play suggests that life has no meaning and is full of suffering. While Beckett didn’t say this, I contend it is up to each of us to create meaning. And certainly to not wait in doing so.

There are two main points to the play:

  • You only live once.
  • This one-time life is short.

 Whenever I see couples that seem stuck in a hum-drum existence, and need some essential changes in order to bring about their stated desires – such as having an alive and joyful marital relationship, I chide them by asking, “What are you waiting for? Go for the gold!”

 I also telling them that whether one ever gets to one’s stated goal(s) or does not, in the end we still die! I do not say this to be morbid, or to frighten them. I am trying to motivate. I want them to take on an urgency. Now is all we have. Nike was onto this with their old “Just do It!” campaign.  Don’t wait for opportunity; create it.

 I love it when experts tell us this is the wrong time to buy a house, or start a business, change careers, or any other such things. You may detect some sarcasm here. That’s because it’s all nonsense. It is never the wrong time to do anything one’s heart desires. Opportunities abound. We just need to look for them.

 There is an old tale of two shoe salesmen that each travel to a remote area of Africa. One writes back, “This is terrible, they don’t were shoes here.”

The other writes, “This is wonderful, they don’t wear shoes here.”

 Often we spend so much of our energy in the “should we or shouldn’t we” stage. This ambivalence, if we remain in it for too long, will zap our energy and even bring about depression. Once one decides to take decisive action all that energy is then freed up and released to now be utilized towards making the decision happen.

 Life is always meant to be lived – lived fully and lived now. Even so-called mistakes are precious and can have value. It’s far better to make “mistakes” early. It’s even better to not make the same ones too often. The best way is to learn and grow from them. That’s why mistakes are potentially valuable. Good judgment results from making bad judgments. In reality there are no mistakes, only learning experiences.

 Do not delay in following through with what your heart is telling you. Make haste. You have eternity to be dead. Until then keep on living and doing and being fully engaged with your precious life – the only one you will ever have.

 Perhaps Mark Twain said it best:

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor, and catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

 Maybe now is the perfect time to grab your rod and tackle; rain or no rain. No telling what might come of it.