Sunday, October 14, 2012

Should've, Could've, Would've

A few weeks ago I was driving in a city I was unfamiliar with. I had two people riding with me. Ann needed to catch a bus at the city station; Kay needed to attend a meeting at work. All was great; I had turn-by-turn directions to the bus station on my smart phone. We made great time, exited the freeway, made a few turns, then oops⎯no directions on the smart phone. I was on a one-way street in heavy traffic, so I pulled over at the first opportunity and tried to get the last few turns back on the phone. I could not, for the life of me, go back to where I had been on the smart phone screen. I tried to start over and got nowhere, and I tried a GPS (Global Positioning System) application to no avail. In the meantime, I could hear tick-tock, tick-tock in my headwhat time was that damn bus leaving?

Finally, after much consternation and feeling my blood pressure going through the sunroof, Ann said she would get directions and hopped out of the vehicle. A moment later she returned with the comment, “When you need directions, ask a homeless person.” Off we went, and a few turns later, I was able to drop Ann off at her destination.

Tick-tock, tick-tock. Looking at the clock and feeling a bit more composed, I once again tried the GPS app on the smart phone. I had not used this particular application more than a time or two in the past, and had struggled with it just a few moments prior while I was having my complete technological breakdown. Now, more focused, I had the GPS babe calling out my turns while making my way back onto the freeway through the one-way downtown maze⎯simple, and easy. Oh, and Kay made it to her meeting with a whole minute to spare. Tick-tock.

I was not happy with how I handled this situation at all. I am a normally a more focused and composed person, but as all of us do at one time or another, I lost myself in the moment. Losing one’s self in the moment is great if it is an amazing moment⎯this was not even close to an amazing moment! Not wanting to be in this type of situation EVER again. I mentally reviewed what I should have, could have and possibly would have done differently.

  • I should have read through all of the directions before starting out. I could have had a better impression as to what I needed to do and would have more than likely arrived at the destination without pause.
  • I always print a hard copy to take with me when I need directions, but was unable to because I did not have an available printer⎯I could have made a few handwritten notes.
  • I should have known more about the available technology I hold in my hand. If not, then perhaps I could have done it the old fashioned way and carried a map.

Should have’s, could have’s, would have’s⎯not something I like to reflect on. Ultimately, rather than allowing the negative energy to escalate, I should have taken a time-out  to breathe and focus. I would have been able to think through the problem in a more rational manner. This doesn’t mean I won’t have another technological breakdown somewhere along the way, but at least I will know how to get to where I am going. If not, then I'll take it from Ann and ask a homeless person.
Which way to go photo courtesy of sjsharktank