Monday 29 September 2014

"Feet First"

When I was younger my family owned a cottage in Lake Muskoka.  I remember being nervous about jumping into the murky water as I was sure the fish would bite my exposed feet.  I reflect on this phobia now as a metaphor for life.  Jumping into something new is one of the great challenges we face throughout our life.  And it never really stops until it's over. We jump in "feet first", hope for the best, and then we leave by the same way....... "Feet First"

A few weeks back One Brush Painting quoted on a 1,700 sq. ft. condominium in Yorkville.  The project included all the finish painting on the trim, baseboards, walls, doors, and crown molding. I went home after meeting with the contractor to put together a quote for the project.  The quote was accepted quickly and the next day we started.

Within a couple of days of doing prep work I realized that the project was much bigger then I had originally expected.  We were under a tight 2 week deadline and were not allowed to do any work off business hours.  I had anticipated the project taking 160 hours to complete and we only had 102! I managed to convince the homeowner to speak with the concierge to allow me to come in on Saturdays to catch up.  While painting the baseboards in preparation for installation the homeowner and I were speaking about what she wanted.  She mentioned that this was the last place she was hoping to live in and that she was looking to leave the condo "feet first".  

I thought that this project might bury me.  I spent countless nights rolling around in my head how to finish the job while not having electricity, time, and tripping over other tradespeople that were frantically scrambling to have the project completed on time.  The only solution was to hire another painter to make up the hours.  

In the end we finished the project in the final hour as I was literally painting the last door while the carpenter was still putting the trim on it!  Exhausted, I went home to review the project.  We had jumped in head first, gotten our feet wet, and though there were fish nipping at our heels the entire time, nothing bad had happened.  And we were still alive.

Life is a constant challenge where taking big risks are all part of the game.  It isn't always possible to play it safe by simply dipping your toes in.  Sometimes you have to just stare straight into the murky water, with all the biting fish swarming, and jump in head first.  After all, you can't go out "feet first" if you dive straight in!

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