Opinion

ROUNDABOUTS

Robin Saba

A type of circular intersection or junction that were first standardized in the UK in 1966 and were found to be a significant improvement over previous traffic flow system.  Also known as a traffic circle or island, roundabouts permit vehicles to travel in one direction around the central island, and priority is typically given to traffic already in the junction.

The virtue of a roundabout is, that you can drive your vehicle in a circle with the flow of moving traffic before you make your decision to exit onto the road that will take you further on your journey. The difficult part is, making the decision to enter the circular flow from your entry road, as you have to time it precisely with the flow of the vehicles in the circle.

Now if we consider the above definition that describes what the roundabout is, let’s consider what happens when we bring this practicality into our life.

I do not know, how many times I have come to a roundabout in my life, but every time I have arrived at one, I have noticed that I have to start all over again. It`s like I was either going round in circles just like the traffic, or hesitating to enter the flow. I have never been pessimistic, never given-up, but of course when this has happened, I felt down, got emotional, but even so, each time I learned lessons out of these situations.

The biggest lesson I have learnt is, once one reaches the entrance to a roundabout, one has to make ones mind up and take action, otherwise you are blocking others behind you. As well as this, you are misleading the others who are coming from different directions and who are also waiting at the entrance of the roundabout. Once you are in the circle of the roundabout, you then need to know which exit to take and move on with your aim and plan of action. If you don’t know which exit to take, then you are in the vicious circle, not knowing where you are going and chasing your tail by just going around and around.

I have noticed that if you do not know which exit to take, take any one of the exits regardless whether you like it or not. Making a decision is better than not making a decision. In other words, a wrong decision is better than not making a decision at all.

Why? Because by choosing an option you will recognize that in all parts of life there is always an outcome and that it always involves a learning process. Generally it is better to learn from the people who have gained their expertise through experience and who can act as a guide line for you, and can help you make the right decision for a plan of action, whether it`s in your professional life or for your business.

In my life I have always been thinking out of the box, I have always been different. I often took an alternative path rather than the obvious one. It was not always easy, but taking risks with a rational approach has given me the courage to share my experiences with other people and help make a difference in their life. My out-going personality has always been one of my greatest assets and I acknowledge this in myself. If I had been a shy person, I still believe that my way of thinking out of the box would have carried me through. Like the traffic on the roundabout, there`s a choice for every driver.

Roundabouts do not appear accidently, they appear mostly when you are stuck and where you need to be updated or you need to learn new things and make decisions to move certain things in your life, or in the lives of others.

Roundabout situations help us to think differently, they challenge us and help us in our decision-making or leadership skills. We do not need to be scared of making a decision, because when we open up and look around, we see that making a decision can be a creative undertaking, and just like taking that decision to enter the traffic roundabout, the rest will flow.

Driving a car is a good allegory for starting a new task. We all have a switch in side of us and all we need to do is get the timing right to turn that switch on. This switch is the ignition to start our inner engine and use it as our motivation and source of inspiration to make new movement in our life.

Imagine you are driving your car. Think of yourself on a long straight road that seems to be never ending, then at some point you lose your vision, you get really fed-up and want to pull your car over to the side and scream your head off to find a way out of this flat, unchallenging endless road. But just like in life, there is no endless happiness or sadness, no endless sun or sunset, no endless days or nights, no endless pain without gains, and nor is there endless time for decision-making.

So, this is where we get back to roundabouts, we can think of them as change-makers directing us out of the monotony of the long straight road and use them to enter a new road map.

Therefore, we must understand the value of roundabouts. Who has the right of way, and who is already in the circle. How can we succeed not to get caught up in the vicious circle, and how can we find a way not to block the others behind and make a decision, whether good or bad, so that we can move forward.

Roundabouts are there for a reason and it all depends how we deal with them. It is sad if we miss the messages presented to us by the roundabouts or ups and downs in our life.

 That’s why roundabouts are needed for reformatting non-functioning steps in our daily or professional life, just like they do when they make sure that the traffic keeps moving to avoid unnecessary blockages.

At the end of the day it`s all about staying alert, being mindful of the others and making sure that you use the opportunity to go when the chance comes along.

Until the next article, please stay safe and sound and God bless you all.

Robin Saban
robinsaban@hotmail.com

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