Are you riding in the passenger seat?

Published 3/1 at 13:29

When we once again are on the brink of a new year, the experience can vary quite a lot from person to person.

Some people spend a lot of time thinking about how the future will affect them, and they may experience a great deal of anguish, especially in times like these with impending recession, continued pandemic and war. Others see changes as challenges and are rather triggered to find solutions to take on new challenges. Some others choose to ‘go with the flow’ and to take action along the way, so to speak.

Where do you fit it with your attitude to the New Year? For my own part, and with increasing age, I have probably become a bit of all three personality types. With retirement age approaching, one tends to be a little more cautious. Over the years, people have learned what adversity means and how the school of life affects them. It is often said that when you get older you become wiser because you learn from adversity. That may be true to some extent, but caution can also be a limitation that one should be aware of and how much one gets drawn into it. I think I still have some of the ability to be triggered by challenges, even though I may be lacking a bit of the energy I possessed when I was 30 years younger.

I also like the expression, ‘go with the flow’. In that I don't mean that you should ignore how things go, but instead to ‘dare’. Dare to throw myself out there and trust that the choices made will carry through successfully. Sure, it's risk taking, but what is life if not risk taking all the time. Without taking risks, life quickly becomes quite pointless. We are put here to live life in the best possible way for ourselves and for others. Sitting in the ‘passenger seat’ all your life and, so to speak, ‘watching’, becomes devastating for self-esteem and self-confidence.

In 2023, we will face several challenges in many ways. For a number of years now, many countries in Europe, and in particular Sweden, have generally had it good. We have had a booming construction market with plenty of work. We should not complain too much. Maybe that fact has made us a little too comfortable. Now we may once again have to start rolling up our shirt sleeves due to changing conditions. Besides that, the pandemic years hit many people hard on a personal level, as many lost loved ones due to the disease. Many players in national economies managed very well apart from those who worked in hospitality, entertainment and the large meeting sector. Through, amongst other things, the numerous large government aid packages, many companies showed positive figures during the pandemic and business flourished. Now the situation is the opposite: no support packages, tight market conditions, energy crisis and war. Very rough throws, so to speak. But don't lose heart, there is life after New Year too, rest assured.

In my column in PDi issue 5, I introduced IACDS new president Douglas Walker and his regular column in the magazine. Unfortunately his column did not make it in time for issue 5, but now I am happy to introduce him again. His column can be found on page 6. Douglas Walker is the founder and owner of the American contractor Walker Cutting Services. Walker and his company have for decades been very active in the US concrete cutting association CSDA and still are. Douglas Walker has amongst other roles played, served as president of the CSDA.

On that note, I am ending my last column for the year; I wish you a really happy and prosperous New Year.

Jan Hermansson

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