A few years ago, my younger sister and I were the first ones down the tunnel to 1)board our flight for 2)Norfolk, 3)Virginia. Just as we were about to board the plane, a 4)mechanic emerged from inside the aircraft and blocked the door with his arms. He turned to the flight attendant and hurriedly stated, “We got problems!”
I thought to myself, “Why did I have to be the one to hear that? Why couldn’t I have been at the back of the line? I didn’t need to know that!” Very soon we were back in the 5)terminal, waiting, and then ultimately back on the plane. I waited for the pilot to give an explanation. Pilots take courses to ease passengers’ minds, right? They know what to say to calm nerves.
Unfortunately, I don’t think this pilot took that course. Soon his voice 6)boomed throughout the plane, “Sorry for the delay, ladies and gentlemen. We had no power on the plane. We have a 7)generator on the ground right now, and we are going to 8)jump-start the engines. Once we get them going, we will get up in the air and head to Norfolk, and see what happens.”
That was it. That was all he said. See what happens? We are going to get up in the air, and see what happens? Couldn’t we have another plan, one that’s been worked out just a little better?
At this point, all I could do was to laugh nervously. One woman started yelling, “Oh no! We are going to crash!” There were sighs of desperation and anxiety spreading throughout the cabin like a tidal wave, and we hadn’t even taken off yet. Thirty minutes passed and we were still sitting there. Then the voice of the pilot came over the 10)intercom again, “Ladies and gentlemen, I know you are frustrated—so are we—we know you are hot, we only have one engine going right now, and it is working 11)double time.”
There were moans, as if we had all boarded a 12)vessel of 13)doom. It seemed that, we were all seated in an 14)aluminum 15)casket, 16)buckled next to strangers. After all, the pilot said he was frustrated. He told us our one engine was working double time, and his elaborate plan was to get up in the air, and see what happens! Then we did. We got up in the air, and what happened? Nothing—other than 17)thrust and 18)lift. We arrived in Norfolk, and no sooner had the wheels touched the 19)tarmac than a round of applause burst out, as everyone throughout the airplane simultaneously breathed a sigh of relief.
Although, I do sincerely like to have a plan better than “see what happens” worked out when flying—it really isn’t such a bad life strategy. All too often, I would see people chasing their goals halt frozen with 20)inaction just because they don’t have all the necessary pieces or guaranteed results, when in reality—they will never have all the pieces. Success will never be guaranteed. The best thing that you can do is, just get up in the air, and see what happens. Sometimes adjustments would be made in the air, or shall we say, in the middle of the process.
If your effort is to build a business, then listen closely, “Get up in the air, and see what happens!” Don’t give yourself all the reasons why you can’t. Do not wait until you have everything you need. You never will!
If your mission is to start a friendship, say “Hello”; get up in the air, and see what happens! Don’t stress over what you will talk about—21)wing it, and make mid-air adjustments. The results could be very rewarding. Do not allow yourself to stay on the runway, just because you feel the flight may seem doomed. In friendships the only doomed flights are the ones that stay on the runway.
If your goal is to learn a new skill, “Get up in the air, and see what happens!” It might not be as challenging as you thought. You might be smarter than you thought. It could be fun!
When traveling, I still hope that my pilot has a more detailed plan than, “We will see what happens.” Although in life, it isn’t such a bad strategy, after all.