Platitudes: Meaningless or Motivating?

Giving it away right up front. Platitudes drive me crazy. Sometimes I (quietly) roll my eyes as I read about everything always working out as intended, always getting what is meant for you, never getting more than you can handle, always being the right time to begin again. 

Social media is full of them and sometimes I try really hard to believe, especially in the ones about starting over in life. As we get older, the life we lived day in and out changes. We have to accept the fact that who we are cannot be tied to a thing. It can’t be our jobs, our friendships, our talents, even our families. They all change.

A therapist once asked me who I was after the school I was a part of closed down. I literally had no idea. Am I a writer? Well, that is something you do, she explained. Who are you apart from what you do? Ummm…what are my options here? 

It has been about eight years since I’ve had a job, and that job consumed every last bit of my life. I was happy to take time to let my body heal from the stress of that job, along with an autoimmune diagnosis, and a lot of life transition.  I needed to breathe. 

It was hard “not doing anything” for so long. But the process helped me be at peace with my value apart from external responsibilities. It’s critical to reach that place if we want to successfully move forward as we get older.

I would keep running across platitudes that claimed age didn’t matter. I had been thinking about getting a part-time job, so I was attracted to these starting over ideas. It’s never too late to begin anew, they touted. Whatever we want, it’s all there for the taking. Yeah, maybe. 

I wanted to work somewhere that was fun and had opportunity to interact with people. The platitudes suggested I might have a chance.

So I clicked on an application to a popular home and garden store in our town, which seemed a perfect place to jump back in.  It required that I attach a resume. Well, that felt overwhelming and I almost closed my computer and quit.

I can do this, I assured myself. Admittedly, my experience had little to do with being a sales associate, but it had everything to do with people. Cover letter? Ok, I can do that too. But I’m telling you…it took some convincing.

The day after I submitted the application, I got a call. Honestly, I was a bit surprised. I thought the platitude might be overstating things just a bit. But, I got a call so what do I know anyway.

My interview is tomorrow and I am looking forward to seeing what happens. The possibility exists that they will say, “Thank you but not at this time.” On the flip side, maybe I’ll get that job.

The difference between a platitude and truth is whether or not they have application in life. I will have to let you know if those platitudes work. By definition, platitudes  are trite,  over used, and often meaningless. Probably just a placebo at best. 

I’m teetering on the line between belief and doubt. It’s just a sales position, but it feels bigger than that. It feels like risk.

“What if I fail? Oh but darling, what if you fly?”

There’s a platitude for everything:)