Down, Then Up

So last night I lost my re-election bid for the Regina Public School Board and not just by a little, but rather the winner had double the votes I did.  I just got crushed.  How am I feeling?  Well like any person I’m a bit upset by the entire thing, you do put in some time, money and effort into running a campaign, so to see it was for nothing is disappointing.  That’s the down.

Yet at the same time I have to realize something important.  I only thought I wanted to do the job again.  My heart and full effort wasn’t into the campaign from the start.  I let myself lose this election, not really at a conscious level, but on subconscious level I certainly did.  Why the hell would I do that?  I’m tired.  It’s been three years now of me running around doing three jobs and I can’t do it anymore.  I enjoy all the work I do, so that is why I found it so hard to let go of any of it on a conscious level.

In the end I couldn’t decide what job I enjoyed more: writing or the board work.  So I let fate decide by running a minimal campaign.  If I had won, I would have likely stopped some of the writing I do.  Yet I did lose because in the end I think I had to let go of the board work.  I enjoyed the board work and learned so much about business, working with people, public service and politics.   Yet for sake of my family, not mention me, something had to give.  Four more years of this would have been a recipe for disaster.  I was stretched so thin I was becoming transparent.

So now I’m on the up as I realize I get to celebrate not a lose of an election, but rather gaining back 10 to 15 hours a  week of my time.  I no longer have the stress of making the big decisions about school closures, strategic student achievement targets, or lobbying the provincial government for funds.  I get to worry about the education of only 2 kids (my own) rather than 20,000 of them.

While I’m still mourning the loss of that part of my life I’m looking forward to other adventures.  I’m still paying off my mortgage next week and I’m still saving for early retirement.  Perhaps with a little time I’ll realize what I’m just starting to feel:  I’m happy I lost.

Have you every been in a situation where you thought you wanted something?  How did that turn out for you?

6 thoughts on “Down, Then Up”

  1. Hey – thanks for doing the job for the last three years. School Trustee is basically a community volunteer position and it’s a ton of work – so good on you for doing it. You’re basically the ‘complaint department’ for everyone. And I know how difficult it is to run an election like that, it’s exhausting.

    I ran for trustee years ago and lost. The opportunity to run again just came up and I seriously considered throwing my hat into the ring again. Then I considered how much work it is to get elected, and how much of a committment I would be making if I did get elected (because I would throw 100% at it) and decided I’d be better doing my volunteer work at a different level right now. Maybe when I’m ‘retired’ I’ll look into this again.

  2. Tim,

    This is certainly a gain for us readers, if it means you will have more time and energy to devote to writing!

    Sounds like you are taking the election result really well and have a healthy attitude. It’s too bad your conscious level didn’t alert you to your preference not to serve on the school board again before investing in the election but, whatever way you have to get to a conclusion is the way that works. Hope the person who got elected is committed to the job.

  3. Sorry about the loss, but here’s hopin’ the blog will benefit. I still love this place, but it hasn’t lately reached the heights it acheived when Tim produced his 5 part opus on early retirement calculations (which is my bible). Those were the days!

  4. Sorry to hear about the loss, but it seems like you’re taking it well now.

    When I was starting to look for a software developer job, I thought I had found the perfect company. I talked to the recruiter for ages, read up on the company, submitted and re-submitted my resume and when I finally got an interview – they just didn’t like me at all, lol. It worked out, because if I had worked there, the experience I would have gained would have NOT led me to my current position at all, and I am very happy with where I am now.

  5. Well thanks everyone. Actually now that I’ve had more time to process everything I think this will work out the best.

    @Jon_snow – Oh the irony that you mentioned that series I was planning an update to that, but I was waiting for the election to finish up so I could stabilize the numbers. It should be up in November some time.


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