I made a big life change and I’m regretting it. How do I undo everything?
Q: I need to press a reset button on a bad decision I made. Last year I quit my job and moved back to my parents’ house to go back to school in a different field. I am one semester in and very much regretting it. It is not for me. I know I can’t get my old job back, but I don’t know how to start to undo this. I feel that I’ll disappoint and worry my parents, and I’m honestly disappointed in myself, and feel so stuck.
A: A reframe is important here: You aren’t really stuck, though you can’t see that now. You’re just at a crossroads. You decide when to become unstuck, by turning your desire for change into concrete action, and getting started. Reset buttons don’t exist in real life; there’s no instantaneous fix that will restore all your settings to factory defaults. But that’s a good thing, because you don’t want to erase what you’ve learned in this detour. It’s important information that can lend clarity and fuel to the next steps you take. So, start defining your reset as a series of small, concrete steps — some awkward, some annoying, some just hard.
But get going, remembering that in just a few years, one semester’s worth of waylay is going to seem a laughably short blip on the screen. — Bonior, a Washington, D.C.area clinical psychologist, writes a weekly relationships advice column in The Washington Post’s Express daily tabloid and is author of “The Friendship Fix.”