The second chance | Sunday Observer

The second chance

You have to trust in something - your gut, destiny, life, karma, God, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.” — Steve Jobs

When I visited Dinesh, my good old friend and business associate, a few days ago at a private hospital recuperating after an operation, he had a story to tell me. Listen to his own words:

“Anyone who says they haven’t at some stage secretly rejected the prospect of old age and death is a liar or has amnesia. We take health for granted until illness intervenes. I’ve never had any doubts that I was indestructible - until two years ago.”

“First, the pain was minor, a nagging little ache. But it was there just the same. With time, other symptoms began to appear. Added together they were threatening, except that I didn’t add them up - at least not consciously. This is where what is known as the immortality syndrome begins to surface. It comes out as a strange reluctance on the part of the patient to face the facts - a kind of resistance to reality based on the “what you don’t know won’t hurt you” philosophy.”

“In my case, knowing the symptoms inside out, as it were, what better person than myself to appreciate that I needed skilled attention? But I found a hundred reasons for not making an appointment.”

“Suddenly my calendar filled up with urgent meetings, trips, lunches, dinners and exhibitions - all of those engagements too important to break. I will make an appointment soon, I thought, but not just now. Because I don’t have the time. It was a direct contradiction of my belief that nothing was more important than personal health”.

“Then, something happened. One of my college mates died. After paying my last respects to him at his home, I was seated out in the garden when I faintly heard a comment made by a family member. He said, “He had mild aches and pains for some months but didn’t care about them. Now see, what has happened.”

“The next day, I ran to see my Consultant doctor. He worked his way through a couple of dozens of tests for nearly three weeks. By the time he finally announced that my problem was not life-threatening, I’d been through several little hells.”

“My other doctor talked steadily as he worked, keeping me informed at each stage of the findings. Both doctors came to the same conclusion: there wasn’t any developed cancer, but I might need a routine operation. I needed regular check-ups for a long period”

“I had been given a second chance. If I had waited another few months, things would have been worse. Maybe, irrecoverable! It was as if somebody had suddenly lifted a weight off my shoulders.”

Second Chance

What if you were given a second chance at everything you’ve ever done in your life, would you take it? I would. Not because I messed up things the first time but because I truly believe in the power of second chances.

I believe, when life presents you with the same scenario twice, it is giving you a chance to do things differently, to recreate the perfect scenario you always wanted. A second chance is sometimes a miracle in disguise. As Steve Jobs says, it may be destiny, karma, God’s wish or whatever.

Ask yourself: How many relationships and friendships were restored because the second time around things were different and made more sense? How many milestones have you achieved at work when your boss gave you a second chance to do things right after a major flop?

You could have made many mistakes; or you could have made many wrong choices; life could have taken away from you the people you loved, or the things you loved, due to your wrong choices.

Yet, life is fairer than we think, because it always gives us a second chance, whether we deserve it or not. But, something we need to remember is that a second chance does not delete the consequences of our past. Any decision, behaviour or action from our past would have a consequence, but a second chance means we have the possibility to do things differently.

We can change ourselves for the better; make different choices, learn from our mistakes, and do everything in a different way that will benefit us and everyone around us. That is exactly what a second chance is, the possibility to create a better tomorrow.


So, instead of sulking and feeling gloomy, allowing desolation to creep in because of your failure, keep up expectations with a ray of hope - a hope to get that hard-to-get second chance. It may transform your life in a way that you always wanted to and waited for.

That second chance can give a new meaning to your existence and help you regain the lost confidence that is affecting your happiness. That second chance will help you make a decision, whether you can still fight against all odds and make things sail smoothly.

It’s all about believing ‘this is not the end of the road’. Life will always give you a second chance, as Steve Jobs says, but only if you trust that it will. Look around, analyse situations and ask yourself - Hasn’t life been kind to me ever? Has life always given me miseries, not giving me a chance to correct my mistakes?

Maybe, you haven’t been attentive enough to notice and grab those second chances that came your way at some point. If you have got used to living with regrets and don’t want to take the given second chances, then it’s not fair to blame life.

Life isn’t all about trying, failing and then regretting forever. Keep steady, hope for a second chance, and once you get it, make the best of it to make a real change in your life.