Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Don't Force It

A young friend of mine recently tried to move a table for me. This particular table has collapsible legs. There's a little trick to collapsing the legs. You must squeeze a metal bar to 'release' each leg. When you do this one step, the leg collapses effortlessly.

My friend didn't know this and didn't really 'look' at the leg of the table to see how it worked. Instead, he just forced the legs down. As a result, he bent the metal bars completely out of shape. It ruined the table.

Bending metal takes effort. The proper operation of the table when collapsing the legs is completely effortless.

There was a great opportunity for learning here. He had to exert force on the legs of this table in order to collapse them. Quite a lot of force actually. He didn't realize he was damaging the table by exerting this force.

When we have to force something, be it a table leg, a relationship or an opportunity, we are most likely heading for trouble. Effort is one thing. Struggle or resistance is another.

If we encounter serious resistance in any endeavor in life, it should be a 'cue' to us to STOP, ANALYZE the situation and see if our current approach is valid... or not. Often, intense resistance is a cue to redirect!

A broken table is no big deal. The lesson it offers us, however, can alter our life.

Forcing things rarely works! If we are having to force something, it is time to reexamine things!