For a climbers to scale mountain faces, those are formidable obstacles, real threats. But for me – not a climber, just nature’s magnificence to observe, take pictures of and appreciate.
Those mountains took billions of years to become difficult to climb. My problems didn’t grow into obstacles overnight either. Too often my obstacles are of my own creation …
I’m reflecting on some recent happenings – some advice from a client who is clearly much smarter than me. His perspective helped. It also diffused a non-problem I had escalated into being an obstacle.
Based on how I’ve handled things like that in the past, I was right. He was right too. Can we both be right while taking different approaches to the same thing? If I think about my current issue/problem, maybe it’s like that mountain metaphor – part obstacles, part scenery.
To me a problem or obstacle to overcome – while to him, just a mountain to look at. In many elements of life, obstacles provide us with opportunities to demonstrate agility, creativity – often just because they are there. Just as often because we’ve encountered resistance in some form.
Could be just the reality of something physical or some legacy system which is immovable, no matter what we do. Yet pushing against it strengthens us somehow, in both our muscles and our resolve.
Resistance might have been deliberately placed there on our path by someone – or without any thought or malice or ill-intent at all.
I’ve observed in myself and in others that we react to and push against obstacles as if they are there to thwart us, that they must be overcome, rather than recognizing ‘they just are’, sometimes to be observed and thought about, sometimes as new problems to solve. Not always foes, just things along our path …
If solutions are needed, should they be created in an instant or can I take my time?
Too often we think quickly, react quickly, shoot from the lip and don’t take much time to assess a situation and come up with thoughtful solutions. I write this calmly on a day when I don’t have many competing interests at play. I just want to think about some things. Some are challenges on the horizon, some are things I should have been planning for (but haven’t), some are just mountains to look at …
What stands in your path?
Are those real troubles and insurmountable obstacles, or just part of the scenery?
Hi Mark, I had to write to you about this Musing. Many years ago, as I was nervously about to go on stage to address a large audience, a colleague pointed out that my skirt was wrinkled. I know this colleague cared about me and did not intend anything negative, but of course, it damaged my confidence at the worst possible time. Afterwards, I explained to him that his comment was not helpful, but rather hurtful, because at that point I couldn’t do anything about it. He was very apologetic, and appreciated that I told him. We are still friends today, and I’m certain he never did anything like that again to anyone. It certainly highlighted for me the fact that sometimes people do or say things without thinking, not to be hurtful. So now, when similar things happen, I try not to assume the worst (that someone is doing it to be mean). J In your case, I assume the person who pointed out your errors did so privately. Perhaps they did it with the intention to help you in the future. I just read a book in which a small town newspaper publisher met each week with a reader who pointed out all his errors. Initially it irked him, but ultimately it made him try harder, and he was proud when the number of errors she found declined dramatically. Maybe your typo-finder read the same book. ;-), Cheers, DAB, Edmonton, AB
Congratulations on your new word....I love it ! Love the entire piece, AG, Cancun, Mexico
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