Monthly Archives: May 2016

Monday Motivator: Have Supplies

Last week, I was sick. All week. What started as a scratchy throat on Sunday turned into chills, fatigue, and a full-out sore throat by Monday. I slept most of every day, then went downstairs to watch reruns of Gilmore Girls and nap some more.

While I was not desperately ill, I have to admit that the thought of washing my face seemed like a monumental task. And the idea of putting on clothes and going out to get supplies seemed the equivalent of climbing Mount Everest.

Luckily, I didn’t have to. Having had my share of viruses over the years, I learned that it’s wise always to have some basic things in my house: tissues, cough drops, sinus medicine, soup, and soda (My sore throat always craves soda more than hot tea. Go figure!)

Sure, in case of the zombie apocalypse, I’m not going to have enough to make it through the first wave of the invasion. But for the pesky summer cold,  I was well supplied.

It occurred to me that this is a pretty good rule for most areas of life. Although I will never have the desire, I am more likely to clean my house if I have sponges, bleach, and cleansers at hand. There is a much better chance I’ll send the thank-you note if I have stamps. And I’ll send cards if I have a stack of them in a drawer.

So this week, I’m back among the healthy and going to the store. Because last week, I used up all my throat lozenges.

 

Monday Motivator: Fair Is Not Always Equal

In her book, Stop Being Lonely,  Kira Asatryan tells the story of two people who both want the same lemon. Their argument becomes so heated they call in a negotiator, who cuts the lemon in two and gives a half to each person.

The first person squeezes the lemon juice into a glass of water and throws away the peel. The second person throws away the fruit so he can use the peel to make a lemon cake.

There are many lessons to this story:

  1. Don’t assume that equal is always fair or productive.
  2. It is wise to determine what people want from a negotiation, argument, or discussion before making a decision.
  3. Saying exactly what we need can often prevent things from escalating.

And if nothing else, always buy more than one lemon!

Monday Motivator: Jessie Is Not Jennifer

(I changed the names here because my friend hates all sorts of social media with a passion.)

At a dinner party Saturday night, the hostess was asked where her younger daughter will be going to high school next year. With all the growth in that county, it turns out she’ll attend a different school than her older sister did.

Guests sympathized. “Oh, you won’t know the teachers. You won’t know which ones are the best.”

The hostess replied, “Jessie is not Jennifer. She might need something totally different.”

I make it a mission to remember wisdom when I hear it, and not even the best chocolate cake in the world (I had two slices) could derail me.

I realized that, no matter how much we say that we don’t categorize people or that we treat everyone as an individual, that’s not always true. In fact, with the information coming at us all the time, it’s not always possible. We group ideas to make processing all the data a little easier:

“If Mr. Kennedy is a good math teacher for Jennifer, he will be a good math teacher for Jessie.”

If Phyllis could do all of this without getting stressed, Carter should be able to as well.”

“If my first wife enjoyed camping, then all my wives should enjoy camping.”

“If I can come to work when I have a migraine, you should be able to!”

You get the picture. Sometimes it’s automatic and we make the judgment without thinking. Sure, as humans, we have a great deal in common. But let’s slow down and remember that Jessie is not Jennifer. Or you. Or me.