In ancient times, a King had a boulder placed on a roadway. Then he hid himself and watched to see if anyone would remove the huge rock. Some of the king’s wealthiest merchants and courtiers came by and simply walked around it. Many loudly blamed the King for not keeping the roads clear, but none did anything about getting the stone out of the way.
Then a peasant came along carrying a load of vegetables. Upon approaching the boulder, the peasant laid down his burden and tried to move the stone to the side of the road. After much pushing and straining, he finally succeeded. After the peasant picked up his load of vegetables, he noticed a purse lying in the road where the boulder had been. The purse contained many gold coins and a note from the King indicating that the gold was for the person who removed the boulder from the roadway.
The peasant learned what many of us never understand – “Every obstacle presents an opportunity to improve our condition.”
(This comes from a South African male – working with multiple audiences including women across many industries for 17 years (Who many years ago trained SA Armed Forces in Buddy Aid – how to use everyday materials to render first aid when you do not have specialised equipment MacGyver style, who has facilitated hundreds of Health & Safety & Crisis Management workshops)
People often feel helpless and fearful in some difficult situations. The reason – Lack of Knowledge. Some become arrogant in order to hide their lack of knowledge.
The antidote to fear is knowledge. Knowledge of your strengths and weaknesses and ignorance. Knowledge of what to do in difficult situations.
Example – Scared of being hijacked by kidnappers. Attend courses facilitated by your local Police or Defence Agency. They often do this as Community Outreaches – for free.
Example – Danger of a loved one dying. Empower yourself with knowledge. Attend First Aid Training. You never know when you may need to save a life.
The point I am making is that often we are afraid because we have not made the effort to analyse a situation and equip ourselves with knowledge and skills. I mean do you know how to use a fire extinguisher, or do you even have one at home?
So here is a tip. Before you do anything, free yourself from the shackles holding you back. Attend some creativity workshops – These will enable you to think outside of the box, and is in fact some of the most important learning experiences you can ever attend.
As George Bernard Shaw said: “Some people said why, but I said why not”
I learnt a lot on Good Friday.
Got invited to visit friends on a farm where they were bass fishing. I ended up doing nothing. No mobile phone, no e-mails, no books.
And, you know what I learnt. Yep, you have got it. The Value of Doing Nothing.
Right now I feel liberated. Tired from the sun and fresh air. But my battery seems charged. Not enough but a start.
Now I know there is a story that says that to do nothing in an organization you have to be very near to the top. Or the other one that says that the only reason men go fishing is because their wives will not let them sit at home and do nothing. But it honestly was nice.
The only problem in leaving there is that I felt just like Tony Soprano in the hit TV series – The Sopranos when I had to leave. This time I left and the ducks remained behind.