Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Day 26: The Pebble In Your Shoe

You can't find a solution until you've accurately identified the problem copy
Sometimes the smallest problems in our lives are the greatest annoyances. I get cold easily, needing a blanket in all seasons. Every morning before I get out of bed, my feet find my slippers, but until recently, my heels would still be cold. I’d clomp around with an underlying annoyance about my chilly feet. Finally, one day I saw a blogger talking about moccasins and it struck me – I could buy moccasins and my ENTIRE foot would be WARM.

It sounds so painfully obvious. But I’d never made the connection before.

I hadn’t been able to find a solution because I hadn’t accurately identified the problem. I’d thought the problem was that my feet were cold, but that was a symptom of the problem. The problem was that my footwear was inadequate. Once I was able to identify the problem, it was easy to spot a solution.

We don’t wear our shoes in the house. We take them off in the garage. For the longest time, a shoe rack sat right by the door but instead of using it, everyone piled up their shoes just outside the door. I walked past those shoe piles, kicking them or detouring around them, multiple times a day. I muttered silently (and not so silently) “We are so unorganized/messy/irresponsible, etc…”

Finally, I realized the shoe rack was difficult to access. The problem wasn’t poor organization, the problem was that no one could get to the rack! I switched out the low rack for a higher shelf, and lo and behold, shoes are put away on a much more consistent basis.

Solutions only emerge once you’ve accurately identified a pinpoint problem. 

Or put another way, you need to identify WHY you’re aggravated (my feet were cold), so that you can determine WHAT you’re specifically frustrated about (my slippers were inadequate) to be able to recognize HOW to solve the problem. (moccasins, Eureka!).

What are some underlying aggravations in your life? How can you fix them today?

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