Thursday, December 22, 2011

Identify the Problem

When you’re annoyed, angered, or frustrated, ask yourself, “What exactly is the problem here?” Take a few minutes to ponder that one little, nagging issue that, if solved or eliminated, would make your life better.

When I have problems with people or technology or just stuff in general, I usually assume it is them not me. It can't be something I am doing or saying that is causing an issue. It has to be you. It can't be me. Just do what you're supposed to and everything will be fine. Just do what I'm asking you to do and everything will be fine. I don't ask for much: Respond to the email I sent you three hours ago. Pull off the road so I can drive the speed limit. Connect to the internet when I open you. Hire me. Give me the paperwork I need. Let me finish what I was saying. Stop riding the arse of my car. Go away. Boil the water I've had on your burner for five minutes already. Start when I turn my key in your ignition.

See, I don't ask for much. I just want things to go my way. I just want you to do what I need. But then again, maybe I am the problem. Maybe I'm too stuck in my ways. Maybe I have too many rules and regulations. Maybe I'm a stickler when it comes to life. Should I ease off a bit? Should I try to compromise? Should I stop thinking technology is a logical being who is out to get me? Probably.

I have a hard time letting go. It's in my DNA. My mom's side of the family comes from Western Pennsylvania. The people from that part of the state are mostly Dutch and German. They are also very stuck in their ways, stubborn and bullheaded. Don't get in my way of doing what I've set my mind to, or else there are going to be problems. My dad's side of the family is very schedule and time oriented. They hurry hurry hurry. They need things to be a certain way. We are eating at six-thirty, so if you're not here by then, you may not get any dinner. It's no wonder I am such a mess.

I know I need to open up more and let go of things, but I just can't. I'm not even sure I know how. I think part (well, most) of me believes that if things don't go the way I have mapped them out in my mind, that bad things will happen. If my car acts up or if someone is going too slow or if there is snow on the road, I won't get to work by seven-thirty. And if I don't get to work by seven-thirty I may not get the parking spot I always get and then my entire day will go down-hill from there. How do I stop thinking like this? How do I fly by the seat of my pants? How do I just let go?

If you have a solution, I am open to it, but I have a feeling it won't work. Remember, I come from a long line of stubborn, schedule-detailed, bullheaded, time-oriented people who are very stuck in their way. How do you work against something that is in your blood? I realize this is not just a little nagging issue, but it would make my life a lot easier if this was somehow resolved.

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