Thursday, May 26, 2011

Simple Sure-Fire Bug Killer

An amusing story I heard years ago involves someone creating an ad for a $5 bug exterminator kit with an absolute 100% guarantee.

Turns out that those who fell for this “too good to be true” claim were sent two wooden blocks with these instructions: "Place bug on block A, then press block B firmly on block A."

End of bug.

I’ve been thinking lately about a similarly simple approach to problems that may be bugging our relationships, annoyances that get in the way of friends, couples or family members enjoying the kind of good times they would like. Rather than complaining, or wasting time and energy blaming the other person, what if we could just get together and respectfully identify and name the specific problem, then place it on the table where we work out ways of extinguishing whatever “bug” is causing our distress.

In other words, to learn to attack problem behaviors rather than attacking each other. And to start with each of us first examining our own bad behavior habits and ridding ourselves of whatever we are doing to add to the stress. Thus we make sure we keep focusing on the problems, not the marriage, not the spouse, not the persons, per se.

I believe persons are always precious in spite of their behaviors,. And problems are, well, just normal, everyday and quite fixable things, not necessarily crises, unless we make them so by turning mole hills into mountains. But thank God even mountains can be moved, and there really are many more solutions than there are problems.

So identify bug, place on block A. Then press block B firmly on block A. End of bug.

Until the next one shows up.
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