Posted on Thursday, April 5, 2012
in Emotional, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Values
I heard a story I’ll never forget.
My three year old son had a lot of problems with potty training; and I was on him constantly. One day we stopped at Taco Bell for a quick lunch between errands. It was very busy, with a full dining room.
While enjoying my taco I smelled something funny, so of course I checked my seven month old daughter. And she was clean. Then I realized that Matt had not asked to go potty in a while, so I asked, and he said, “No.”
I kept thinking, “Oh Lord, that child has had an accident and I don’t have any clothes with me.”
Then I said, “Matt, are you sure you did not have an accident?” “No,” he replied.
I just knew that he must have had, because the smell was getting worse.
So I asked one more time, “Matt, did you have an accident?”
This time he jumped up, yanked down his pants, bent over and spread his cheeks and yelled “SEE MOM, IT’S JUST FARTS!”
While 100 people nearly choked to death on their tacos, he calmly pulled up his pants and sat down to eat his food as if nothing had happened.
102 People, 3 Reactions
That mom could laugh about it later, but at the time she felt humiliated. She was the only one in the room who did even thought they all shared the same moment at the same time.
Many times people with similar life experiences react the same.
– Watch a scary movie, we feel scared
– Listen to a love song, we feel sentimental
– Hear a baby laugh, we smile
In that Taco Bell one hundred people nearly laughed themselves to death, one boy felt vindicated, and one mom felt humiliated.
They may have felt different feelings in that Taco Bell.
On the other hand, we may feel the same feelings in different situations.
- A softball player may fear failure when she’s gone hitless two games in a row.
– An honor student may fear failure when he sees his scholarship essay has typos.
– A cashier may fear failure when her boss complains about her “short drawer.”
– A good driver may fear failure after his first accident.
Different situations, same feelings.
You’re Not Alone
When we fear failure we wander similar paths:
• A lack of trust in people breeds insecurities
• Insecurities isolate people in a fear of rejection
• Fear of rejection ruins relationships building more fear
• Fear fixates us on what coulda, woulda, shoulda happen
• When coulda, woulda, shoulda didn’t happen we feel angry
• We feel anger because we don’t have control
• Lacking control we may choose bad choices
• Bad choices bring bad consequences
• Bad consequences, usually unseen, destroys dreams
• Dashed dreams fills us with guilt
• Guilt can drive us to choose more responsibly
• False guilt grips us in shame
• Shame convinces “I am what I am. I cannot change. It’s hopeless.”
Time for a change. More tomorrow.