from the Blog

Things Are Not Always What They Seem


7:45 am on a local four lane road. The car ahead of me is going about 10 mph below the posted speed limit – travelling in the right lane with his left turn signal on. I’m stuck. Many of the passing cars noted the turn signal and provide the driver sufficient room to move into the left lane. But after a momentary pause, with the driver of the slower car appearing to be oblivious, the cars barrel along past him.

Finally there is an opening and I am able to pull to the left and pass. The driver appears to be very much in his thoughts and seemingly unaware of his blinking turn signal.

Pulling back into the right lane ahead I note in my rear view mirror that the emergency flashers were on (not just a single turn signal). I catch a glimpse – it appears that the right front tire is one of those emergency spares.

This seemingly oblivious driver was perhaps the only one I have ever seen to heed the maximum speed limit for an emergency spare. He was following the rules.

Consider Their Story

Things are not always what they seem.

Every day we encounter frustrations with bosses, co-workers, store clerks, or the young man at the fast food counter. We make decisions about the context of the circumstance using a frame of reference based on our past experience.

  • We are in a hurry and frustrated with the ‘inconsiderately’ slow driver. Why hasn’t he noticed the ‘left-over’ turn signal – there’s a fx&#@# light on the dash for goodness sake. Yet there is a purpose for the slower speed.
  • We are frustrated with the co-worker who steps out of an important meeting to take a phone call – from a family member who has just been in a bad accident.
  • We bitch about the store clerk who has difficulty giving us a change when we give them $10.37 for a $5.37 ticket – what we don’t know is that they don’t compute visually and it is just as frustrating for them.
  • We don’t understand a young teen who can’t read the time on an analog watch or clock – because they have only seen digital (we are not there yet, but getting closer everyday).
  • We are frustrated by the young man who thinks that milk comes from a freezer at Wal-Mart – who has never seen a cow or a farm.
  • We blow a gasket at that seemingly ‘healthy’ person who parks in the handicap space – who is stepping in to pick up a friend in a wheelchair.

Things are not always what they seem.

Perhaps I have got you thinking now – what are some of your examples – funny or serious? You might enjoy this list of 6 things that annoy us – explained by science.

“Every single person on the planet has a story. Don’t judge people before you truly know them. The truth might surprise you.”           ~ Pravinee Hurbungs

This week . . . . have a heightened awareness about how you perceive everyday situations that occur around you. Things are not always what they seem.

  • Consider the other person’s position. Is there something driving them to a particular behavior?
  • Consider your own behavior. Do I sometimes do stupid stuff when I am driving?
  • Consider educating yourself before you judge a situation. Albert Einstein said, “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”
  • Be at peace with who you are. You will be less likely to make judgments about others.

. . . . go have an Awesome Week!

Tom Trabue