The driver knows how much the ox can carry, and keeps the ox from being overloaded. You know your way and your state of mind. Do not carry too much.
I recently had breakfast with a friend who reported that his commitments and obligations had gotten to be more than he could handle. The load had become so heavy that it was getting him down and affecting his ability to perform as well as his mental state. He, like so many others I know, has a great heart and wants to help everyone. For him it is almost impossible to say no even when he knows he should.
I understood his plight having taken on more than I could handle many times in my past which resulted in my missing deadlines, not performing well and even worse, sometimes failing completely. Neither my friend nor I do anyone any favors when we say yes and promise more than we can deliver. Fortunately I seem to have learned my lesson some time ago and have been pretty good at excess promise avoidance.
The difficulty my friend faced was that many wise folks advised him to select a few things he wanted to do and could do and then drop the rest. As you probably know that is easier said than done, it is hard to tell people you care about that you are going to renege on a commitment. And in my friends case having to face the need to do so created great personal anguish. He told me, “Folks tell you to just walk away but they don’t tell you anything about how to do it without destroying relationships.
His concerns resulted in our discussing the fact that there needs to be an exit strategy tailored to each situation. Our conversation helped us to see how an empathetic timed withdrawal coupled with an offering to assist in identifying other resources could make a positive difference. At least one of his situations that would benefit greatly from his assistance can still be done well if the others are willing to move the deadlines back.
It is never easy to say no, it is especially difficult to reverse a yes, but the price for not doing so is often too great a price to pay. But having to say no does not mean that you need to do it without doing it well. It is so much better to exit gracefully than it is to run for the exit without looking back.
Sometimes it seems your ever-increasing list of things to do can leave you feeling totally undone.
Susan Mitchell and Catherine Christie, I’d Kill for a Cookie
Passengers on a Continental airliner are waiting for the flight to leave; they’re getting a little impatient, but the airport staff has assured them that the pilots will be there soon, and the flight can take off immediately after that. The entrance opens, and two men walk up the aisle, dressed in pilots’ uniforms–both are wearing dark glasses, one is using a seeing-eye dog, and the other is tapping his way up the aisle with a cane.
Nervous laughter spreads through the cabin; but the pilots enter the cockpit, the door closes, and the engines start up. The passengers begin glancing nervously around, searching for some sign that this is just a little practical joke. None is forthcoming. The plane moves faster and faster down the runway, and people at the windows realize that they’re headed straight for the water at the edge of the airport territory. As it begins to look as though the plane will never take off, that it will plow into the water, panicked screams fill the cabin–but at that moment, the plane lifts smoothly into the air.
The passengers relax and laugh a little sheepishly, and soon they have all retreated into their magazines, secure in the knowledge that the plane is in good hands. Up in the cockpit, the copilot turns to the pilot and says, “You know, Darrel, one of these days, they’re going to scream too late, and we’re all gonna die.”
I’m not tense, just terribly A*L*E*R*T!!
HOW TO IDENTIFY WHERE A DRIVER IS FROM
One hand on wheel, one hand on horn: New York
One hand on wheel, one finger out window: Chicago
One hand on wheel, one hand on newspaper, foot solidly on accelerator: Boston
One hand on wheel, one hand cradling cell phone, brick on accelerator: California; with gun in lap: L.A.
Both hands on wheel, eyes shut, both feet on brake, quivering in terror: Ohio, but driving in California.
One hand on latte, one knee on wheel, one hand cradling cell phone, foot on brake, mind on game: Seattle
One hand on wheel, one hand on hunting rifle, alternating between both feet being on the accelerator and both on the brake, throwing a McDonalds bag out the window: Texas city male
One hand on wheel, one hand hanging out the window, keeping speed steadily at 70mph, driving down the center of the road unless coming around a blind curve, in which case they are on the left side of the road: Texas country male
Both hands on steering wheel in a relaxed posture, eyes constantly checking the rear-view mirror to watch for visible emissions from their own or another’s car: Colorado
Two hands gripping wheel, blue hair barely visible above window level, driving 35 on the interstate in the left lane with the left blinker on: Florida.
If I were here more often, I wouldn’t be gone so much.
A wife, one evening, drew her husband’s attention to the couple next door and said, “Do you see that couple? How devoted they are? He kisses her every time they meet. Why don’t you do that?”
“I would love to,” replied the husband, “but I don’t know her well enough.”
Sign at a railroad station:
“Beware! To touch these wires is instant death. Anyone found doing so will be prosecuted.”
HONOR SYSTEM VIRUS
This virus works on the honor system:
Please forward this message to everyone in your address book.
Now delete all the files from your hard disk.
Thank you for your cooperation.
If you have nothing to do, don’t do it here.
Did you know that:
In every episode of Seinfeld there is a Superman somewhere.
Average life span of a major league baseball: 7 pitches.
A duck’s quack doesn’t echo, and no one knows why.
The only 15 letter word that can be spelled without repeating a letter is uncopyrightable.
I know, who cares?
If at first you don’t succeed, redefine success.
The flight home from a recent business trip was pretty empty. So, the pilot made a simple request of the passengers.
“We have a little extra room tonight, folks,” he said over the PA system. “So, if you wouldn’t mind, please take a window seat so that the competition thinks the plane is full.”
Is everything as urgent as your stress would imply?
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
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