I’ve been reading and thinking a lot lately, and the principle keeps coming to mind that “if you pick up one end of the stick you pick up the other end.” We’ve all had experiences where we did something to get one result, then were astonished at getting another (and very predictable) other consequence.
One great example I read, reminded me of the kind of rash things I sometimes do. A woman filed a complaint with police about something relatively minor, like loud neighbors. She got really nasty about it and made a big to-do out of it. Which prompted the neighbors to file a complaint against her.
The “other end of the stick” for her was that when the neighbors (predictably) filed a harassment complaint against her, the police turned up an old warrant on her (that she knew about), and she was arrested. I never heard the end of the story, but it seemed so logical to me. She was so caught up in her wanting of one thing (her neighbors to stop whatever it was they were doing) that she never thought through, what will they do, and what will happen when they do?
We see it all the time. The celebrity who does something stupid, like making an offensive video, and then loses something important to them.
And I do it all the time. Maybe not on that scale, but I do. I think we all do, and I’m trying very hard to be more conscious, when I do something, to think about the other end of it. I think a lot of the growing pains my business is experiencing are just normal growing pains, but I think some of them are the result of not looking at both ends of the stick.
On the other hand, recently I reported that a client accused me of plagiarism because someone else was claiming credit for the work I did, and I responded very calmly and reasonably. That client actually came back, was reasonable and repentant, and asked me to do another project. I haven’t decided if I’m going to do it, but I might. If I don’t, it will only be because I don’t think it’s a good use of my time.
Just some thoughts from my reading.
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