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Why Didn't The Dog Move?

25/08/2015 8:21 AM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST
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Yesterday, I stood for what seemed like a long time outside a popular restaurant waiting to be "called". And then tried all means to get noticed so that they could not miss me -- what a nice feeling it was to be "called" at last. We actually spent less time eating inside the restaurant than waiting outside. And yet, there was the satisfaction -- why?

That's because the restaurant was serving the kind of food that I really, really wanted to eat at that point in time. If we really want something, don't we make all sorts of efforts to get it? Think of a time when you wanted something and you went after it and felt your full power... Did you think of something?

A friend of mine walked into my office one day and lamented that he couldn't go after what he wanted in his life because his hands were tied. And yet when he had to get his daughter into a particular school that he really wanted, he went all out, tried different methods, thought innovatively to make sure his girl did get admission in that school. I don't remember him giving up by saying "my hands are tied". He was relentless. So, what do you think is different?

"We can continue to whimper in our comfort zones and keep feeling the pain, or we can choose to move away from the pain and explore."

I am reminded of a story here which I tell quite often.

A postman who delivers mail to a farmer's house every day sees a dog lying on the porch, whimpering. One day he asks the farmer why the dog is whimpering. The farmer says, "That's always been his favourite spot and now there is a nail sticking out, which hurts him. That's why he whimpers". The postman asks the next logical question "Why doesn't the dog move?" The farmer replies, "The pain isn't enough for him for him to move."

The moral of the story is simple. We can continue to whimper in our comfort zones and keep feeling the pain, or we can choose to move away from the pain and explore.

If you really, really want to, you will think innovatively, you will employ different methods to move away from your comfort zone and find a way. Just like you will find a way to eat in the restaurant you want; just like you will find a way get your child into the school you want; just like you will find a way to get a selfie with the celebrity you like and suddenly meet; just like you will find a way to get tickets for the match or concert you want to watch; just like you will find a way to get your loved one who is sick into the hospital on time; just like...

You might say, "But these are small things, how can I change my life on a whim?" Perhaps that's exactly what the dog is thinking sitting in his comfort spot with the nail sticking into him -- why move and change my entire life?

By Ruma Biswas, Certified Life & Leadership Coach.

As an entrepreneur and an executive coach with two ventures (Progress-U and 6point14), I work with senior leadership, top notch sales professionals and aspiring (and inspiring) women. I enjoy the regular exchange of ideas -- do connect with me through LinkedIn with your thoughts as well.

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