My Practitioning Fundamentals
I admit that I may have said or done it on this very blog: saying someone should just say, do or think something. The word just is so innocent and everyday. Yet I try to use it as a red flag for myself. Because when I find myself thinking that an individual should just do X it means that I am not taking their entire experience seriously, that in a way I feel that it’s easy to change if only this person would just start doing this or stop doing that. But usually it is not because otherwise people wouldn’t struggle and need help. What might me a just for me and you might be a huge challenge for someone else who is facing barriers. We give no information on how to overcome barriers when we just ask people to do things. If anything it’s the opposite because we fail to empathize enough to see the reality of their situation.
Adults love straight-forward solutions. We love them so much that we would rather spend years and years finding “the one thing that changes our life” instead of changing ourselves. That’s why tools are so much more popular than processes because if only we had the right tools, everything else would fall into place.
When is the last time you heard someone say ‘I really used to struggle with my self-esteem. Then I bought one book and the problem was solved forever.’
Until I heard the mayor of Copenhagen talk about bicycles I used to beat myself up a lot. Like lots of people I loved plans and formulating concrete goals. I could spend hours and hours planning things out, trying to get everything right in advance. Every single year when the time for new year’s resolutions rolled around I would again enthusiastically create step-by-step plans to achieve stuff like cleaning my room, exercising regularly and all the other usual suspects. Plans suggest that change is easy. Just break it down and you can’t fail.