When The Solution Is Worse Than The Problem

When The Solution Is Worse Than The Problem

Not to be crude, but we had some clogged plumbing over the weekend.

We tried everything to get it working again–plunger, snake, and even some septic tank treatment.

Nothing seemed to work, so at one point, my wife looked up on the Internet what to do, and it said to unwind a hanger and try that.

Well this turned out to be a huge mistake and I must’ve gotten too close to the chemical fumes–my eyes were burning.

I ended up in the ER with my eyes being flushed for close to 2 hours.

Afterwards, being very supportive and sitting with me in the hospital with my eyeballs hooked to suction cups and saline solution, my wife says to me, “This is a case when the solution (i.e. the results of our trying to fix the plumbing ourselves) is worse then the problem (the clog).”

I thought to myself boy was she right, and while it is good to be self-sufficient and try to fix and improve things ourselves, it is also good to know when to leave it to the experts.

How many times do we foolishly try to do something where “we are out of our league,” and actually can end up doing more harm then good.

In this case, I could have seriously damaged my eyes–permanently–and am so grateful to G-d that everything turned out okay.

Knowing our limits and accurately assessing risks can help us to know when to proceed ourselves and when to ask for some expert assistance.

It’s good do things for yourself and to try your best, but also value and know when to leverage other people’s strengths.

With my eyes irritated and burning and being flushed out for what seemed like an eternity, I had some serious time to ponder what can happen when things go wrong.

Years ago, I learned to “Hope (and pray) for the best, but prepare for the worst,” and I want to continue to work and improve on both these. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

I Want To Be Possible

I_want_to_be_possible

On Rosh Hashanah, The Jewish New Year, which is a time of personal reflection, the Rabbi told us a story (which I made into the attached cartoon) about the person, who when asked what he wanted to be–when he grew up–said “I want to be possible!” That’s the serious part.

 

And when asked “why possible? The person replies humorously because his mother always told him how impossible he is. 🙂

 

The short parable struck me as pretty profound and worth sharing.

 

Because everyday, each of us has to wake up and look ourselves in the mirror, and ask–are we happy with ourselves…who we are…what we have become?  And is it really what we want to be, when we, proverbially, grow up?

 

In the movie Reckless, when they ask the teen growing up in the working class town what he wants out of life–he replies short and to point, “More!”

 

What more do we want out of our lives?  More money, more honor, more things…at the end, that’s all sort of besides the point–isn’t it?

 

What is important is making more possibilities in life–for ourselves and for others by creating a better world.

 

In other words, it’s not about the material (although we all need to take basic care for ourselves and our loved ones–that’s just being responsible), but fundamentally, it’s about the opportunity to make the impossible, possible!

 

For each of us, the challenges are unique and all too often (G-d protect us!), life’s trials and tribulations test us to our very core–so overcoming impossibilities has a distinct meaning for all of us.

 

But as a strategist, a futurist, and an enterprise architect, I know deep down that the art of the possible is in looking forward and not backwards, and working tirelessly to sacrifice and serve.

 

I pray for the new year that G-d gives us the strength and the wisdom to overcome our personal and societal weaknesses, limitations, and selfish inclinations to help and “repair the world”–creating new opportunities for peace, health, and prosperity for all!

 

(Cartoon created in BitStrips)