Do It Yourself – NOW

Telling an experienced person, that they need to learn to do something for themselves is almost insulting. Like how to suck eggs…

It sounds like talking to a child in a way. Do it yourself – we say to our teenagers when we know they’re capable but still hoping we will do it for them. The truth is they aren’t being as lazy as we think, they just like us mothering them – well maybe it’s a bit of both.

But that’s beside the point.

When you are perfectly CAPABLE, but not doing something, the phrase applies.

In every partnership I know between two people, we take on certain responsibilities. They things we are better at, the things that cater to our strengths, that we can bring to the relationship. So, what’s wrong with that? Nothing.

Until it is.

When life is humming along and you’re doing things, and they’re doing things cool. It might be tricky, hard to organise calendars and tiring when you have kids and are trying to hold down careers, but DOABLE.

All good.

But when life throws you a curve ball BOOM you need to do it all. What you think? He did that! Or she did that! What the hell do I do? And you kick your intelligent self for not taking the time to learn that thig. For letting this happen. You’re smart! What the???

Your mind reels. You go back to all those times you said, ‘I must really watch you do that’ or ‘we must go over those bills together one day’, but you didn’t. Life got in the way.

It was much nicer when you had a free moment to go for a coffee. That’s ok. Those coffee moments were precious.

But now you must figure it out.

This is a simple way to break it down, but here I go. There is a good chance in those relationships where opposites attract, your partner did the things you found hard and visa versa. They may have used the opposite side of the brain from you. If you are right and creative, they might be left and analytical. This works really well. And while it’s working, that side we don’t use as much, can go a bit mushy. We stop using it. And you know the saying use it or lose it.

I have been told before I have a strange imbalance – I am very creative but super analytical as well – great. However, when push comes to shove, a spreadsheet for me is nothing but a matrix. Forget the calculations. Too hard.

I’m not really as left as I think. I let others do that.

So when push really did come to shove for me, and I was forced to activate that other side, and it gave me a smashing headache. It was hard work. Not comfortable at all.

I had to force myself to do it. Sure, it’s possible to hire people, but somewhere along the way it dawned on me that if I tried, I might just get it. Determination, grit, stubbornness. Who knows? Who cares?

What I realised, and like to share, is this. When you do stretch your lazy less active side, you grow exponentially. The satisfaction is enormous! It almost makes the creative stuff seem mundane now, like play. I still love it, but it’s so easy I just laugh.

I think it’s possible through adversity, that the challenges we are forced to confront, and overcome, can make us happier than ever. It must be like an athlete going further or faster than they ever did. We never really know what we are capable of until faced with a difficult situation.

I believe adversity is healthy. That activating both hemispheres is incredible. That doing it yourself, or rather doing that thing you didn’t know you could do, is brilliant.

That despite it being harder than hard, it makes us better.

Never again will I look at a problem as I used to; somehow now with both sides actively working at it I have this much calmer, clearer way or solving a problem.

So can you.

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