A Little Understanding

One morning, a small pet store owner was tacking a sign above his door that read “Puppies For Sale.”
 Signs like that have a way of attracting small children, and sure enough, a little boy appeared on his doorstep.

“How much are you going to sell the puppies for?” he asked.

The store owner replied, “Anywhere from $30 to $50.”

The little boy reached in his pocket and pulled out some change. “I have $2.37,” he said. “Can I please look at them?”

The store owner smiled and whistled. Out of the kennel came Lady, who ran down the aisle of his store followed by five teeny, tiny balls of fur.
 One puppy was lagging considerably behind.

Immediately the little boy singled out the lagging, limping puppy and said, “What’s wrong with that little dog?”

The store owner explained that the veterinarian had examined the little puppy and had discovered it didn’t have a hip socket. It would always limp. It would always be lame.

The little boy became excited. “That is the puppy that I want to buy.”

The store owner said, “No, you don’t want to buy that little dog. If you really want him, I’ll just give him to you.”

The little boy got quite upset. He looked straight into the store owner’s eyes, pointing his finger, and said, “I don’t want you to give him to me. That little dog is worth every bit as much as all the other dogs and I’ll pay full price. In fact, I’ll give you $2.37 now, and 50 cents a month until I have him paid for.”

The store owner countered, “You really don’t want to buy this little dog. He is never going to be able to run and jump and play with you like the other puppies.”

To his surprise, the little boy reached down and rolled up his pant leg to reveal a badly twisted, crippled left leg supported by a big metal brace.

He looked up at the store owner and softly replied, “Well, I don’t run so well myself, and the little puppy will need someone who understands!”

Monday Morning Perspective

“No law or ordinance is mightier than understanding.”  -Plato

“To effectively communicate, we must realize that we are all different in the way we perceive the world and use this understanding as a guide to our communication with others.”  -Tony Robbins

One of the most common hurdles I have to overcome as a consultant is to make two seemingly opposite individuals work together in harmony. Teaching people a basis for effective communication is one approach we use frequently. However, it often comes down to each individual’s willingness to make a conceded effort to understand the other that really changes the nature of a relationship.  Without that understanding, layers of misunderstanding lead to a lack of trust. A lack of trust tends to make people question motives and perpetuates a cycle by which an entire relationship (personal or professional) can wither on the vine.

Opening dialogue with someone whom you find yourself trapped in a destructive cycle with is certainly a challenge. Yet, the alternative of saying nothing only ensures that you’ll stay steadfast on the path to continued misunderstanding.

The hardest thing for us to do is to intentionally shatter our perception of any given scenario by gaining a greater understanding of the other person’s point of view. Once we do that, we have the ability to see beyond our own thought processes and personal feelings and to gain a valuable insight into the minds and hearts of others.

If knowledge is power, then understanding is paramount. For without understanding, knowledge is nothing more than an archive of useless facts.

Have a wonderful week!

Warmest Regards,

Crystal Dyer

© Crystal Dyer 2011. All rights reserved.
ISSN: 2158-1355

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