All I am saying is “give peas a chance”
I heard Dave humming the tune this morning https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RkZC7sqImaM (not sure what side of the 60s he woke up on, but whatever), and I burst out laughing. I could only think about giving “peas” a chance.
Back up to 40 something years ago (is age really that important, after all?) when Kristen and I were little girls and she couldn’t eat all her mashed potatoes and I didn’t like the peas on my plate. We made a daredevil swap at the dinner table whilst parents weren’t looking---I ate her potatoes and she ate my peas. On another occasion, I may have been known to “spill” the peas into my napkin and go to the bathroom and flush them down the toilet. (Don’t try this at home). Why? I hated peas. So I wrote them off. No peas, ever. Nada. Zilch. None. Fast forward to a couple of years ago when I tried edamame the first time (I know, I know, they aren’t peas but soybeans, but trust me, if you are not a pea lover, you are VERY resistant to anything that looks like a pea pod twin). Love edamame!!! I also tried black-eyed peas, and with a small amount (your “small” may slightly differ from my “small” but whatever, right?) of bacon, I can throw down some black-eyed peas.
No, this is not the new food channel blog. My point is this: some things about which I may have been resistant in the past are now things I will try. Behaviors, for instance. A dear friend of mine was having some communication issues with a group of fellow teachers. I told her some advice that had been given to me about twelve years ago by a very smart and successful businessman: When you and a co-worker or colleague disagree, a quick way to end the friction and tension is simply to say “You may be right about that.” Simple words, right? But it tamps down the emotion that might be exuding from both parties. He said that the key to saying these words is to say them without any hint of sarcasm. Simply say it and then change the topic. Great idea, I would add, when engaging in conversations about politics and religion. What is the alternative? To continue to beat our heads against the proverbial wall, saying the same thing over and over, usually louder each time (as if volume is going to increase the chances that you are going to change someone’s stubborn mind about said topic), with no resolution. “You may be right” takes the negative impact that seems to drive the conversation.
This is key when we are working with groups of people in schools and other businesses as well. What businesses say more and more is that they can teach the skills of how to operate the technology or work the machines at their place of business just fine. The real challenge is getting people to work together with the path of least resistance. In schools, I like to call this “how we play in the sandbox together”. Whether at a grade level meeting or a content area department meeting, there always seems to be that one person who poo-poos every idea brought up. What if Negative Nellie says “That will never work” and one or two other folks simply say, “You might be right about that, but let’s try it anyway this time,” and then the real kicker is to move on. Don’t give the negativity any more credence.
My friend, who was wanting some help in dealing with her grade level, listened to my suggestion, and at first said, “I don’t know if I can do that.” Understood. I totally get how hard it is to give peas a chance. Trying anything new is scary and sometimes leaves a bad taste in our mouths (I used to tell my sweet Mother “Le Seur peas taste like they are from the sewer”---aren’t you jealous you didn’t have a child like me? J But guess what----two days later, my friend came back to me and said, “I’ve been practicing saying ‘You might be right’ and I am going to try it this week when Opposite Oscar tries to rain on our parade and then I’m going to move the meeting along.
What about you? What is a new behavior (or food, if I stirred up that (no pun intended) for you) that you might take on this week or this month? I suggest thinking of something that is not working for you, currently, ask some advice from “the winners” (people you truly trust to have your best interest at heart) and try one new behavior that you think you can make your own.
Just for today, I would challenge you to try something new, even if it’s something you tried long ago and you didn’t like. Your taste may have changed, you may have grown up, or you might just find that a new result is out there.
In the meantime, I am going to give peas and peace a chance.