Monday, July 21, 2014

Bumper Sticker Wisdom

I was parking my car on Main Street the other night, and spotted this on the bumper ahead of me. I just had to stop and take a picture.


Hours later, I was still mulling over the wise words of Jimi Hendrix:

I kept thinking about how many times in my own life I've let power be my priority over love. It is so, so easy to let wanting to be right, or wanting to be in control become my main focus - even when I'm trying to do good things with my heart in the right place.

A recent incident comes to mind. I got snippy with Big Brother when we were trying (unsuccessfully) to install a new cable modem. I was tired after a busy day, cranky from spending time I didn't plan on spending stuck in a customer service phone queue, and more than a little annoyed at Big Brother telling me (constantly) how I don't know what I'm doing (about anything, ever).

Immediately after snapping at him, I felt bad for doing it. He was tired, too, and just as frustrated as I was. I didn't need to be right, I didn't need to vent at him, and I didn't need to call him on the carpet just for feeling all the same things I was feeling. I didn't need to do any of that, but I did it anyway.

How might that interaction have been different if I had taken a deep breath, smiled at him, and asked him  nicely to give me some space while I was on the phone? It would have been a better outcome for both of us.

Being snappy and grouchy (especially when I'm tired or hungry) is a bad habit. When Big Brother does the same thing, I know he does it because he learned it from me.

Here's a thought - maybe if I work harder at changing how I respond to things that annoy me when I'm tired/hungry/grouchy, Big Brother might learn to do the same?

Thank you, Mr. Hendrix, for the reminder that the only true power we have in life is love.

Read more about loving thy neighbor and my take on whether or not good fences really make good neighbors.