Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Tao of Danger-Ryu #2- The Rule of 90/10.

I attended a workshop one day in church. A psycologist/pastor was speaking of the importance of 90/10.
This principle comes from Steven Covey. This principle states "10% of life is made up of what happens to you, 90% is decided by how you react." Strong words indeed. In the most simplest terms, only 10% of what happens in our lives is completely out of our hands. The other 90% is what we do, or don't do about it. There is even a GREAT example of this of a breakfast. Everyday stuff. It is as follows:
"You are eating breakfast with your family. Your daughter knocks over a cup of coffee onto your business shirt. You have no control over what just what happened. What happens when the next will be determined by how you react. You curse. You harshly scold your daughter for knocking the cup over. She breaks down in tears. After scolding her, you turn to your spouse and criticize her for placing the cup too close to the edge of the table. A short verbal battle follows. You storm upstairs and change your shirt Back downstairs, you find your daughter has been too busy crying to finish breakfast and get ready for school. She misses the bus. Your spouse must leave immediately for work. You rush to the car and drive your daughter to school. Because you are late, you drive 40 miles an hour in a 30 mph speed limit. After a 15-minute delay and throwing $60 traffic fine away, you arrive at school. Your daughter runs into the building without saying goodbye. After arriving at the office 20 minutes late, you find you forgot your briefcase. Your day has started terrible. As it continues, it seems to get worse and worse. You look forward to coming home, When you arrive home, you find small wedge in your relationship with your spouse and daughter."
Where is it that everything went wrong? The 10% in this case is the mishap with the coffee. The 90% is the reaction. Every action has a consequence. What would happen if the person had acted differently? Let's see the other example:
"Coffee splashes over you. Your daughter is about to cry. You gently say," It's ok honey, you just need, to be more careful next time". Grabbing a towel you rush upstairs. After grabbing a new shirt and your briefcase, you come back down in time to look through the window and see your child getting on the bus. She turns and waves. You arrive 5 minutes early and cheerfully greet the staff. Your boss comments on how good the day you are having. Notice the difference? Two different scenarios.
Both started the same.
Both ended different.
Why? Because of how you REACTED. You really do not have any control over 10% of what happens. The other 90% was determined by your reaction."
This seems to be true in many aspects of our personal and professional lives. many times, we are stuck with this 10%. It drives us crazy. It becomes an obstacle. That 10% owns us. More times thannot, it's purely mental.
If it rains, do we not run for shelter or take out an umbrella? If we see a car coming out of control towards us, do we not jump out of the way? In our natural instinct of survival, of course we do. Then, why is it, something like a betrayel, a breakup, or the loss of something, be it material or emotional, can overtake and consume our lives?
You cannot stop the rain from falling. You cannot make time speed up or slow down. You cannot stop the sun from setting or rising. You cannot avoid pain forver. But you can learn to deal with it. You can learn to move on. You can learn to make peace with all that is around you.
No, we are not perfect, and many times that 10% will knock us down, spit us in the face, and yell at us to stay down. And even if we fall, we still can get up. Because 90% of the outcome comes from your reaction.
Why let 10% ruin your day, when you can use that 90% to make it better?

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