What’s in Your Way?
I went to the theater last week to see The Peanuts Movie with my husband and my mother-in-law.
My husband, Allan, has been a huge Charlie Brown fan ever since he was a kid. He could always relate to Charlie, who maintains a feeling of hopefulness even when the world seems to be against him. Meanwhile, I was more like Lucy, the opinionated girl who is always ready to offer up advice.
The first time I saw the preview for The Peanuts Movie, I knew right away that we had to see it.
Once we got in the theater, the three of us settled down in the middle of the second to last row. I got comfortable, leaning my head on Allan’s shoulder to my left.
About mid-way through the movie, without even realizing it, I shifted to the middle of my seat. Shortly after, someone behind me tapped me on the shoulder.
I turned around. In the darkness of the theater, there stood a small girl, around the age of seven.
“Can you move your hair, please?” she piped up.
I said “sure,” then pressed my head back to Allan’s side.
For a seven-year-old, that was a pretty courageous move. I was impressed! I was in her way, and she told me directly what she wanted.
When I was seven, there was no way that I would have done that! I would have rather missed the movie, or spent the rest of it propped up on my knees than to speak up to a stranger.
Her actions made me wonder how many times in our lives we just grin and bear it.
We don’t want to create a fuss and bother our busy waiter when our order is messed up at a restaurant, so we eat it anyway.
We avoid difficult situations with our team members because we don’t want to deal with the potential conflict.
We shiver through a meeting in an overly air-conditioned room because we feel awkward asking to change the temperature.
When someone submits an error-ridden article or proposal to us, instead of pointing out their mistakes, we fix them ourselves.
We make all kinds of moves to avoid stepping on other people’s toes, and we end up damaging our own experiences. We can absolutely get what we want. We just need to speak up and ask for it.
So… whose hair is in YOUR way?