Working the Right Question

The Dawns were having a heated argument.  By the Dawns I mean the intellectual Dawn, the emotional Dawn, the inner child Dawn, the practical Dawn, the demanding Dawn, the fun-loving Dawn, just to name a few – all gathered in the tribal circle like a disassembled Russian nested doll, trying to work through something that was upsetting me.

The intellectual Dawn was very impatient with emotional and demanding Dawns because they kept asking “Why am I so angry about this?”  The intellectual Dawn had, weeks ago, gotten together with the practical Dawn and put together a reasonable “to do” list, that also had a contingency plan.  Great progress was being made.  But there were still some Dawns that were angry, progress on the list notwithstanding.  None of the Dawns were sleeping well.

This is when it is handy to have a good life coach.

Sometimes we stay stuck because we wrestle with the wrong question.  This is true in both personal and professional life. We go around and around a mountain, when perhaps it makes sense to quit walking in circles and map a course leaving the mountain behind.

After discussing the issue for a while, my coach said, “Why don’t you quit asking ‘Why am I so angry?’ and ask ‘How can I find peace with this?’ See if that works.”

It was like someone pulled the plug on the sputtering, zapping toaster burning the bread.

All of the Dawns quietly restacked.  Mind you, I didn’t come up with the answer.  But I enjoyed the calm that comes with knowing you are on a better path.

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