How Heavy Is Your Glass?

How Heavy Is Your Glass?


Two factors that dramatically impact our ability to "achieve outcomes" are stress and overwhelm.

Look at the picture above and guess how heavy the glass of water is?

Would it surprise you to know that the absolute weight doesn’t matter? It depends on how long I hold it for. If I hold it for a minute it’s not a problem. Hold it for an hour and my arm will start to ache. Hold it for a day and my arm will feel numb and paralysed.

In each case, the weight of the glass doesn’t change, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes. So, what’s the lesson to be learned?

The stress, worries and overwhelm we bear in life are like the glass of water. Think about them for a while and nothing happens. Think about them for a bit longer and they begin to hurt. And if you think about them long enough, you’ll feel paralysed – incapable of doing anything. So, we need to practice putting these "burdens" down.

And the reason we do this is twofold… in my experience, many of the issues we wrestle with are not real, they’re imagine!. And you’d be amazed how many people spend a lot of their life worrying about and dealing with issues that haven’t happened and are never likely to happen. You probably know people like that. You may even do it yourself.


However, assuming an issue is real, the other filter is whether it's controllable or uncontrollable.

There are some things we can’t change. Live with them and move on. Instead, consider the impact they'll have and do something about that.

Here's an example from business owners I work with – the markets they operate in will change, sometimes quite dramatically, and, in most cases, they can’t do anything about it. Wasting energy bemoaning the fact serves no value. Instead, look at how you can modify your business to lessen the impact or, even better, take advantage of the change. This requires a shift in mindset away from always being the victim!

However, if the problem is "real" and "significant", can I suggest productivity is usually enhanced by dealing with it.

There’s the story of the cow and the buffalo… cows are good at anticipating a storm, so they move away from it, only for the storm to catch up to them. Consequently, they spend more time caught in the "eye" of the storm.

On the other hand, buffaloes wait for the storm to appear over the horizon and then, with all their energy, charge it. And, by doing so, they pass through, spending the least amount of time in the storm.

Problems you keep moving away from will always catch up with you in the end!

So, how heavy is your glass?



David Floyd

First On The Beach

You get what you focus on… so focus on what you want.


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