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Andrew Reid Consultancy's blog: The Growth Blog

The Growth Blog focuses on lessons in leadership that inspire growth in all forms.

Wake-up call, it's not all about you!

I know it sucks to hear, but we both know it's true. You might be insulted by the title of this post, or you might be thinking "this isn't news, why are you sending me this?"

The fact of the matter is, when we're this direct about it, it's obvious and makes sense. I'm sure we're in agreeance but now I want you to think, how easy is this to accept when we think our world is crashing around us?

A few weeks ago I was doing some work on my computer (I work from home) and my browser started acting up. I closed the window and reopened it. No change.

Slightly annoyed I realize my music stopped streaming... my email said trying to connect... the list goes on. I grab my phone and pull up the app my cable company offers for troubleshooting.

You know where this is going. We've all played this game before.

Did you plug it in? Is the light on? Are you alive? Does water make things wet? Okay the last two questions are real, but that's how stupid I feel those first wave of troubleshooting questions are.

After about 30 minutes of rebooting, refreshing, and restarting I get a text from my internet provider, "an outage has been reported, we're working to resolve it, sorry for the inconvenience."

I look out the window, not a cloud in the sky and the wind is barely a gentle breeze. Okay, so there isn't rain or gusts knocking stuff down. Why is my damn internet not working?

I was livid. I had spent hours working on a project and I was literally ten minutes from being done. Now I had to wait until god only knows when to finish it.

It was about lunchtime, and I decided to run out to grab something. I hopped in my car and started the engine. I started thinking more and more about how much I hated not having internet. I know it sounds petty but I am confident you've all been here before. My life revolves around constant internet access. Alexa needs internet, Apple TV needs internet, my job requires internet. The list kept building and my anger kept growing.

I pull up and wait for the community gates to open. Was it just me or were they going slower than usual just because they already knew I was pissed?

They open (FINALLY!) and I make a left turn. Instantly, I see a multi-car pile up. They had collided and crashed into some type of massive power grid.

Suddenly, I am brought back to reality. I feel like a moron, I'm embarrassed at how angry I was and I am concerned for the people involved in the accident.

Luckily, no one was injured. The cars were beat up pretty badly and the power grid was clearly pummeled but everyone was okay.

It was a rude, but necessary wake-up call. How could I have allowed myself to get so angry over something like a poor internet connection? One that lasted a total of less than 2 hours.

Now when things start to get under my skin I try to remember this moment and ask myself, "am I the one without internet in this situation or am I the one in the car?" If I'm the one without internet, I take a deep breath and move on.