Getting the door open
My youngest daughter taught me something yesterday. Again.
She was grappling with the car door handle from the outside.
Having tried and failed to pull the door open several times, she looked to me to do it for her.
Never one to miss a chance to say ‘you can do it’, I didn’t open the car but told her she was almost there.
She fumed at me.
Determined to prove indeed she could NOT do it, her little hand gripped that handle. She used her whole body to yank theatrically at it, to no effect. She threw her arms to her sides and scowled at me.
I raised my eyebrow. And opened the door for her.
I didn’t throw my whole body about to do it, I just clicked it open.
Instead of climbing into the car, she seemed astounded.
She closed the door again – so she could open it herself.
Instead of ‘trying’ with a certainty she could NOT do it, she pulled the handle gently but firmly like I had done, and it opened.
She used less effort, but her expectation had totally changed, and so she did it.
Her expectation changed because she saw that it could be done.
She became willing to try properly.
Her intention changed.
So, don’t abandon your newbies with an enthusiastic smile and a ‘you can do it’.
And don’t roll your eyes at how incompetent they are.
Don’t swoop in with your cape on and do it all for them.
But DO show them how to do it. Then let them try and fail, until they get it.
Have you ever watched someone have a breakthrough moment? What were you doing differently? Let me know in the comments below.
Another blog on this topic: Learning New Stuff Can Suck.
See you on the road,