Facing the contractor’s dilemma

contractor

Have you heard the story about the contractor? He builds, makes additions to, and repairs homes and he’s amazing at it. In fact, he’s the best in his area. But, he has a problem, his own house has leaky faucets, a few wall cracks, and his patio needs refinishing. Still, he pushes forward, convinced other people’s homes were more important than his. Suddenly, his¬†faucets hit a constant stream. His wall crack affects the ceiling and his patio starts to lose boards. Still, he pushes forward. His pipe breaks. His ceiling starts flaking. Part of his patio gives way when someone steps on it. He has to stop helping others to help himself.

As people who serve others, in whatever capacity, as employees, business owners, husbands, wives, mothers, we are susceptible to the contractor’s dilemma. Yesterday, I wrote about trying to give from an empty vessel. The contractor’s dilemma is similar. Only, in this dilemma, it is others who can serve you. There is no shame in asking for help. There’s a reason we weren’t born superheroes. We may perform small acts of heroism throughout the day, but we can’t do it all.

Daily Exercise: Where are the cracks in your walls? What can be patched? Who can help you patch it? Do you need more help around the office or home? Do you need to set clear boundaries? How can you head that dilemma off at the pass or stop ignoring yourself or your business?

Our contractor has a happy ending. By hiring a plumber, he was able to fix his faucets. That plumber, in turn, sent him more business by referral. By setting boundaries with his clients, he was able to free up a weekend to patch the cracks in his wall and ceiling. With the extra business from the plumber’s referrals, he got someone to come look at his foundation to make sure it was OK. He engaged his family, after he fixed the broken boards, to pick a new stain and paint the patio as a family activity.

What is your dilemma today? Comment below.

 

Are you sabotaging your relationships?

Yesterday, I watched a very compelling video about cell phone use and how it can make a partner feel alienated, alone, and unimportant. If you missed it, watch it right here.

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There are dozens, if not hundreds, of little things we do to test our relationships. Those relationships can be business, romantic, sexual, or just plain friendly. These tests are designed to set up boundaries, test boundaries, and protect ourselves. Sometimes, though, the tests go too far. This results in missed opportunities as you push away potentially great relationships, business partners, friends, and lovers. If you have people cycling in and out of your life at a frequent pace, you might be doing this to yourself. It can result in job loss, heart break, and unfulfilled goals and dreams. If you haven’t caught the jist yet, it’s not a good thing.

TODAY’S EXERCISE

Ask yourself:

1) Do I distrust immediately or do I wait for trust to be broken?

2) Do I ask myself, where is this going to fail?

3) Do you start trying to fix problems before problems occur?

4) Do you test business partners by coming up too close to or missing deadlines, unintentionally not delivering or breaking promises, rescheduling meetings on a short time frame?

5) Do you have a set of standards in mind that, if not strictly upheld, that person is out of your circle?

6) Are you as hard on others as you are on yourself?

7) Do you challenge others often and end up in heated discussions?

8) Does life/work feel like a game of “Survivor” where either you compete or you are voted off the island?

9) Do you isolate yourself from individuals or groups by directing your attention to your cell phone, the television, or something that takes you away from the present moment?

10) Do you voice your concerns or do you “stuff” them and build resentment?

Answer these questions openly and honestly with yourself. You don’t have to tell anyone your answers. However, if you answered YES to three or more of these questions, you may be sabotaging your relationships.¬† Reframing your mindset is key to keeping an open mind. If you need assistance in doing this, feel free to contact us.