I often wonder how many of us bring on a great deal of our own problems … at home and at work. Simply taking a moment to pause before we respond to today’s massive information overload may well save us some grief.
For instance, I was recently sitting at my gate at the airport awaiting another typically late flight. Between news stories on the monitor, I witnessed a commercial I honestly thought was a practical joke. The announcer was promoting a natural enzyme tablet that helps prevent gas before it starts! PAUSE. Reread!
The articulate voice-over explained the purpose of this extraordinary product. In a very convincing voice, he announced that this product was designed “for prevention of heartburn and acid indigestion. You simply swallow one tablet with water one hour BEFORE eating a meal you expect to cause symptoms!”
How would you ever know if the product worked or you simply weren’t destined to experience heartburn and acid indigestion today?
I immediately looked around at the 50 or 60 other passengers watching the monitors, and no one blinked an eye!
This is NOT a joke. This product is manufactured by one of the largest drug companies on Earth! It’s advertised in magazines, on TV and even billboards!
It’s sold in major grocery and drugs chains from coast to coast! It’s expensive! People actually pay money for this product!
Upon returning home, I did some quick web research and discovered that there are actually several other products that make this same claim, and they’re all readily available to consumers everywhere.
Therefore, I decided to create a product of my own. I’m going to call it “Outlaw In-Laws.” The following explanation will appear on the box: “For prevention of unexpected visits by annoying in-laws whose presence will definitely lead to the need for further medication, swallow two tablets with water approximately three hours prior to unexpected visit.” PAUSE! Re-read!
Experiences like this cause one to think about the number of negative situations we could avoid everyday in the workplace if we would simply take a moment to pause and rethink the facts before we speak or act.
I’ve got to close now as I just received an important e-mail from a disease-ridden, dying widow in Nigeria who is requesting my assistance in transferring her billion-dollar fortune to my personal checking account!