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When Things Go Wrong

The bricklayer ... when things went wrong


ou've no doubt heard about the bricklayer who applied for time off work for the following reason: "When I got to the building, I found that the hurricane had knocked off some bricks around the top so I climbed onto the roof and rigged up a beam with a pulley and hoisted a couple of barrels full of bricks to the top of the building.

"Then I went to the bottom, and holding onto the line, I began releasing it. Unfortunately, the barrel of bricks was much heavier than I was and before I knew what was happening, the barrel started coming down, jerking me up. I decided to hang on since I was too far off the ground by then to jump.

"About halfway up I met the barrel of bricks coming down fast. I received a hard blow on my shoulder. I then continued to the top, banging my head against the beam and getting my fingers pinched and jammed in the pulley.

"When the barrel hit the ground hard, it burst its bottom allowing the bricks to spill out. I was now heavier than the barrel, so I started down again at high speed. Halfway down I met the barrel coming up–fast–and received severe injuries to my chin. When I hit the ground, I landed on the pile of spilled bricks, getting several painful cuts and bruises.

"At this point I must have lost my presence of mind because I let go of my grip on the line. The barrel came down fast, giving me another blow on my head, putting me in the hospital. I respectfully request sick leave."

Everybody has a bad day now and then, and times when things go wrong. But when troubles come, it's not what happens to us, but how we react, that counts. Troubles destroy some people. Others they make. The difference lies in our attitude, being realistic, acceptance, and what we do about resolving our problems.

Attitude is more
important than aptitude.

Attitude. If we respond to our difficulties positively, determined with God's help to overcome, we will. If we react negatively with a defeated attitude, we will be beaten, no matter how brilliant we are.

As Zig Ziglar says in his book, See You at the Top, "Attitude is much more important than aptitude.... Despite the overwhelming evidence which supports the importance of the right mental attitude, our entire educational system from kindergarten through graduate school virtually ignores this vital factor in our life. Ninety percent of our education is directed at acquiring facts with only 10 percent of our education aimed at our feelings—or attitudes.

"These figures are truly incredible when we realize that our thinking brain is only 10 percent as large as our feeling brain. A study by Harvard University revealed that 85 percent of the reasons for success, accomplishments, promotions, etc. were because of our attitudes and only 15 percent because of our technical expertise."

Ziglar also pointed out that William James, the father of American psychology, stated that the most important discovery of our time is that we can alter our lives by altering our attitudes.

Being realistic is also critical in determining the outcome to one's problems.

Continued on Page Two

All articles on this website are written by
Richard (Dick) Innes unless otherwise stated.