90-to-40: Like bricks in a sidewalk, these are the days of our lives.

Day 51:

The universal mockingbird has been at it again with yet another life lesson. For the past few months, I've had multiple situations arise - each very different and unique in nature - which end up teaching me the exact same lesson.

I call it a mockingbird because it's like having a loud, annoying caged bird in the corner of your room squawking the same line over and over again. At first, you throw a sheet over it and hope it goes to sleep. Then you move it in the back bedroom and turn off the lights. Eventually, you try selling the bird to a rare animal circus disguised as some sort of endangered penguin to no avail. You're stuck with it and it won't shut up! (The problem is, I didn't listen to what it was saying.)

I know the old phrase about "life having a way of repeating the message until you get it." I thought I was pretty good at catching on. Clearly, that's not the case.

What is the lesson? That 'everyone is good at something', or conversely, 'no one is good at everything.' 

Simple, huh? I get that I'm bad at some things, but good at others. And, so is everyone else. It makes perfect sense. What I missed was HOW that was manifesting in my life. Today, I saw multiple examples of this which brought me, ultimately, to an "ah-ha" moment.  (Or, to refer back to the earlier analogy... the bird finally completed a sentence). 

WHAT we're good at is worthless without simultaneously recognizing what other people are good at - and learning to meld the two parts together to form a stronger whole. It is the pairing of our strengths which make for remarkable partnerships and advancements in life. When complimentary strengths collide, the outcome is 10 times stronger than each individual strength.

The "ah-ha" moment: 
These are the actual bricks
Tonight, I was attempting to create a cobblestone path at my house. The dang brick pattern we chose did not work out, so I had to go random. Nothing throws me more than randomness. My partner, however, has some sort of wonderful "super robot" thing going on in his head. I called him outside and he stared at it for exactly twelve seconds and started shuffling bricks like a deck of cards.

Stunned, I thought, "What the...? Good grief! Why didn't I see that?" 

But...  then he started trying to level the bricks. It turns out his spacial reasoning is lopsided. It took us about 20 bricks to figure out that we were better off when he laid out the pattern and I went behind him to level and set each brick. We doubled our speed. Voila!

Just about then, six months (or more) of these "lessons" passed through my mind. From situations with family, to recent developments at my job... I INSTANTLY understood the nuances of this seemingly obvious truth: 

I don't have to be good at everything. I have to let go of my pride.

In fact, when I am NOT good at something and someone else is... I need to figure out how we can work together. Complimentary skill sets might make for an amazing collaboration - if I can get over my hard-headed ways and climb over my own inflated head!

The moral:
We are ALL just like those seemingly random bricks. Even though we are all different shapes and sizes, there is always a way we will fit together. Separately, we are just a frustrating pile of dead weight. But... when we find a way to work together, we are as strong and solid as concrete.

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