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Catch The Rain

Our granddaughters, Khloe and Kinley, visit pretty regularly. Khloe is about 4 years older than her little sister, and they are usually inseparable. One visit, when Khloe about 6, was just like any other visit; playing, running, giggling and noisy. Something happened, and Khloe, the oldest, found herself upset and crying.  This time her crying became sobbing.  We’ve all been there once or twice in our life … the tears open up an emotional spring which wants to continue to flow.  We really didn’t know what was wrong and frankly that little 6-year-old didn’t either; she just knew she couldn’t stop the crying.  I looked at the rain coming down outside and had an idea … “Come on Khloe, let’s go catch some rain”.  I picked her up, we walked right out the front door and started catching raindrops.  Within a minute we were soaking wet and her beautiful smile returned.  Now I wasn’t going to let a “Poppy Moment” slip away so I shared with my little granddaughter how to find creative ways to help manage her emotions. 

Just a few years later, Kinley was sobbing in the kitchen and everyone was trying to console her. I came from the office area and walked into the kitchen.  Khloe looked at her little sister then right at me and blurted, “Hey Poppy, Kinley needs to catch the rain!”  Wow … I was so impressed with my little girl!  She remembered that lesson from a few years back and when her sister was in that same state of mind, she knew exactly what to do.  So, I picked up Kinley and we walked out to the back deck. I watched her not only catch rain with her hand, but she added the “open mouth and catch rain on the tongue technique”.  If you know Kinley, she always has a charming addition for any task!

I know this is a business forum and what does comforting little ones have to do with business.  In my leadership role, I may find myself supporting my team in ways I never thought necessary.  But this isn’t about consoling bad attitudes within the team.  This is about me; when I’m struggling with my own attitude.

In my career, I’ve found myself in extremely frustrating situations.  Situations where my next choice would be critical.  Situations where there are technical, personal, personnel and political elements all of which need to be considered and navigated. Situations where there is heated debate, everyone in the room having valid points.  Situations where getting anyone to back down is looking impossible. Situations where blowing up all over those around me is not the answer. Situations where I have to remove myself from the “arena”, go outside to breathe, clear my head, and above all else, remembered that there is no one in that room trying to fail.  

When I find myself professionally or personally, battling my own “tude”, I do myself and those around me a favor … I take myself outside and “Catch the Rain”.

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