It’s Knot That Bad

When I was a kid, I liked my sneaker laces tied tight.  Then I would double knot them, so that they wouldn’t come untied.  Sometimes, I couldn’t untie them, so I would wrestle my sneakers off and throw them in a corner.  But, the next morning, the old and worn laces were a big, messy, frayed knot.  Ugh!

In my garage, I have this large bin, where every cable cord, extension cord, speaker wire, computer wire, and even those three-colored component connection wires I’ve accumulated over decades sits in one large, twisted clump.  Gotta have the gold-tipped Monster cables!  I don’t know why I still have them.  Every now and then, I’ll need something from that bin and when I dig in, I come out with an incredibly discouraging frayed knot.

And Christmas lights; am I right?  If it were up to me, I’d buy new sets every year.  Much easier.

So, what do we do with these frustrating and seemingly insurmountable knots that give us such a hard time?  Well … we get our hands in there and begin.  What?!  Where?!  How?!

We don’t know, but we do it.  A tug here, a loosening there and we see something that guides us to the next move.  A split second observation and we continue.  Nope, I put the wrong end back through another hoop and made it worse.  Okay, we back it out and go another way and so on.  After a few minutes, everything is as it should be. 

Now we can tie our shoes, decorate the house, and hook up that old VCR.  What are you watching?!

Life can be full of frayed knots.  The logistics of getting married, a new job, starting your own business, moving to another state or another country, or going away to college.  The car doesn’t start, the milk is bad, or the AC is on the fritz.  A tangled knot of issues, money, time, resources, new faces, risk, sacrifice, and doing things we’re not so confident about.

“Is this the right move for me right now?”  “Am I really cut out for this?”  “What should I do?”

Approach it like a frayed knot.  Begin.  Move, observe, loosen, pull, go back a bit, now go forward, re-evaluate, continue.  Pretty soon, things look pretty good and that knot is untangled.

Imagine facing a real knot, like the shoelaces.  Would it make sense to stare at it, analyze it, formulate a detailed plan, get discouraged, and decide to skip school that day, because we can’t put our sneakers on?

No.  I’m afraid not.

Photo by Huynh Tan Hau on Unsplash

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