Getting Off Your Duff

Recently a friend told about a horrifying accident that happened right in front of her eyes. As she traveled on the highway, she saw a speeding car T-Bone into another car, which was sent into another car. That she was able to slam on her brakes and avoid the catastrophe was a miracle.

What did she do? Granted, she is a medical professional, but she did not hesitate to pull to the side of the road and jump out of her car to see what she could do. The scene was not only frightening, but she was the only one there for what seemed like an eternity. One person was fatally wounded. Four others were seriously injured and in need of hospitalization. She did what she could and stayed with the accident until all persons were safely in ambulances and under the care of paramedics. She has stayed in touch with the injured and even plans to attend the funeral of the person who was deceased. And yes, she is a fine, caring Christian woman, wife and mother!

What she did was use the INITIATIVE she developed between ages 3 and 6. She saw a problem before her, and jumped out of her car to attend to the injured. Would you have done such a thing even if you aren’t a medical professional? Sometimes folks in bad situations just need the presence of a caring individual who will encourage, comfort and stay with them.

But we aren’t talking about auto accidents in this article. We are talking about INITIATIVE. Other words in a thesaurus include: Creativity, enterprise and resourcefulness. And yes, my friend used all of those three! The dictionary defines it as: “The ability to act and make decisions without the help or advice of other people.”

So let’s go back to being a four or five year old. You see a bright-colored ball on the ground in your play yard. Do you just stand there and look at it, or do you walk or run to that ball to investigate and pick it up to enjoy playing with it? You’re in a park and you see a swing set. Do you just wish you could get on that swing and enjoy the breeze in your hair, or do you take the initiative to go to the swing, get on it, and pump yourself up, so as to go swinging high, enjoying the thrill of it? Or you see a situation. Your friend has fallen off her tricycle, and is crying. Do you go to her, help her up and comfort her? Do you take the next step to look at her boo-boo, and take her to her Mom or yours for first aid? If you take action, that’s INITIATIVE.

You are in High School. You have been given a homework assignment. Do you keep putting it off, procrastinating finishing the challenge, or do you get the job done so you can hand in the homework at the appointed time?

Now you are an adult. There’s a pile of dirty dishes in your sink, a king-size bed that needs to be made, dinner to be prepared for tonight’s meal and you really need a shower. Do you choose the most logical one and do it, or do you do none of the projects and just spend the day on Facebook or watching TV?

Plainly stated, INITIATIVE is the ability to see a job or a situation in front of you and get off your duff, and get it done. As it happens, I have several jobs ahead of me today. I need to complete making the PJ’s I started for my Great-Grandson’s birthday, I need to finish making the bed that I was interrupted from in the process, I need to finish this article, I need to work in the study, and I need to stuff those mushrooms for tonight’s dinner. Got a lot on my plate today, huh? Oh yes, there’s that trip to the Post Office to mail a package too.

So I had better get to the projects (think I’ll finish the bed-making first, since I have just about finished this article). Just remember, TRUST comes first, then AUTONOMY, and now INITIATIVE. In order to get to the next step in Emotional development, I have to have completed these three. OK, now to my list . . .

OH wait . . . Valentine’s Day comes soon. Better get a few cards and get them mailed, and something special for my Beloved. Will do later today.

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