I believe you’ve heard people say: “Let’s sleep on the problems”. Or maybe you heard: “I wish the problems will go away by themselves”. Or maybe you say it to others every now and then?
Unfortunately problems can’t help themselves, they need to be solved. As Scott Peck stated in his book “The Road Less Traveled” (1978; p. 30):
“Problems do not go away. They must be worked through, or else they remain, forever a barrier to the growth and development of the spirit“.
A lot of people choose not to deal with their problems, because they afraid to feel the pain of dealing with the situations. They wish that one day their problems will go away and stop chasing them. But, the problems are trickier than they think. The similar problems will keep on chasing them – with different people involve, different setting and time.
I heard many motivational speakers or preachers said that through problems, our character is shaped. Through our willingness to deal with the problems, we will learn to see that life is meaningful. “Problems are the cutting edge that distinguishes between success and failure” (Peck, 1978; p. 16). Problems are the media for us to show courage and wisdom, and at the end let us grow mentally and spiritually.
We all know that some of us choose to be silent when they have problems. The most useful excuse is: silence is golden. I am not saying that the excuse is lame, but it is very contextual. From my perspective, silence is golden when we deal with certain people who always want to win the argument, no matter how silly is their logic. But silence is not always golden, especially when we are experiencing problems that include other people. We owe them explanations.
Silence can screams louder than spoken words, because through silence, the person let problems hanging between him/her and other parties. The wrong understanding of being silence can distort the reality of the problems.
In order to avoid distortion of our reality, we need to have a map. It’s like a usual map everywhere else, but the point was to help us view the reality – where we are, and how to get to a place that we want to go. Therefore, we need a true and accurate map, which contains of information and appreciation of reality. But, we were not born with this map, we have to make them and keep on updating the information, or else our map will be outdated, false and inaccurate. By being quiet and not doing anything, we deliberately excuse ourselves from revising our map. Revision needs a lot of effort too, in which we have to add new information, change our direction if we went the wrong way, and admitting that our map is outdated. Therefore revisions “is painful, sometimes excruciatingly painful” (Peck, 1978; p. 45) and most people avoid this process.
To close this post, I will quote from Elridge Cleaver:
“If you are not part of the solution, then you are part of the problem“.
So which one are you?