“Attack the problem…not the people.”
This phrase has been circulating around for a long time. When it makes its way back to me, it usually is because of a situation that has grown to be more than it should be. It usually involves someone’s strong desire for action that someone else hasn’t fulfilled. (Big key to the problem – if it was on the person themselves, they would have done it.) There usually isn’t a dialogue about why the expectation wasn’t fulfilled. There is a lot of speculation about the mind-set and reasoning behind the failure.
I have heard the phrase, “I am personally offended.” a couple of times in my life. Details are not important, but my response one of the times is. The person felt like the team let them down and went on a monologue about it. They ended their summation up with that phrase, “I am personally offended.” I respect them as a leader, they are tremendously talented in so many ways. Yet, when they went on this rant and ended it with that statement, I lost it. I asked them how they can make this personal. If it is leadership issue, lead through it. If it is an attitude issue, work to adjust the attitude. If it is a lack of effort, check your motivations. If it is a communications break down, then work to build a bridge of better communication. Finally, if it is your own personal disappointment, you will need to forgive and move forward.
It might seem like I am a “robo pastor” – unfeeling and caring about people’s emotions. That is far from the truth. I hurt and feel like most people. I just see too many people; talented, gifted and amazing people get stuck in one of these “offense eddys” and they don’t get out of it. They change their routines and leadership to accommodate a spirit of offense and hurt. This isn’t even a Christian issue. You see it in all forms of business and commerce. Yet, when we look beneath the surface, we see people driven by hurts and pain.
What would your world look like if you were to go beneath the surface and deal with the offenses that shape your approach to life’s challenges? What would attacking problems instead of people change your view of your day? I can tell you what it could look like…Freedom!