Tag Archives: Learning

I Hate Snakes

Irrational Fear

I don’t have a lot of irrational fears, just 3.

  1. Speaking in front of large groups
  2. Flying (or rather crashing)
  3. Snakes

I hate snakes, I really do. Out of the three above listed fears, snakes are the biggest. I don’t know how this fear developed, but it did. And now I cringe at even the thought of them. When I’m flipping through a picture book with one of my kids, and I unexpectedly turn the page to BAM, a picture of a King Cobra staring back at me; I’ll jump. It’s a stupid fear I know, but I’m just being honest.

Now that you know my biggest fear, let me tell you a little story.Snake

Learning to Hate Snakes

Last week I was pulling weeds around my house. My 3 year old daughter was helping me. She’s a lot of fun to pull weeds with. To date I don’t think she’s pulled a single weed, but she sings me songs and tells me funny stories. I love it.

Like I was saying, last week we were pulling weeds. I reached down and grabbed a particularly big handful of thistles and pulled them up. I glanced down at the great big hand full of weeds and I noticed that one of the weeds was wiggling and writhing in my hand.

That’s odd. I didn’t think weeds were supposed to wiggle. You of course see where I’m going with this. Eventually my brain caught up with my eyes and registered what was going on.

I had a pretty decent sized snake in my hand.

I immediately dropped the thing, looked down, and to my utter horror I saw even more snakes crawling around the exact spot I had just been working on.  I let out a yell.   Not a scream or a shriek, just a little yell of surprise. I leaped up and grabbed my daughter, and jumped way, way back from the snakes. My adrenaline was surging.

I then noticed my daughter’s face. She was horrified, but not of the snakes. She was scared of my reaction. I’m pretty sure she saw the snakes, but wasn’t afraid of them in the slightest. She didn’t know she was supposed to be. She hadn’t learned that yet.

It wasn’t until I freaked out that she got scared. Now she knows. I taught her to fear snakes. In a quick 10 second blip of time I forever altered her interactions and views of an entire class of animals. In fact, that’s probably how I learned to fear snakes myself.

That’s scary.

Enough of my irrational fear of snakes, let’s get to the point.

The Point

Last week I shared some quotes about the importance of learning from others. This week I wanted to share how that looks practically.

Like most children, my daughter learned through observation. But, let me broaden that statement a bit. We all learn through observation. Basically, every interaction we have teaches us and every interaction we have teaches others about us. If that is true, than we must be careful of two things:

  1. Who we observe
  2. How we respond

The first is pretty simple; who we observe. Like it or not, you will become like the people you spend the most time with. I happen to like that idea because I have some pretty awesome friends. The people I hang out with I do so in part because I wouldn’t mind being more like them. How about you? Do the people you spend time with raise you up and inspire you? They should.

The second is a bit harder; how we respond.  I wish I could give you some awesome advice on how to respond appropriately in every situation, but I can’t. I haven’t figured this out just yet. I will say this though, people are watching you. What you say and do matters immensely. You have the power to build up or to destroy with what you say and how you respond. Take that for what it is.

…and be careful next time you pull weeds.



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Are you Learning from Others?

Learning happens constantly and continually. Yes, even during summer vacation!

Every person you meet is your teacher and every environment your classroom. Regardless of where your summer plans have taken you, you have the opportunity to learn from those around you. I don’t care if you are flipping burgers at McDonalds this summer, or if you are on a mission trip to Haiti, you are learning from those around you; at least you should be.

Everybody is smarter than you in some area and they are just waiting to share with you everything they know; you just have to ask. People like to talk about themselves and they love to talk about what they love. If you take the time to listen not only will you learn, but you will be seen as caring, considerate, and an all-around great person.

I’m going to leave it at that; short and sweet.  I just wanted to leave you with these three thought provoking quotes about learning from others and to challenge you to intentionally learn from others this summer.

Here they are, enjoy:


“Every person you meet knows something you don’t; learn from them.” – H. Jackson Brown

“If I am walking with two other men, each of them will serve as my teacher. I will pick out the good points of the one and imitate them, and the bad points of the other and correct them in myself.”  – Confucius

“We meet no ordinary people in our lives.” – C.S. Lewis

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