Socks on Jewelry Boxes
If you were to come into my bedroom sometime (I don’t know why you would do this, but bear with me here…) you might see this:
As you can see, this is a hospital sock placed nice and flat on the top of my wife’s jewelry box.
When I see this image it makes perfect sense to me. I know exactly why there is a sock on my wife’s jewelry box. You are probably racking your brain trying to figure out why on earth I would have a good reason for doing this. In fact, right now you are probably thinking that it is a construed example simply for the purpose of writing a blog post.
Let me enlighten you.
We turn a fan on every night when we sleep. Having a fan on generates some monotonous white noise which we find helps us sleep. In addition, since our bedroom is upstairs, it is often a bit warmer up there than is comfortable for sleeping. I, particularly, prefer sleeping in a cooler room with more blankets on. Pointing a fan directly at us addresses both the heat issue and the white noise issue.
In order to get the fan to actually blow on us, it has to sit up high enough to make a difference. So we tend to place it on top of this jewelry box which puts the fan at the optimum height. The only problem with this is that the fan we use vibrates a lot. Frequently, when we were first doing this, we’d be startled awake in the middle of the night to the sound of the fan falling on the floor as it vibrated itself off the jewelry box.
To address this problem, we put a hospital sock on the jewelry box. The fan sits on the sock. The rubberized tread on the sock keeps the fan from vibrating itself off the box.
One of the major sources of discontent at work or discord between neighbors or friends or family members happens when people do things that we just cannot comprehend. We can’t understand why someone would do this or that. That’s not uncommon, but the problem comes when we make the mental leap to: ”Therefore, that person must be an idiot, because I am a sane person, and I can’t make any sense of why they did that.”
Instead of making that leap, think of the sock on the jewelry box.
In almost every case, people make rational, well-formed decisions based on their experience and their understanding of reality at the time. That doesn’t mean everyone always makes intelligent or correct decisions, necessarily. (I know, I’ve made lots of boneheaded decisions.) What it means is, if you see someone doing something and you just can’t figure out why they would do such a dumb thing, what it probably means is that you don’t have all the information they have or see the world the way they see it, and if you did, perhaps you would behave the same.
Next time you see someone doing something that seems silly or boneheaded to you, take a step back. Maybe it is a sock on a jewelry box. If you take some time to think about why a rational, intelligent person would behave that way, or better yet, if you take the time to talk with them and find out about their motivation and perspective, you might come to a better understanding of the situation as a whole, and avoid straining a relationship in the process.