Two-part Christmas Tree Problems

Cecile Andreasimprovement, learning, process, workLeave a Comment

Last week, I was visiting a coffee shop where three staff members were erecting a Christmas tree. All went well in the beginning. The tree was standing solidly in its’ stand. The bottom half of the branches of the tree unfolded into a beautiful shape. They added the top part of the tree next. Without unfolding the branches before putting up the top half, the branches were suddenly impossibly high to unfold. Several ladders and stepping stools were brought out, all to no avail. The branches of the tree seemed impossibly high to unfold.

It seems so easy to see something as an unquestionable whole. I recently had to move a piece of Ikea furniture. I spent a lot of time figuring out how to move it, without spending any time considering that it had arrived in two flat packs in the back of my car, and that those pieces could be deconstructed!

What are you seeing as a whole that might be solved in its' parts? Click To Tweet

I have been thinking about how this might be true in other parts of my life. Where have I erected “two-part Christmas tree” problems just like this? I know that there are some situations in my life which I have just assumed are whole issues that can’t be solved. Which parts am I not considering that might help me reach the outcome I want?

The other issue is that I had the immediate reaction that I should go over and give advice to the struggling crew. I believed that I had a really simple and obvious solution to the problem. But then I noticed the crew. They were laughing and talking and shaking their heads at the problem, and generally having a great time. They plugged that imperfectly unfolded tree into a nearby socket, and it lit up into a sparkling, Christmassy decoration – exactly what they had set out to do.

During this festive season, they showed me the most important lesson of all. That it is not the perfection of things that make the moments, it is people that make the perfection in moments.

It is not the perfection of things that make moments, it is people that make the perfection in moments. Click To Tweet

As you move through this festive season, I invite you to look for your own “two-part Christmas tree” problems. How might you turn them into exactly what you wanted?

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