I remember meeting with a couple who felt their marriage was over. I listened, I advised, and I listened and advised some more. All to no avail.
Finally, our counseling session wound down to hopeless silence.
After a pause, I looked at them and said, “So, what you’re saying is that you’re both 100% convinced that there is no hope for your marriage?” They both agreed.
Then I had a moment of inspiration….
I said, “Could you tweak that statement just a bit and say, “I am almost 100% convinced that our marriage is over.”?
Surprised and somewhat reluctantly they both agreed.
Then I said, “Now we’ve got a chance and we’re going to hang on to that almost as if your very lives depended on it.”
That one word—almost—was a game changer. It allowed them to reconsider that maybe they were not 100% right and the other 100% wrong. And from there, through it was a long and tough road, they worked through their difficulties and saved their marriage.
What a lesson for today.
We are so divided and so convinced — 100% – that we are right, and the other side is wrong.
But being willing to add an “almost” gives us a fighting chance instead of just a chance to fight.
That little bit of humility allows us to listen and find common ground…and common ground is the foundation where we can build a better world.
The ONE THING for today: When it comes to people, the only thing we can be 100% sure of is that none of us are 100% right about 100% of everything 100% of the time.