At the end of the summer last year, my wife’s air conditioning in her car broke. It was the end of summer and beginning of fall and here in Ohio the weather was being fickle as it is known to be and so we were going back and forth between hot summer like days and cool, crisp fall days. This meant the “need” to fix the air conditioning did not seem as urgent had it happened on July 6. But beyond the fickle weather, there was something that was even more key to me not getting the air fixed immediately. It was not my car. It was my wife’s problem. Her car, her temperature, he sweat, her problem. But then something happened – I had to drive that car on a hot day. Within a week, the air was fixed. Here are two key lessons I was reminded of through the stupid air conditioning. Action is driven by true empathy. Empathy does not happen until their pain becomes our pain.
Let’s be honest, we do not act, because we do not care enough. We do not care enough because it is affecting them and not us. When you become part of the us, everything changes. What would happen if we took steps into people’s mess so that their mess becomes our mess.