Sometimes the best action to take is nothing.

by Brad Isaac on October 14, 2009

Last night I was trying to start my dishwasher. It was late. I didn’t want to wash dishes by hand. But for some reason, I couldn’t get the machine to start.

I went to check the breaker, flipped it back and forth a few times to make sure it was on. Tried the machine again. No luck.

Then I considered a half-hearted search for the manual. But knew I probably wouldn’t find it.

I thought, it’s probably not gonna be much fun to pay that bill, but on the other hand it’s pretty late at night. I knew I shouldn’t be worrying too much about it, there was nothing I can do. So I went into the other room and started reading a book, thus do nothing.

As I read, my thoughts kept drifting back to the dishwasher. I knew the problem was electrical.

I continued reading.

Suddenly it occurred to me that sometimes there is a light switch on a neighboring wall – possibly in another room that controls the electricity to dishwashers. I started flipping light switches and eventually found the culprit. The dishwasher fired right up – thereby saving me $100 or so in calling a repair service.

Doing nothing takes patience. It takes getting away from the problem as much as possible. But sometimes nothing is the best action we can take.

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Reboot October 16, 2009 at 1:55 pm

A very apt tale regarding the old practicve of counting to ten or whatever before taking action for the sake of action.

on the other hand … You may want to spend that $100 anyway, since most electrical codes call for a dishwasher to be on it’s own circuit and the light switch may not be spec’ed to work with the motor/heater current involved.

In other words you have identified a fire hazard and should NOT do nothing.

November 2, 2009 at 11:42 pm

Patience and choice two concepts that can lead to intense procrastination. Good to see you got the mix just right.
.-= Mick Morris´s last blog ..How would you talk to a disabled child – with Passion? =-.

November 4, 2009 at 3:06 am

It’s sometimes funny how the unconscious mind is with some things a lot better than our conscious mind. And often we are trying so hard to figure something out and can’t solve the problem. If we are going back to that problem a day later or so, it’s done within 10 minutes and you wonder why you didn’t see the solution before!
.-= Claudia´s last blog ..Why you got fat =-.

November 10, 2009 at 5:15 pm

We are sometimes too rushed to ask for help, rather than having patience to think up a solution. Leaving things alone and returning to them is a great idea and it is definitely hard to do. And lets not forget its the best feeling when we finally find the solution!
.-= Mark Arnold´s last blog ..Who is your Yoda? =-.

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