Having different perspectives in conversations is nothing new but it is something we often forget. A little while ago, I was chatting at a BBQ when wives around me were complaining about how them and their husbands could never remember a conversation the same way. “It is as if we were having 2 very separate conversations” they said.
As I reflected on this, I remembered the story about a tortoise, an elephant, and a hippo that goes like this…
The different perspectives of the elephant, tortoise and hippo
One day, this little tortoise crossed paths with an elephant, who trumpeted, “Get out of my way, you little weakling – I might step on you!” The tortoise, without a hint of fear, stood its ground, and the elephant, well, it stepped on the tortoise but couldn’t squish it.
The tortoise, not one to back down, retorted, “Mr. Elephant, don’t get too carried away. I’m as strong as you are!” Of course, the elephant just laughed. So the tortoise invited the elephant to come to its hill the next morning.
The next day, bright and early, the tortoise dashed down the hill to the river, where it met the hippopotamus, who was on his way back to the water after a night of feasting.
“Mr. Hippo, you up for a tug-of-war? I’m pretty sure I’m as strong as you!” said the tortoise.
The hippo couldn’t help but chuckle at the thought but agreed to give it a shot. The tortoise produced a long rope and told the hippo to hang onto one end until it shouted, “Hey!”
Then the tortoise scampered halfway back up the hill to a spot where it couldn’t be seen and hollered, “HEY!” The elephant and the hippo tugged and tugged, but neither could make the other budge – they were equally matched.
They both had to admit the tortoise was just as strong as they were.
But here’s the kicker: we know the tortoise isn’t a powerhouse. It wasn’t really pulling on the other end of the rope; it just made each of them think it was.
Each animal had a very different perspective of what was going on.
The moral here is that sometimes being independent allows you to see things in a different light. It allows you to see the different perspectives in conversations. But when you are in the midst of it, you genuinely believe that the tortoise is on the other end.
So, before you get frustrated remember that just like there were 2 people in that conversation, there are also 2 different perspectives.
And the best way to delve into this is to become curious. Ask questions. Be genuine in your curiosity.
This is something that ReSet can help you with. Becoming curious and open to different perspectives. Are you ready?