Friday Food For Thought #17


Once upon a time, in a galaxy not too far away, lived a couple of carefree fellows: Get By Guy and his brother-in-law Good Enough Guy. Both these guys excel at work, sports and any number of other activities that they feel are important in their lives. Unfortunately, Get By Guy and Good Enough Guy often forget to show the same commitment to some of the more menial day to day tasks. These chores tend to be completed just well enough to get by – good enough by the guys’ standards.
Mrs. Get By and Mrs. Good Enough struggle with this dilemma, especially since they are both slightly OCD and anxious. Routines and standards are very important to these women. Get By and Good Enough wives have tried nagging to no avail. They even considered electric shock treatment, but apparently using cattle prods or canine bark collars on husbands is frowned upon by the SPCA. What are these wives to do?
If this was a genuine fairy tale, I could write that Get By Guy and Good Enough Guy cherished their wives so deeply that they underwent major behaviour transformations. That these guys were no longer satisfied with the paradigm of just doing good enough to get by, and instead they willingly and regularly met their spouses’ higher expectations. Everyone lived happily ever after.
In real life – human nature leans toward Getting By and Good Enough. Not everyone and not always – but the majority of us are guilty of it at some point, because it is simpler or quicker. As parents (Get By Guy and Good Enough Guy included), we emphatically tell our children to work hard and strive to always do their best. What if the children decide to use get by and good enough principles for major decisions in life? We hope that they aspire to a career that is both challenging and rewarding for them, rather than a job that merely provides a pay cheque – just enough for them to get by every month. We wish that our children will choose a spouse who respects them and enhances their life, not settling for someone that they consider simply good enough.
So I offer this advice to myself and my sister-in-law Mrs. Get By and Mrs. Good Enough: Pick Your Battles. Continue to encourage children to ALWAYS do their best, this will give them a solid basis to make virtuous life choices. They will learn about get by and good enough in their own time. Realizing that dirty clothes (including socks) go in the hamper, unloading the dishwasher and wiping down the shower might never be activities that these husbands regularly perform, but when they do happen – celebrate. Remember Rome was not built in a day, and trying to convert Get By and Good Enough is a far more daunting task. If all else fails –we could go on strike and spend the day at the spa.



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