4:42:00 PM

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Just a couple of weeks ago, China recorded the world's longest traffic jam. It started late August and ran into September, lasting 13 days and 100km long!  The news reported that no one got into a road rage which was quite surprising! Considering the fact that here in India, even a five to ten minute traffic jam would cause havoc! This got me thinking about the people who were in their vehicles waiting to reach their destination. They all had a place they were going to but then they had to wait 13 days long before they could get there!

Most people today are all going someplace that too in a hurry. What most people can’t stand are interruptions along the way! No one wants to stop mid way and take time to smell those beautiful, fresh scented flowers on the footpath. They don’t have time to spare and an interruption is the last thing people want!

Today, somehow the world has so many ways of interrupting us! How many times have we been irritated in the midst of our favorite TV programme by all those commercials? How about a power cut right in midst of the World Cup??! Maybe our train’s delayed by 2 or 3 hours and we are stuck at the station! What about those mobile sales people calling to advertise while in the midst of something important?

Think of the last time you were interrupted. Interruptions can be irritating and especially if you are a choleric (a very focused and goal oriented type person), then an interruption is all that is needed to get you upset for the remainder of that day! 

Let me tell you what happened to me recently. A few weeks ago, there was a strike near my clinic and I had to stay at home. I had decided to finish preparing for a message I had to speak at church that following Sunday. So, I got my writing materials ready and everything was set, all I had to do was to get into the writing mode. I had closed the door to my room so that I wouldn't get interrupted in anyway.
My mom had just finished taking the clothes out of the washer and wanted to hang it out to dry. She asked me if she could use the balcony in my room. When it comes to work, I must admit, I am choleric by nature. I got irritated and asked her to put it out in the other balcony as I didn't want to be interrupted. She said fine and she went out. Then my mobile phone rang and over the next one hour, I got calls from different patients to know if the clinic was open on that day. It just struck me how I didn’t want my mom interrupting me and here I was with my work still unfinished because of all the phone calls. I opened the door and let her use the balcony. I have heard of the saying, "Life is what happens when you are making other plans." I must admit I think that's true.

We all know what it’s like to use To-Do lists to navigate our days, on paper or in our minds. We have expectations for accomplishing a number of tasks. This is not a bad thing, until these lists and expectations are based on an iffy assumption – IF nothing or no one gets in the way … IF circumstances don’t intervene…But reality holds that interruptions are a part of life. They will come up and mostly when we least expect it. But can these interruptions be productive? Can we put to good use the time we involve in them? I believe they can. I think it can change based on how we view them. A change in one’s perspective can bring huge results if one learns to handle the interruption correctly!

So how do we handle an interruption that comes our way? What can we do? We will discuss it in the next blog post! Watch out for part two of this post until then,
Good day!

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