Sunday, September 18, 2011

North Wind and Sun

Susan had a problem with her husband. They had been married for 15 years and had long passed their sweet time. They fought regularly. Susan did not like driving. Whenever she was with her husband, she let him drive. John did not mind driving for his wife. However, he did not like that she kept complaining about his driving. He considered himself a safe driver. He did not admit to being reckless because it was not true.

One day, the two were fighting over John's driving. Susan could not believe that he drove over 60 miles per hour on a road that changes into a highway. John argued that it was already the highway and that the speed limit is 65 miles per hour. Susan thought John should not drive at the speed of 65 miles per hour because this was a transit road from the regular road to the highway. Therefore, a driver should be extremely careful and not go over 45 miles per hour, which is the speed limit on the regular road. Both have their own reasons, and both seemed right.

A little annoyed with the repetitious arguments, Susan talked about it with her friend, Joanne, who is seven years older than Susan. Joanne asked Susan why she complained about her husband's driving behavior. She asked if Susan was afraid of an accident. Susan said she did not think it caused an accident. She has continuously said that she wanted to be safe, because she does not want anything to happen to either herself or her husband. Joanne also asked if it came from love for her husband. Susan agreed. Joanne laughed and said it was funny to fight if it was because of love. Susan thought so, too.

Susan thought about her conversation with Joanne for several days. The next time her husband drove her to the gym she had a talk with him. She said, "John, I see your driving behavior changed recently. Your driving is getting more conservative and safer. I am proud of you. I might have said too much on your driving." John was surprised by his wife's remark and did not know how to respond to it. He suddenly felt sorry about how his driving scared his wife, who was not very good at driving. He felt terrible and apologized.

Aesop's "North Wind and Sun" tells us that a harsh attitude will be countered by a harsh attitude. However, if you take a gentle approach, you will get a warm response.

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