Emergencies seem to demand that we take action. Not just action, but immediate action. Haven’t you ever stepped out of your vehicle onto an emergency scene ad had someone implore you to begin taking action? It happens frequently. And even if nobody urges us to being doing something, the urge remains.
The problem with, “do something!” is that it leaves out the most important part. In the midst of an emergency action means nothing. Right action means everything. Wrong action does nothing to solve the problem. Only appropriate, well thought out action moves us toward our goal.
But few people know the difference. For the lay person imploring us to begin doing something, the unspoken message is to do something smart and effective to help the situation. But really, any action will do. Just about anything other that something completely nonsensical will make the lay public begin feeling better about the whole situation.
It takes discipline in these moments to slow down and refuse…completely refuse to take any action other than correct and thoughtfully considered action. This takes time. The less experienced you are, the more time it takes to find the right action and implement it. And isn’t it unusual that the less experienced we are, the faster we tend to move. This doesn’t make us any more effective, but it looks a whole lot better than taking a step back and thinking things through.
Action is not the same thing as right action. Doing something isn’t the same thing as doing the right thing.
Now it’s your turn: I’d like to know what you think about that.