My friend and I were on our way to a meeting and very possibly lost. She had missed a turn while we were talking and was trying to get new guidance from her GPS system. “Recalibrating. In 100 yards turn left.” We couldn’t get over to the left turn lane in time. “Recalibrating. Turn left onto Lincoln Street.” We made the turn and were finally back on track, but my friend was clearly rattled.
“I feel so stupid.” she said. “I think the lady in the GPS is judging me for not getting it right.” My friend seemed to be over reacting. After all, it’s just a recorded voice. But, then I remembered a time when I had felt the same way.
I started asking people how their relationships were with the lady in their navigation devices. Some felt guilty for not following her directions, while others took joy in doing the opposite of what she said. One of my friends felt dependent on her and another would just ignore her. A couple of people admitted to having arguments with their GPS ladies that included some juicy swear words I won’t repeat here.
So, how does a recorded voice in a box have so much power over us? She triggers our stuff. Her neutral directions tap into those places inside of us that have not healed and then we react. This is actually a wonderful opportunity. She is like a therapist in a box that brings forward our stuff and reveals areas for us to work on. The upset is ours. The opportunity is ours. And, when the day comes that we listen to her say that she is recalibrating without being triggered, we will know we have done well.
Your Turn: How do you relate to the GPS lady and what can you learn from her?