The Harder We Squeeze Life, the Bigger the Mess 

To make up for lost time, I start squeezing the gas pump handle as hard as possible. In my rush to get to the next thing, my thinking is, more squeezing equals more speed! However, this particular pump has a governor preventing it from going full throttle—it shuts off if I squeeze too hard. Hence, squeezing hard is actually slowing the process. The gas finally starts flowing. My mind wanders to the million things I need to do. By not paying attention, I accidentally fill my tank to the top. Without thinking, I quickly remove it while it is still flowing, drenching myself in gasoline. A chorus of delightful squeals come from my daughters inside the car. Aside from their laughter, this was an unmitigated disaster. Then it dawned on me: I’d slipped. I’d slipped back into my old ways.

This gas station visit was a metaphor for my previous life—for so many of our lives. The harder we squeeze life, the bigger the mess we create for ourselves. In this instance, I should have literally been “going with the flow.” It’s easy to lose sight of the bigger picture when life around us is hurried or busy. Little reminders like this, are a moment for us to put our focus back in to perspective.




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About the Author: Erik Qualman

Often called a Digital Dale Carnegie and The Tony Robbins of Tech, Erik Qualman is a #1 Best Selling Author and Motivational Keynote Speaker that has spoken in 49 countries.

His Socialnomics work has been featured on 60 Minutes to the Wall Street Journal and used by the National Guard to NASA. His book Digital Leader propelled him to be voted the 2nd Most Likeable Author in the World behind Harry Potter's J.K. Rowling. Qualman is a sitting professor at Harvard & MIT's edX labs.

His latest book What Happens in Vegas Stays on YouTube is a Pulitzer Prize nominated work.
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