Driving Around With a Flat Tire

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“A bad attitude is like a flat tire; you can’t go anywhere until you change it.” —Unknown

I was browsing through my photo gallery some days ago when I stumbled upon this interesting quote and I just couldn’t agree more with it. Indeed, having a bad attitude (and doing nothing about it) is just as dangerous as driving around with a flat tire. My friend Eli would have called it a Trojan horse, outwardly adorned in white linen but there is a gothic apparel underneath it. Push the analogy of the flat tire a little further and we’ll realize that the gravity of the situation at hand is much more devastating than what we actually perceive.

Experts say that when you get a flat tire while driving, the most advisable move to make is to gradually bring your vehicle to a stop and pull it off the road. Don’t continue to drive around with the flat tire because 1. You can easily destroy your vehicle and 2. Your vehicle can lose balance, skid off the road and cause a major accident. Already, a vehicle plying the road is regarded as a potential hazard to the driver (the individual), the occupants of the car (family ties and other closely associated partners) and pedestrians, other vehicles and objects around (other people not necessarily related to the individual). How much more a car with a flat tire! Honestly speaking, if our negative attitudes can be likened to that of a car with a flat tire, then we can’t be indifferent about them. Apart from the fact that we injure ourselves in the process, please pause for a moment to think about the harm we do to others within our proximity. I’m giving you more time to think about something that you did today, yesterday or even some weeks/months ago (and you still haven’t made any efforts to work on it). Have you declared yourself a loser in life because of that test you failed in college? Did you reject that offer because you felt you didn’t match up to the standard (Low self-esteem)? Are you saying your life is in shambles because you grew up in a poor home? Do you still think your friend is looking down on you not because you have any proof of it but you just feel like it (Insecurity)? Do you get defensive whenever someone tries to correct your mistakes? Are you over-exaggerating your failures? I have jumped to conclusion on many occasions and every time I did that, I hurt myself and the person(s) involved. My excuse may have sounded good but once I expressed that negative attitude of ‘over-generalization’, I caused an injury. Our negative attitudes may be similar or different but whatever the case, none of us is ever far from it. However, the fact that we aren’t perfect and that we can’t completely eradicate bad attitudes from our lives doesn’t mean we should accept them and say such is life. Such is life? I’m sorry but making no effort to pull your flat-tired vehicle off the road is complete selfishness. No better word can aptly express that. You get that same effect when you decide to remain adamant about changing your attitude. You’re an accident waiting to happen. You have to get yourself out of the way because when you go down, you may drag innocent lives along with you and that wouldn’t be a pleasant sight to behold.

What do we do now? What’s the way forward? Well, the GOOD NEWS IS…

Flat tires are changeable. Just as flat tires are changeable, bad attitudes are changeable too! There may be competent roadside assistance agencies (experienced people with a positive attitude) ready to help you fix your problem but the onus still lies on YOU. Primarily, You (the individual) must be fully persuaded that your problem can be solved. I’ve heard people say countless times, ‘as for me that’s how I am…I can’t change…I AM ME so LET ME BE’. We already know why it’s unacceptable to be unconcerned about our bad attitudes (please refer to paragraph 2). To add to it, once you keep professing negative statements over your life, you can never fix your problem. Words are powerful. Words have creative powers. Speaking along a particular pattern (a negative one in this context) will shape your actions accordingly and your actions will certainly begin to poison your character. That’s not good. Instead of pronouncing negativity over your life, rise up and speak positively. One of my positive confessions as a Christian when it comes to such matters is ‘With God, all things are possible.’[1] I take that major step to breaking bad attitudes and making good ones. What positive confession will you make to commence your quest?

Flat tires are preventable. A flat tire may not be completely preventable as some circumstances may be beyond our control. However, we can reduce a greater percentage of the occurrence to the barest minimum by avoiding places—rough roads with potholes, broken bottles, nails and other sharp-pointed objects—susceptible to tire punctures. In the same way, avoid places, people or things that have the tendency to trigger the negativities within and around you. If it means avoiding a certain company of friends, please do it. If it means avoiding a particular spot in your neighborhood, please do it. If it means avoiding a particular collection of books or music or TV programs or movies or any other audio-visual stimulant, please do it. Better to accept a positive change than to remain obstinate. For people who hate discipline and only get more stubborn, there’ll come a day when life tumbles in and they break, but by then it’ll be too late to help them. [2]

Attitudes don’t break and form by themselves. It’s not spontaneous. It takes a willful, deliberate effort to work towards making good ones or breaking bad ones. It’s very important to work on our attitudes because it determines how we react to people, places or things. As we know, nature hates vacuum. Air will always fill a vacuum. For that matter, be conscious about replacing a bad attitude with a good one. If you don’t, that space might be rented by a very stubborn tenant and evacuation will become a lot of work than before. Lastly, remember that change doesn’t occur overnight. We are human beings. Growth and development is an on-going process in our lives. Patience. Determination. Anticipation. Balance. Accountability. Persistence. You cannot do away with these major prerequisites if you are willing to effect a change in your life. So I won’t only say ‘With God, all things are possible’ and expect to see some magic happen in my life, I must take corresponding actions based on my confession to start the adventurous journey. Are you currently driving around with a flat tire? What are you waiting for? Pull over—slooooooooowly please—and let’s get to work!

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3 thoughts on “Driving Around With a Flat Tire

  1. Nice piece……keep on dear for you may never know the lifes you are affecting. God bless you so much dear

    Like

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