Say Yes To People
Years ago a psychologist named Viktor Frankl went toe to toe with Sigmund Freud.
Freud was teaching that what we wanted most in life was pleasure. But Frankl believed we weren’t seeking pleasure. What we wanted was a deep sense of meaning. In fact, Frankl went on to write: “When a person can’t find a deep sense of meaning, they distract themselves with pleasure.”
Because of this conviction, Frankl devoted his life to understanding the mystery of meaning and he discovered that we find meaning in life when we are connected to people in safe, intimate and growing relationships.
I think most of us know this intuitively, but Fankl’s discovery is challenging me to keep focused on what matters most, because so often I get distracted from loving the people around me. For example, I am a dad with two kids who want me to be engage in their lives. They want me to read to them before they go to bed. They want me to have water fights, and wrestle, and laugh, and play. And so they will ask question like: Dad, will you take me to the rock gym? Dad, can I stay up late to watch the game with you? Dad, can we wrestle before bed? Dad, will you stay and watch my practice?
And you know what? So often I say no because I’m tired or distracted. And yet what I really want to say is yes. Yes we can have a water fight. Yes you can interrupt me. Yes, you are important.