Right, so I’m a word junky, always have been. Since childhood I’ve had a love affair with literature more intense than Gatsby’s love for Daisy. I consume words as though they are an adjunct to my breath. I’ve been known to understand foreign languages, because deep within me the sound of a word resonates with the very thing it is supposed to be describing. Exceptionally careful about what I say, I can be a pedantic listener, who must be sure you meant to use the particular word you chose to use. How else am I to understand exactly what you meant? This is who I am and I wouldn’t change it for all the books in the Alexandria Library. Recently however, I’ve had a problem. I write a lot, and as I’ve delved deeper into the motivational realms, I’ve noticed an unlikely duo of words jostling for prime position in my writing. I’ve become very conscious that when I proceed to pen the word problem, what appears on the paper as if by magic, is the word challenge. Every time. And it’s really starting to piss me off.
I have little idea when I began this behaviour, when this unwarranted hesitation surfaced about deeming something a problem, for fear of sounding negative. Somewhere along this coaching journey, it appears I jumped on the challenge bandwagon without really thinking about the route it would take me. I understand the intention, really I do, I get it. But actually, I’d quite like to be allowed to discuss problems, to be able to own my problems even, without being corrected. And so I’ve decided that I will be stepping off this parade, I will from henceforth be using whichever term feels appropriate to any given situation. Because sometimes guys, we have problems. Straight-up, annoying, expletive-inspiring problems. Using the P word doesn’t mean we’re not going to solve the hell out of them, or that we’re less enlightened than the C word users, it just means we’re not pretending to have some cute contest with ourselves. From now on, I’m all about embracing the P word and if anyone finds that uh, challenging, then that’s their problem, not mine.