A few nights ago, I was invited to a friend's house to watch some "Thursday Night Football." He lives a couple of cities away, about 10 miles or so. Normally it's a 15-minute drive on the 405 freeway. On this night, the journey took almost an hour!
When I got to my exit, traffic stopped completely. I thought maybe there was an accident, but when I approached the actual off-ramp, I saw the problem. Instead of merging into the lane before the off-ramp, scores of people decided they were simply going to race all the way to the point where the off-ramp began (but before they hit the off-ramp sign) and then cut in front of everyone.
The problem with this maneuver is as they try to merge their cars they end up stopping the flow of traffic in two lanes; the one they're coming from and the one they're going into. One guy even cut off a bus in front of me, trying to get in!
As I creeped along I saw that the two right-hand turn lanes were completely jammed because a couple of drivers decided they were going to stop their cars in the middle of the right-hand turn lanes to try and get their cars in the left-hand turn lanes.
Of course! Why not just stop all traffic by stopping your car in the middle of the lane? After all, it's not as if you couldn't make a u-turn and add only about 5 minutes to your trip. So, why not make every behind you pay for your error?
Whether we want to admit it or not, we're all connected to one another in some type of unspoken social contract. The contract dictates things like when a new cash register opens up, the next person in line should have first dibs, not the first person who notices the register is open. If you're in an elevator and you see someone running for it, you hold the door open, as a courtesy.
And repeat after me: If you get a phone call in church, the movies, live theater etc., you don't answer it and have a conversation!
The basic element of this social contract is that it requires people to look for out for their own interests along with the interests of others. It means that we agree to make sacrifices when necessary for the greater good and that just because we want to do it doesn't mean we should.
Can you imagine how much better things would be if people just remembered these words of leadership expert and author John Maxwell, "With one small exception, the world is made up of other people."
Now it's your turn! What are some of your relationship pet peeves?