Have you attempted to break family patterns (like improving yourself by going to college) and met with resistance? Perhaps you developed an innovative approach to solve a problem at work only to be told “That’s not how we do things here.” If so, don’t despair. Here is a little story in honor of Easter to help shine a new perspective on old habits. It’s taken from our book, Erase Negativity and Embrace the Magic Within.

It was Easter and four generations of the Smith family were preparing for a holiday feast. Emily, a young bride, carefully watched her mother as she pulled out all the utensils and ingredients for the special meal. Emily knew that one day it would be her turn to prepare the feast, and when she did, she wanted everything to be perfect. Emily’s mom plopped the ham on a cutting board, slicing off the front and hind portions of the ham before putting it into a roasting pan.

“Why do you cut off the ends like that?” Emily asked, expecting some culinary insight.

The mother crinkled her eyebrows in thought and put the knife down.
“I don’t know. I guess because that’s how mama always did it,” the mother answered. Emily thought about the response, but she seemed unsatisfied.
“Grandma’s here. Maybe we should ask her,” suggested Emily. Emily’s mother nodded okay, and the two women walked into the dining room where Grandma was setting the table.

“Mom is showing me how to cook the ham and I was wondering why you cut the ends off,” began Emily. “She said that’s how you always did it, so she did the same.”
Grandma adjusted the silverware next to her best china, wiped her hands on her apron, and thought a moment.

“You know, I never really thought about it,” she answered. “That’s how your great grandma always did it, so that’s the way it’s always been done.”
At that moment, Emily’s brother wheeled Great Grandma Smith into the house. Emily, her mother and her grandmother walked over to the matriarch, gave her a kiss on the cheek and wheeled her next to the dining room table. Emily patted her great granny on the arm and bent next to her so she could hear her question.

Mom, grandma and I were in the kitchen getting ready to cook the ham and we had a question. Why do you sliced off the ends of the ham before you put it in the roasting pan.”

“Hmph,” snorted the old woman. “I cut off the ends of it because my dang roasting pan was too small.”

Author's Bio: 

Sally Marks is the president of Marks Public Relations and the co-author of the self-help book, Erase Negativity and Embrace the Magic Within. You can purchase the book through Amazon or on the author's website, www.erasenegativity.com.