The Story Of “The Gorilla In The Cage”.

Every morning on his way to work, a man had to walk pass the local zoo, where he kept observing that there was a gorilla in a cage that was always crying. After a few weeks and with a few minutes to spare, he decided to stop and ask the zookeeper, “Excuse me; but why is that gorilla in the cage always crying?” The zookeeper replied, “Oh, that’s because he’s got a thorn [picker] stuck in his thumb.” The man then asked the zookeeper why doesn’t the gorilla simply pull the thorn out. The zookeeper calmly responded, “Because it only hurts him enough to cry about it.”

Okay I admit to having a few pet peeves. One of them; I cannot stand the decision of those who choose to “cry and complain” about everything. I am sure that we all know (at least) one person who always “cries” about what they do not have, about how bad their day is, or about any and all of their life issues. They drain you, and absorb all (or most) of your creative energy. Because of that, we MUST avoid such people when they are in that self-pitying state if we intent to succeed at accomplishing our goals, even if those goals are to their benefits.

In The Prophet, Khalil Gibran posits that “[Y]our pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding.” Without pain, growth is nonexistent. This is true regardless of the discipline, art or industry. As an entrepreneur, one must be willing to embrace pain, as does a mother in the delivery of her baby. Your business, in fact, is your “baby”. In your “first trimester”, you are experiencing morning sickness, from a “life” that you cannot (yet) see but feel in your gut. You experience “mood swings”; happy one moment, and “cranky” the next. You cry more often than normal, and sometimes, you are (quite frankly) an emotional wreck. You have your “good days” and your “bad days”, and that’s okay. In your “final semester”, the pain of “contractions” are anticipated with excitement more than fear, because you KNOW what you are about to deliver!

We can all recount numerous clichés on the subject of pain, and they all agree that there is no “gain” without it. In order for our pains to be of value, however, we must learn from our past experiences in dealing with pain. The gorilla in the cage, failed to learn from the pain he felt, and he lacked the confidence in the knowledge that he could have done something to ease it. Plus, it was his pain and not the zookeeper’s, the latter of whom went about his day-to-day activities apathetic to the primate’s agony. Your “pain”, after all, belongs to you and only you. Own it. Embrace it. Be thankful for it. And, as Bob Marley sang, “[W]ho feels it, knows it…”

MORAL: To complain (cry) about things without doing something, makes us just as foolish as that gorilla in the cage. For far too many, things only bother them to the point of complaining and not to action.

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