Thursday, May 13, 2010

Take Care and Think Ahead

My family and friends are always getting on me about worrying too much. I tell them that I don't really worry, but that I know every action causes a reaction. Sometimes those reactions are good and some aren't. I can watch what someone is doing and predict a number of possible outcomes, some of which cause me to speak out, therefore making it look like I worry.

For instance, years ago when my husband put the barbecue grill in the back of a truck, I told him that he should tie it down. He didn't. And yes, the barbecue grill flew out the back of the truck on the first turn he made. I could see it happening ahead of time, but I was labeled the "worrier."

When my nieces and nephews were toddlers, they would crawl up on kitchen stools. It would make me sick to my stomach, but didn't seem to bother anyone else. I could envision them falling onto the floor, hitting their heads, or worse. Only after I would say something, would their parents tell them to get down. Again, everyone thought I worried too much. I thought they didn't worry enough.

The truth is, I don't think I worry too much. But I can visualize the possible results of actions.

I see people all the time doing things that have the potential to be problems. People are driving while talking on cell phones. They're in cars without wearing their seat belts. They ride motorcycles without helmets. They sunbathe without sunscreen. And this is just the mild everyday behavior, certainly not the extreme risk-taking type.

Truth is, I have no problem with risk-taking behaviors if the people know the risks and take all safety precautions. They have the ability to foresee problems before they occur and limit their risk through foresight. What bothers me is the number of people who take multitudes of risks, never thinking about consequences, or that anything could actually happen to them.

And yet every year hundreds of people are injured or worse through careless behaviors. Students need to be especially careful because, while they're most likely to take chances, they're the least experienced to handle them. It is even more important this time of year with proms and graduations.

So be safe, be careful, and think ahead.

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