One day, a young woman went to see her grandmother because she was having marital problems.
She revealed that her husband had recently cheated and, of course, she was devastated. She did not know what to do and she wondered if trying to salvage the marriage was worth it.
Her grandmother brought her into the kitchen, prepared three boiling pots of water on the stove. In the first pot, she put carrots, in the second, she put an egg and in the third, she put ground coffee beans. All without saying a word.
20 minutes later, she removed the three pots from the stove and placed the three things she had prepared in a bowl. Then, she turned to her granddaughter and asked her what she saw.
The woman replied immediately: carrots, eggs and coffee.
The grandmother brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She noted that they were soft. Then she was asked to break the eggs. After removing the shell, she noticed that the eggs were hard.
Finally, the grandmother asked her to sip the coffee. She noted that its flavor was rich. However, the young woman did not understand the purpose of the exercise so she asked her grandmother what she was supposed to take away from this.
The grandmother answered:
“Each object has faced the same adversity: boiling water. However, these three things did not react to it in the same way. Initially, the carrot is hard, but once it makes contact with the boiling water, it becomes softer and softer. As for the egg, it was fragile at first, but boiling water made it hard inside. Then finally, coffee grounds were unique in the beginning and once it came in contact with the water, the liquid changed.”
The grandmother then asked this dagger of a question: “Which of these three foods are you?”
“Are you like the carrot, that is to say, a strong person that softens during times of conflict? Are you are like the egg, that is to say, a person who has a malleable heart, but in times of conflict, it completely changes? Are you like the coffee beans, that is to say, when there is a conflict, you face it and you try to change things?
You have enough happiness to be adored, you have enough experience to be strong, you have enough grief to remain human and you hope enough to be happy. The happiest people do not necessarily have the best of everything in life. They just do their best when obstacles are in their path.
You cannot move forward in life if you do not let go of your failures and your heartbreak.
When you were born, you were crying and everyone was happy around you. So live your life as you wish to live it because in the end, it is you who will smile as people around you will be in tears because they did not live like you.”
What a beautiful metaphor to explain the different ways of dealing with a problem!