Squirt Guns

by Ray Reuter on August 20, 2015

Version 2Is there anything that draws out our inner demon more than a squirt gun? It is almost irresistible to not give someone a short burst of water in the face, especially when they least expect it! A little squirt won’t hurt anything, we say. It’s funny, harmless, entertaining … just a little “gotcha” that brings us pleasure.


As much as we enjoy squirting someone else unexpectedly, we despise getting the same treatment! When the tables are turned, not so funny. And then either the battle or crying ensues, rapidly sending the entire experience downhill.

As I referee the grandkids during this sport, I recognize we all have our own “squirt gun” behaviors … those things that we often do to others yet dislike being done to ourselves. They cast a shadow on the golden rule. Behaviors that come to mind include not being intentional with time, money stuff, borrowing things, giving feedback, not returning phone calls or emails, sharing, interrupting, etc. It is the challenge of Intentions vs. Actions

“We tend to see ourselves primarily in the light of our intentions, which are invisible to others, while we see others mainly in the light of their actions, which are visible to us … a situation in which misunderstanding and injustice are the order of the day.”
            — E.F. Schumacher, paraphrasing J.G. Bennett

Effectively and lovingly relating and communicating with others requires the alignment of our intentions and actions. So the next time you are tempted to “squirt” someone, make sure your aim is straight.

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