This weekend, I taught my “little” from the Big Brothers Big Sisters program how to rappel. I set him up at the top of a hill and showed him how to tie in and use a friction device and a special safety knot to descend a double rope. He practiced a few times and then I took him to a steeper hill with a small cliff on it and he was able to rappel down that too. He’s scared of heights and was pretty psyched about all this. Afterwards, as we drove to an ice cream parlor, he repaid his rappel lesson by telling me a story about Thor.
The story takes place in a castle’s hall that is full of giants. They challenge Thor to a variety of tasks: wrestling a crone, an eating contest, a drinking contest, and a foot race. Despite being a god, Thor loses on every account and is humiliated. Only when he is leaving does the lord of the castle reveal to him that every contest was fixed in some manner. The crone was actually old age and all strength falls to that, the eating contest was against fire who eats all, the drinking contest was rigged with a drinking horn that had a hole connected to the sea, and the foot race was against thought, “for no action is faster than thought.” (The actual story involves more characters and scenes: https://norse-mythology.org/tale-utgarda-loki/ )
No action is faster than thought is a good lesson to take from a story.
Many problems can be anticipated long before you encounter them. One of the goals of a business growth plan is to bring these to light and address them on paper before they are realized as an obstacle to the business.
No one can predict the future, but that doesn’t mean the future is unpredictable.
Featured image is Thor and party facing the immense jötunn Skrymir in an illustration (1902) by Elmer Boyd Smith. Used under public domain.