The Fable of The Boiling Frog

I think most of of us have heard the boiling frog story. A frog is put in a pot of cold water with very low heat turned on beneath. Gradually, as the water warms, the frog will adjust with no problem. Over some time, the temperature is increased but the frog continues to adjust to the temperature. And just when the water reaches boiling point, the frog discovers it can no longer jump out! The frog was slowly being drained of all it’s energy by adjusting to the rising temps. It’s trapped. And now it has lost all of it’s strength and can no longer jump out. And so the frog dies, with no chance of jumping out to save itself.

cute green frog
cute green frog

We’ve All Been The Frog (to some degree)

Haven’t we all been in this place to some degree? Like this metaphor, many of us have been in situations or relationships in which we’ve felt discomfort or unease. Perhaps it’s an interaction with a co-worker. Or the behavior of our child, or our spouse. But instead of stopping and addressing the problem, we may find ourselves minimizing the issue. Maybe we do stop and say something. But the other person laughs it off or dismisses the situation. We think, “oh, they did not mean to do or say that. It was only a one-time thing.” And so, with an excuse or perhaps distraction, we simply let it slip by.

couple in silhouette

But it niggles at us. And when it happens, yet again, we make up a reason or excuse to ignore the behavior. And then, if we don’t stop to pay attention and take steps to resolve or stop the issue, it becomes an unfortunate part of our lives. We become The Boiling Frog. Before we know it, we are immobilized. We feel trapped and are struggling to figure out how to get out of the situation.

Pay Attention to Potential Harmful Situations

coworkers in office space

Of course, I’m talking here about situations that are potentially harmful. If you find your child, for example, hiding alcohol or drugs in their bedroom, you must immediately address the problem right away. Or if you discover your spouse has secretly opened credit cards or bank accounts without your knowledge, then you need to pull them aside and have a serious discussion about what’s going on. Or if you see behavior of a co-worker that is threatening, or underhanded, like stealing, you need to address these situations asap.

Ignoring or letting situations like these slip by are only going to make your life worse in some way or another down the line.

Directly Address the Problem

Addressing problems right away help us avoid unhealthy habits and behaviors. Yes, it can feel uncomfortable at the time. But the consequences of letting situations like these slide will only cause more harm. Adapting to harmful situations can become a negative habit, causing low self-esteem and passivity. It’s best to take action when you feel that “niggle” that something is not right.

Hypnotherapy can help people feel and become more assertive if they tend to have difficulty dealing with problems head on. It can help people climb out of that pot of water before it’s too late. Don’t be The Boiling Frog!

Have you had situations when you’ve felt like the Boiling Frog? Tell us in the comments below. It may help someone else!

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