I got a phone call the other day from a friend whose daughter has taken up the violin. She made the wise decision to start practicing a little bit before school began and pulled out her instrument for the first time in 6 or 8 weeks. Not surprisingly, the violin was out of tune.
In trying to tune the instrument, the young lady found that the fine tuners on a couple of the strings were not working. She showed the problem to her parents, neither of whom play the violin, and they called me to come look at the problem.
“We might need a new tailpiece. Would you take a look and tell us what to do?”
Since the Mom makes a mouthwateringly good frozen Oreo pie, I headed over there the first chance I got, fully expecting to just make a simple adjustment loosening the fine tuner, tightening the peg, then adjusting the fine tuner. It’s something I advise people to do on a frequent basis, and you’ll find read the suggestion that you check your fine tuners once a month in my daily violin tip.
The young lady was relieved that her violin was okay. Mom and Dad were happy that their daughter could start practicing and that no money was involved, and I was promised a piece of Oreo pie at some time in the next few months. It was a true win-win-win situation!
But the incident started me thinking. The Mom jumped to the thought that a new tailpiece might be necessary. It was a logical thought, but proposed a radical solution for a simple problem.
I do that all the time…immediately think of the worst case scenario. (The Mom, by the way, usually does not. She is one of the most positive people I know.) Worst case scenarios are just that…WORST case scenarios. I look to the possible disaster and feel better when I find that my fears were not realized. But that means that I am stressed a good deal of the time. Many other folks operate in the belief that the simple solution will almost undoubtedly present itself, and they are frequently right. In both cases the work required to make things right is the same, it’s just the approach to the problem that differs.
I need to remember to relax, take a deep breath, and think about the likelihood of good outcomes. Sometimes attitude adjustments are hard.