It’s hard to see around an elephant.
They get in the way when you’re trying to connect with people. They keep you from seeing or hearing each other very well. That’s true literally and figuratively.
When there’s an elephant in the room, relationship is hindered because there’s a problem hiding in plain sight that no one is willing to acknowledge, let alone talk about.
It happens in marriages. It happens in families. It happens in business. We’ll peer around the elephant to see the other person, but we only get a glimpse. The elephant is big, and it smells, but nobody says anything.
Mike Bechtle had an “elephant in the room” experience with his daughter. It started one Christmas when he agreed to build bunk beds for his granddaughters.
He was good at woodworking and following blueprints, but he wasn’t good at designing.
He didn’t know what to do. He looked online for plans and tried to draw up a few himself, but they never worked out. Weeks, then months, went by the bunk beds never materialized. Still, he and his daughter never spoke about it with each other.
After two years, Mike realized the bunk beds had become an elephant in the room that separated him from his daughter. So, finally, he sat down with her, and they talked out the problem together.
Unresolved conflict – whether it’s in marriage, parenting, friendships, business, or even government – can escalate and become a war. How do
we diffuse a problem and reconnect with others?
Dr. Mike Bechtle is with us on our program to offer practical tips and advice for getting the elephant out of the room. He is a speaker, consultant, ministry coach, and the author of a number of books, including Dealing with the Elephant in the Room: Moving from Tough Conversations to Healthy Communication.
We have Mike’s books, and many other resources related to marriage, parenting, and faith available in our online store.