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Low adrenaline days, Japanese style

I was at the auto shop in Melbourne, buying a pack of hubcaps, takeaway. I asked the burley bloke behind the counter ‘Could you open them for me, with those scissors’. He was happy to, even though its more direct to just tear it open.

I explained “In Japan they never tear anything open. It gets your adrenaline up. For about 20 minutes afterwards, you’ll do everything with ‘fight or flight’ switched on, and that's no good for anyone.”

He was looking at the task intently now, with a bit of a thrill in his eyes, as scissors sliced through hard plastic, like butter.

Persuading people is my hobby, so I continued.

“Life is tough enough in Japan without picking fights with your stuff. You are allowed to take the time to find the scissors and open things gently, and protect your mood".

Yeah! It feels so much better. I’m opening everything with scissors from now on!

And he probably did.

Reduce those life-shortening stress chemicals. Go and buy a heap of attractive, capable scissors, and place them a hand's reach away from where you do stuff. On the kitchen bench, your vanity table, and in the glove box are where I keep some of mine.

When you go to pick flowers, when you open your breakfast cereal, take the extra 10 seconds to do the Japanese scissor-opening ceremony.

Stroll through the house and go apologise to all the things torn open, vanquished.

Everything in your home is your ally, understood and respected, wishing to serve you, wishing you well.

Will it impact the tone of your relationships, with the built-in conflicts gone?

Try it, and let me know.


I consult homes and workplaces on ways to declutter, re-set, and take away the obstacles that create a background of low-level conflict. If you want an extra pair of eyes to see the obstacles you and your team have been putting up with, I would love to hear from you. Send me a message, and lets see what we can do together. As soon as I walk in your room, I see where the fights I don't want to have are located. I know the next do-able, worth-while step to get things and people co-operating, and before long, everything is floating.

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