When I’m out and about, I am a keen observer of human behaviour. On a recent train journey, the carriage I was in was about half full, and a mix of airline style seats, and double seats with tables (as we know, those are much sought-after!).

Many of the airline seats meant that passengers were facing backwards -ie not in the direction of travel… and like most people, I prefer to be facing forwards. And to add to the discomfort of most passengers, the sun was shining right into the carriage, and most people were desperately trying to shield their eyes from the tortuous glare!

Then, at one station, a large number of people got off the train, leaving several of the “double seats” free. The train pulled away again. The next stop wasn’t due for some time. But no one moved. No one got out of their uncomfortable position (facing the wrong way, with sun in eyes, and with no space or a table to relax at). Interesting.

So, after three minutes, I got up, smiled, moved the few paces across the aisle, and sat down to enjoy the comfort of the rest of the journey, facing forward, able to read in comfort and do a bit of work at a table. And I could tell that most of the other passengers were thinking “I wish I had done that”. Instead, they had got comfortable in their discomfort, and did nothing.

It’s so easy to become “uncomfortably numb” in life, in business.
Time to shift?