We checked in to our room at a sunny resort in Dominican Republic, thanked our bellman with words and cash, and I kicked off my shoes. Filled with excitement for the coming week with plans of relaxation, spending time with our friends, and exploring the area, we began to unpack.
Since I used my computer during travel, it was low on battery, so I pulled it out of the bag and bent down to plug it into the outlet under the desk. After standing, I attached the cord to the power outlet on the laptop and received a little zap. “Got my finger in between the two metal pieces,” is what I thought.
I proceeded to move the laptop to the corner of the desk so it would be out of the way, and when I touched the metal laptop case, I received my second shock. A vibration shot up my arm. This time, I let out a small shriek as I jumped back.
That got my husband’s attention. He asked me what I was doing, so I explained the zaps I was receiving. He walked up, put his hand on my computer, and… nothing. Then he looked at me funny.
Confused and wondering if I imagined the zaps, I put my hand on the laptop again. Zaaaap! It happened again. And again, he put his hand on it, and… nothing.
It was at that moment I wondered if I was losing it. Was I going crazy? Could I be imagining it? It felt very real. My mind raced as it argued with itself. It was experience vs self-doubt – “I’m not crazy. I know I was shocked.” Vs “it’s not shocking him, so I must be crazy.”
Experience won. I told myself, “I was shocked. He wasn’t. Figure out what the difference is.” A few seconds of silence passed. Then a thought zapped into my mind that felt as unexpected as the electricity that passed through my arm. He is wearing his rubber sandals, whereas I am barefoot.
“Take off your shoes and then touch it,” is what I said to him. He smiled, kicked off his shoes, and put his hand on my computer. “Whoa!” he said. “What the…?”
Turns out, I am not crazy. There was something strange going on with that outlet. He unplugged my computer, and we took it across the room to a different outlet. For the rest of the week, I was cautious when using my laptop, but thankfully received no more shocks.
The lesson I was reminded of that day was – Self-doubt will creep in at times, and it’s my job to recognize it and fight against it. Self-doubt only affects me if I let it. I can use will, focus, and experience to overcome those doubts, as can we all.