If you grew up at about the same period I did, you may have been introduced to the folk song which begins with that line. The song is an exchange between two siblings: Liza and Henry.
Henry begins by complaining that there’s a hole in the bucket. Liza advices him to mend it with straw. Henry counters asking with what he’ll cut the straw. After Liza states he should use a knife. Henry again complains that the knife is blunt. This leads Liza into asking him to sharpen the knife with a stone. In answer to that Henry says the stone is dry, Liza says wet it and then Henry smiles and states ‘there is a hole in the bucket’. And the merry go round begins.
I don’t know about you but the only place I like to see a Merry-Go-Round is at the play ground with kids on it. Its a great way for children to have fun. If any facet of your adult life has become an endless pursuit with no clear beginnings or endings, if there’s a hole in the bucket of your life then it is time to change something.
Like this friend of mine, let’s call her Enitan. She complained that her love life has become a Merry-Go-Round : she meets a guy -» dates him -» things start getting ‘serious’ -» he dumps her -» she goes back to the dating market. She has effectively become a serial dater in search of a serious relationship!
What Enitan needs is to throw a clog in her relationship style wheel. Hasn’t it become clicheic to say you can not do the same things in the same way and expect different results?
What are some things she can do differently? She can change the kind of guys she dates or where she meets the guys she dates; She can bring something different into the relationship; She can change her dating/relationship goals; She can allow time between relationships and use this to develop a character trait that would make her a better person.
For her part, Ugochi has been starting her weight loss programme and its not because she hasn’t started. She registers in a gym, starts strong, gets sabotaged or sabotages herself and then quits-only to start again when she sees her husband looking at a slimmer woman. Ugochi is a serial dieter.
To plug the hole in her weightloss bucket. Ugochi needs to run down the list of what could be the possible cause of the Merry-Go-Round. She may need to change gyms and have a support structure on ground to aid her weightloss. She needs to change something.
So what’s that hole in your bucket? Have you been out of school for years in search of a job and all you have is the Merry-Go-Round of circling possible jobs in the newspapers, applying and waiting to be called for an interview, getting an interview and then not getting the job? Is there something you can change? Why not stop searching for a job and create one?
Whatever the hole in your bucket is, you can mend it. You can plug it. Simply be determined to do something different.