The Cockroach Theory for Self Development | Motivational Stories
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The Cockroach Theory for Self Development

At a restaurant, a cockroach suddenly flew from somewhere and sat on a lady.

She started screaming out of fear.

With a panic stricken face and trembling voice, she started jumping, with both her hands desperately trying to get rid of the cockroach.

Her reaction was contagious, as everyone in her group also got panicky.

The lady finally managed to push the cockroach away but… it landed on another lady in the group.

Now, it was the turn of the other lady in the group to continue the drama.

The waiter rushed forward to their rescue. In the relay of throwing, the cockroach next fell upon the waiter.

The waiter stood firm, composed himself and observed the behavior of the cockroach on his shirt. When he was confident enough, he grabbed it with his fingers and threw it out of the restaurant.

Sipping my coffee and watching the amusement, the antenna of my mind picked up a few thoughts and started wondering, was the cockroach responsible for their histrionic behavior?

If so, then why was the waiter not disturbed? He handled it near to perfection, without any chaos.

It is not the cockroach, but the inability of those people to handle the disturbance caused by the cockroach, that disturbed the ladies.

I realized that, it is not the shouting of my father or my boss or my wife that disturbs me, but it’s my inability to handle the disturbances caused by their shouting that disturbs me.

It’s not the traffic jams on the road that disturbs me, but my inability to handle the disturbance caused by the traffic jam that disturbs me.

More than the problem, it’s my reaction to the problem that creates chaos in my life.

Speech by Sundar Pichai – an IIT-MIT Alumnus and Global Head Google Chrome
Submitted by MC

{ 40 comments… add one }
  • A O Bamidele November 27, 2020, 5:18 am

    The way you react to life situation predicts the result you get. When the world gives you a broken egg you either make an omelette with it or you throw it away. the choice is yours.

  • A O Bamidele November 27, 2020, 5:08 am

    Excellent story of life. It really inspired me. Thanks.

  • Angelique February 4, 2020, 8:23 am

    It is very important to put calmness on the agenda. The waiter simply kept chaos out and reasonable order within.

  • Abdul Rahman January 10, 2020, 11:50 am

    I believe that the waiter was not disturbed because he has had some experience dealing with ROACHES. So he did what he normally do when he encounters roaches. Experience will get you through a lot of situations which would normally baffle others.

    • Uma Maheswar Nakka January 11, 2020, 4:47 am

      Bismillahir Rahamanir Rahim,

      Abdul Rahman Ji Assalamualaikum wa rahamatullahi wabarakathuh,

      You are right, like practice, experience also makes every living being, human or animals, perfect.

      Here the waiter has already experienced 2 incidents and so he is ready to handle the situation.

      But it is also true, panic blocks the brain from working.
      But to control from getting panic for even small matters is very important.
      But for other matters…..big question.


  • Amy June 15, 2018, 5:25 am

    The waiter was able to handle the issue effectively without causing any further eruptions. Whereas the ladies each flipped out when faced with the same issue, effectively passing it on and on to another person. The waiter was the last person faced with the issue because he ended the chaotic domino effect, calmly handling the issue, effectively ending it’s ability to effect anyone else.

    • Diana August 9, 2019, 10:56 pm

      I’ll bet the waiter went into the bathroom and shouted silently while washing his hands and did the dance.

  • JAYA February 28, 2018, 3:30 am


  • Jia February 27, 2018, 3:16 pm

    Loved this inspirational story

  • Romario January 18, 2018, 6:03 pm

    Mind opening!!!

  • Arch. Ayaka Torna Reuben December 25, 2017, 4:20 am

    The waiter was calm because he has seen it happen to the the others.
    Let’s us be calm and learn from the trouble of others.

  • abinya akwu November 10, 2017, 10:02 am

    This is simply impressive

  • Akshita September 30, 2017, 8:39 am

    It’s obvious that we all have different ability to handle situations..& that is only why we all r different from each other….it’s all created by god

  • Umesh September 23, 2017, 3:59 am

    What a inspiration story ! I like it very much.

  • Dan Barch July 27, 2017, 7:33 am

    A shark was coming from somewhere heading for a nearby woman. Seeing the shark, she panicked and swam toward shore, passing another woman, her friend, who was now closest to the shark. She too panicked and swam toward shore. Almost immediately she passed a wader who was now closest to the shark. The wader held firm, stayed composed, studied the shark and, when he was confident enough, got eaten.

    I mean, the ladies were less cool versus the cockroach, but they each got rid of it just as effectively, if not more so, than the waiter.

  • Dr. Rajan Perunna July 7, 2017, 4:47 am

    Really really inspiring story. We only are responsible for our destiny. Thanks.

  • ABHISHEK BHARDWAJ June 25, 2017, 10:25 am

    Good story

  • Zodwa May 4, 2017, 4:59 pm

    For every problem we r having we always shift the blame.We look for who to blame.Way of solving or handling a problem counts.Thanx for this motivational story.

  • AVa May 2, 2017, 11:32 am

    Awesome story. Thank u

  • Perlo April 29, 2017, 3:09 pm

    To shout is a choice, as well as calmness.

  • Randy April 28, 2017, 5:11 am

    The story is trully motivational. I appreciate it. Thanks

  • Ahinora Chernaeva April 15, 2017, 12:24 pm

    I am happy to see a new short story. Welcome back and thank you!

  • Biswanath Das March 16, 2017, 8:01 am

    It is kind of learning story to tackle the adverse situation in cool mind.

  • Often Thyolani March 16, 2017, 12:02 am

    This is awesome motivational story. I have liked it.very inspiring.

  • Milton March 15, 2017, 10:51 pm

    I liked the complete story but one thing is that surely ladies will get more scared of insects than men. But story is awesome no doubt.

  • Aayesha March 15, 2017, 5:57 am

    This story teach us how we should treat others whether Its animals or human beings

  • Gbenga Samuel March 14, 2017, 2:52 pm

    “It is not the load that breaks us, It is the way we carry it.” Good work! Thumb up for you!

  • Esther March 12, 2017, 10:42 am

    Our inability to handle problems/challenges cause chaos in our lives.
    A truly educative story.

  • Uma Maheswar March 11, 2017, 4:36 am

    very inspiring, thanks

  • Keletso March 11, 2017, 1:25 am

    This is a great story. I ? it

  • Michael March 10, 2017, 12:28 pm

    Thank You

  • Emily March 10, 2017, 10:59 am

    After having stumbled across this site on my holiday of 2015, I continuously read your motivational stories from beginning to end. Now, that you have posted in a while, I am so glad! Welcome back and I’m looking forward to reading more stories in the future! =)

  • Vo son March 10, 2017, 6:56 am

    I see a skip from 2015 to 2017.


  • KaNg'omo March 10, 2017, 6:02 am

    For sure this is real, thanks for this short inspirational story

  • Rama Sampath March 10, 2017, 4:29 am

    Amazing explanation. The waiter could succeed in getting rid of the cockroach (problems) because in his cool and composed state, he was able to understand the behaviour of the cockroach and think of a way to get rid of it. Also the fact remains, the other women acted on impulse and hence the drama…

  • Shibaprasad March 10, 2017, 2:59 am

    Heartwarming story

  • Anindita Banerjee March 10, 2017, 1:36 am

    Very beautiful story with strong message

  • Karma Deki March 10, 2017, 12:12 am

    I truly believe whats said in the story. I’m inspired.

  • Perpetua March 10, 2017, 12:01 am

    I think the waiter is very familiar with the cockroach for it happened so many times in the restaurant. πŸ™‚

  • Sanjay March 10, 2017, 12:01 am

    Nicely said and true fact of life. Our reaction to the problem is the outcome of what we will get.

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