“Know that everything is in perfect order whether you understand it or not.” ― Valery Satterwhite
The week before last I blogged about kindness in communication. Since that time I’ve seen several posts via social media and had a few interactions with my team where people were frustrated with others for not getting back with them. For not returning the call, the email, the text. The favor. The love.
So, I wanted to take a moment to address that and talk about my philosophy on the matter, for what it’s worth.
When someone doesn’t get back with me (reciprocate) I do my best to give them the benefit of the doubt. Sometimes, yes, I have to try really damned hard, especially if I’m waiting on something I need in order to move forward.
But it helps to assume that it’s not intentional—that’s it’s not you—because it’s almost always about them. Don’t take it personally when people leave you hanging. In communication. In business. In life. In love. And here’s why: people will show you who they are, eventually. Usually, sooner rather that later. Your job is to evaluate whether or not you really want to be associated with what they show you. People who are habitually unresponsive (uninterested/rude/call it what you want) will always be that way. From the first date, right on down the aisle. From the first phone call ’til after the contract is signed.
But that doesn’t mean that you have to be at their mercy. The beauty is that you get to choose. Call it off. Back out. Change your mind. Do what you need to do.
Use the energy you expend being annoyed/hurt/angry to find someone else— someone who is responsive and will treat you the way you deserve to be treated. Give the other person the same attention they give you and then move on. While you’re busy doing that don’t forget that what you put out there comes back—heck, I think there’s even a law about it or something. ;)
Manage your expectations, sure. Give the benefit of the doubt. Once, twice, maybe, even three times. But after that it would be wise not to waste your time on someone who isn’t concerned about spending theirs on you. And I’m going to say this a again because it needs to be said: Don’t waste energy being bitter or angry about it either. Let it go, and find someone or something who deserves your time/business/love/attention.
A hard lesson to learn, sure, but oh so worth it. After all, we’re the sum of the people we spend our time with. It might be good to reevaluate whether this business/person/thing adds up. Have an air of expectancy (you’re teaching people how to treat you after all) and then let them SHOW you whether or not they meet those expectations. When they do…believe them. You’ll be a whole lot happier this way, I promise. Life’s too short to worry about unanswered texts, emails, or phone calls.
Speaking from experience, the only people I’m truly concerned about NOT hearing from these days, it’s because, well, they’re dead. Honestly. The people that remain in my life are there because they deserve to be there. Because (god, I’m lucky) they want to be. I have no intention of wasting time and energy on those that don’t. I’m too busy loving the ones who show up and vice versa. And they deserve the very best of me—which can’t exactly happen if my concerns are elsewhere.
That’s all. ;)