Monday, April 26, 2010

Be Nice - Part I

This is a blog post that's a long time coming. Like, I've been pondering this issue for months, possibly years. And recently (last week), I was in a 3- day "7 Habits of Highly Effective People" seminar at work and it's what inspired me to actually sit down and write this. This is also kind of "soap box" type stuff for me.

I am having trouble even narrowing down the topic (as I am typing right now, I don't have a blog title yet). So I will see if I can dig right in. (ok I just typed a bunch and deleted it all haha).

Crabby People.

Crabby people bug me. Crabby strangers bug me - you know, rude cashiers, a customer service rep whose job is to the answer the phone but with each "hello" she makes it very clear that she has better things to do, the crabby lady in Walmart (I am clearly just imagining this one since I don't shop there) with extremely poor hygiene, in dirty stretch pants, wearing all of her 4,000 McDonald's meals on her hips, yelling at her 5 "no shirt, no shoes" kids under 5 for simply being kids.... people like that bug me. But while crabby strangers bug me, crabby non-strangers bug me even more.

When I was in jr. high and high school, my crabbiness peeked. I hated going to school: some days my friends liked me; some days they didn't. I was really insecure (who wouldn't be after being told someone thought they have gained weight and had the bushiest eyebrows??). I had no plans for after high school. And worst of all, I had to get up every morning for school. I hated (and still do) getting up in the mornings.

One morning, just like every day that preceeded it, I was stumbling from my bedroom to the bathroom, probably running late, and probably assuming that everyone should clear out of the bathroom because I only had 5 minutes till we walked out there door (this is a great example of the old saying, "A lack of planning on your part doesn't constitute and emergency on my part," except at the time, I thought my lack of planning should have constituted an emergency bathroom evacuation on my family's part). Anyway, just like every morning, my dad said "good morning" to me, to which I responded "_____" <-- nothing.

My dad had had it; and rightly so. He told me that I had no business being so crabby at everyone in the family all the time. And he was right. I was choosing to be crabby... every day. I hated school, I hated getting up, I hated being a jr. high and then high school girl and all the drama and insecurites that went along with it. But that didn't give me any right to be crabby with my family. And with those I love.

I get very annoyed when family or friends are crabby. I know that life can be rough. I get that you are annoyed because your husband is being a turd today, or because work is overwhelming, or because your kid didn't do the dishes for the 3rd day in a row. I get it. But why, oh why, must you take it out on ME? Why, when we have a bad day at home do we have to be b!tchy to our friends at work? And why, when we have a bad day at work, do we have to be b!tchy to those at home? I hate walking up to someone who was all cheery yesterday and getting the cold shoulder - the "I really wish you hadn't just walked up to me" look -with not even a little effort to be cordial.

I am NOT saying you can't be annoyed or crabby. And clearly this doesn't apply to tragedy. But if you are choosing to remain crabby about "insert situation that made you crabby here but has nothing to do with those who you are with now," and you don't want to talk about it, then do those around you a favor when they try to interact with you and get a cold shoulder: 1) tell them you are crabby but it's not at them and 2) go somewhere else till you de-crabify.