“It is a wise thing to be polite; consequently, it is a stupid thing to be rude. To make enemies by unnecessary and willful incivility, is just as insane a proceeding as to set your house on fire. For politeness is like a counter–an avowedly false coin, with which it is foolish to be stingy.”
― Arthur Schopenhauer
Who is the difficult one? The person that demands a certain level of politeness or the person that never refrains from displaying their lack of civility any chance they get?
Working in a field where skill is involved in handling animals, often times to hurt them for their own good, one learns that calmness and respect go a long way to keeping the situations manageable. Trust comes from respectful interactions. Trust is never gained through any kind of force. Unless it is a polite, emotionless force that is applied. Which is a zen kind of holding and releasing at the same time (and maybe the addition of some helpful drugs).
My ‘You’re Fired’ story is making me wonder who is the asshole…me or her…and truthfully at this moment in time, I believe it to be me because I don’t care, which is comical and eye opening at the same time. When you no longer care, you no longer try. The one thing I cling to without clinging to it is a solid decision to never see this person again. Three strikes and you are out. I’m sure we gave her more then three tries too. The final being added on to the end of a very long day which included a client falling and breaking her arm and her knee cap in our waiting room.
Pink slip, client firing letter, go away forever and never come back run through my mind like a raging river. No desire whatsoever to make this situation work out. Ignorance combined with complete rudeness are one ugly combination.
I know this is one of those people that are testing me, and I am choosing failure because I want to. I don’t believe in rudeness. Ever and if I’ve ever been rude, I try to apologize within 24 hours to whoever it was. And I didn’t react rudely this time, she hung up on me before I could get there. To send a firing letter is to admit defeat (and feels rude). The inability to make everyone happy flashing in my mind as we discuss it. Goodbye evilness is the bigger neon sign flashing in my brain.
We have the most amazing office manager, in reality, an angel sent from heaven. The most giving of herself person I have ever met and only wish I had half of her genuine care and generosity with no expectation of anything in return. If I learned anything yesterday, it was the complete obviousness of good and evil in the simple, everyday interaction of people. Kindness magnified a billion times over and it’s just her nature, she doesn’t have to try to be this way. The Mother Theresa gene just a part of her DNA. So why didn’t we fire this person when she made our office manager cry a year ago?
I think I came to a conclusion that if that was done back then, then it would have been done more out of frustration and anger. This time it was pretty much already decided. The calm, ‘that was your last chance’ achieved with really no emotion at all. It felt right because we were so done. I’m not really sure if we should have gone farther with her, maybe eventually seen the entire circle of her coming around to being the good person that she must be? There will always be more interactions, more learning experiences, more ways to practice internal awareness of choices and ego and emotion. I am always thankful for these experiences because they are there simply for the lesson. Where one can see and apply this kind of thought by Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, ‘We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.’ The human experience being the nitty gritty ego driven emotional rollercoaster that we sometimes get stuck on.
Sometimes we want to get stuck in the moments, that’s why I wonder if I am the one being difficult demanding civility. When I should just ride the waves as they come and go and not get attached either way. Maybe next time!
“Are you a Buddhist?”
“No, I’m an asshole. But I keep trying.”
― Scott Hawkins