I Don’t Need to Care about Everything: Dawn Knight, Regional Director (WA, OR, ID, NV, AZ, WY, ND and CA)
….or should the title really be “I Don’t Need to Make Everything My Business”?
I am trying; I really am, to not think that my opinions, thoughts, empathy, and feelings are life’s answers to everyone else’s problems. For some reason, when having a normal conversation with people I feel the need to care – a.k.a. get vested – in whatever they might have going on. Sure, I give the dutiful and polite head nod so they know I am listening…and to make them want to continue talking. Meanwhile, I haven’t heard much after the initial problem statement because now I am totally focused on how sad/angry/annoyed/hurt/betrayed/insulted they MUST feel about, again, whatever they might have going on. I generally want to hug them. Enter the odd looks as I do stand up and hug them and am all teary-eyed while they, of course, are thinking I am a lunatic.
It’s not enough that I hug them and quite possibly hold onto them like a fly on sticky tape….noooooo, there must be MORE I can do because, again, I care. So then, I am the one who gets dramatic and starts to think of things I can say, do, or buy to make them feel better. I have bought a post-conversation gift bag items of candles, books, cards, cupcake flavored dental floss, funny trinkets, meaningful trinkets, monogrammed M&M’s, Whoopee Cushions (I mean really, who doesn’t love those?!), chicken laying egg key rings, SPAM-flavored macadamia nuts (who knew?), signed them up for the Bieber-Fever exclusive fan club,…you get the idea – anything to show them I care and want them to feel better.
Additionally, I am now offering unsolicited advice. I got past the caring part and now I just want to fix their problem because, well, I think that what I have to offer is simply brilliant. My Mother always told me that I ‘had that gift’ and, although I haven’t listened to everything she said through the years, I heard that statement LOUD and CLEAR. Brilliant. Gift. My daughter. It’s like it’s tattooed in my brain.
However, I have decided that one of my annoying habits that is actually annoying to even me is when I start projecting my brilliant gift to people. I’m not kidding, before I realize it, I am chattering on like I’ve had a quad-shot-venti-latte-with-an-espresso-shooter! I seriously can’t stop myself. Can’t. Stop. Myself. I see their head nod and I think that’s my cue to keep going. I am helping them after all! Yeah, no. I need to stop. They haven’t asked for my opinion…gosh, I wish they would….but still, they haven’t so I need to stop. I’m trying; I really am.
Newsflash! I found a way to continue caring about people and their whatevertheyhavegoingons without 1. Getting ridiculously vested and 2. Offering unsolicited advice. I listen. I encourage. I support. I love. I sit back. I still hug. I don’t judge. I still by those gift bags items. I check in. I still care just as much, but just show it differently. If none of that works, I really do have a stash of Whoopee Cushions for strictly emergency situations.
Encourage and Support where you can….