Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Handling the Daily Frustrations

Have you ever been annoyed by attempting to get an answer by calling customer service? You know… where you keep on getting a bunch of automated messages and you just want to speak to a REAL person and get your answer!

Have you ever experienced a frustration with your computer where it just decides to freeze in the middle of typing up an important document (and you lose what you were working on!)?

Or maybe it’s that massive amount of spam that you get in your inbox that frustrates you (and no matter what you do to block it … it keeps on coming!)

Yes, all of the above are some of the daily frustrations that I deal with. They are minor in the bigger scheme of things, but they sure can be annoying when you are dealing with them in the present moment.

I recently was following up on an unpaid invoice that I submitted to a big corporate company 2 months ago. On one side of the company, they said that they sent it to Accounts Payable and that it was “out of their hands”. They recommended that I follow up with Accounts Payable. Then I contacted Accounts Payable and they said that they had no record of the invoice and that I would have to send it again. Then, I got different answers from different people as to where to send the invoice. Then, I sent it next day and find out a few days later that if it’s sent next day, it is handled in a different manner due to 9/11 and that this will slow the process down. Why didn't someone tell me that in the first place? Why can’t you get the same answer each time you speak to a different person? I don’t get it. Then, when I was asking to speak to a supervisor, the person put me on hold and I waited and waited and waited and then GOT DISCONNECTED. Sound familiar?

Here’s what I do to keep myself focused, centered and calm when these small frustrations occur:

- I take a deep breath and then blow out all the frustration. This really works for me!
- I ask myself the question “Will this matter 1 year from now?” I always answer “NO”.
That puts things in perspective for me.
- I am always polite and professional with any customer service person I deal with because
my view is that “you get what you give out”. If you are nasty, you will get nasty back!
- I always back up my computer and save things frequently while I am editing so that I
don’t lose too much if my computer decides to do it’s own thing.
- I remind myself that these are just small frustrations that I can choose to respond
differently to and that they do not have much of a meaning in the bigger picture of life.
- I think about the things I am grateful for in my life and the things that are working very well.

"If we make the small things big in our mind, they will become bigger than they really are." ~ Maria Lesetz


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