Tamara and I had one helluva chat earlier.
I don’t even know why I called her as I drove home from dropping my boys off to school but I did and …that convo blew my mind.
Now listen…Tamara is my best friend but we have completely different mindsets. We treat others the same way, but when it comes to making decisions and reacting to situations we are the antithesis of each other.
I explained to Tamara that I decided not to participate in the honor society because they were trying to get me to go to the induction in Orlando and pay $2o per ticket for my sons which I somehow managed to save and THEN they had the nerve to email the morning I was about to drive all the way up there and say that my chapter dues were due before I could even participate in the induction. I was so glad that I had already decided not to go to the induction. I’m so glad I listen to my inner self.
So I’m on the phone with Tamara explaining how I told the chapter advisors in an email that, “I wish honors for academic achievements didn’t come with a price tag.”
I then went on to explain to her that my graduate advisor is trying to have a meeting with me and our Department chair. When I asked him if the meeting was mandatory, he said No. But he still insisted that I make an appointment. I tried to be nice and say I’m tired and I have a lot to do, but through email, he still insisted. So I sent him an email reply that read: “No. I do not like to be pushed into things. If I need your help I will come to you. Please respect that.”
She started laughing. “Tee, you know you be going off on people.”
“I know Prince. I feel like I always have to. I feel like I’m always telling people to get their shit straight when it comes to dealing with me. I don’t know why I’m like that. It’s annoying having to do that all the time.”
“Yeah but Tee. You have to realize that no one is perfect.”
I rolled my eyes and listened to her…and then it clicked. Finally.
“Wait, are you saying that since no one is perfect then…”
“Tee, yes. That means that EVERYONE is going to mess up sometime and if you constantly throw people away because they mess up, you’re not going to have anyone around you in the end.”
Everyone’s gonna mess up.
Everyone’s gonna mess up.
“So you’re telling me that when that dude from last week who called and said he wanted to buy me a dessert and I told him I’d call when I was on my way and he didn’t pick up- I shouldn’t have told his ass never to call me again?”
“Anything could have happened Tee. Maybe something came up. Maybe his kids were being rowdy. Maybe his Mama needed him.”
“I think I take it personally when someone doesn’t do what they say they’re going to do. I take it as an indication of their personality and I think they’re trying to disrespect me on purpose!” I said loudly.
“I KNOW you do that,” Tamara said. “Now take what’s happening now with your job for example. You’ve gone 3 times to pick up your check and each time they’ve been too busy to give it to you. If something was going on with the people at your job you would probably say they won’t give you your check because they’re being spiteful when they’re really- just busy.”
My mouth dropped open. I would have definitely thought that.
“No one is trying to HURT YOU, Tee.”
“Then how do you know when to give someone a 2nd chance?” I questioned her. In my opinion, Tamara gives way too many chances to idiots who don’t deserve it.
“That’s a chance you have to take, Tee. I usually give 3 chances because I KNOW even I mess up sometimes and I want to be given another chance too.”
“We all need people,” she continued in a later conversation which started because she realized that she is too forgiving and nice that she feels people walk over her. “You may fire your publisher but the truth is, you can’t publish your book by yourself. You may hate the way your designer works but you can’t design, that’s not what you do. You NEED a designer! We need people whether we want to or not but it sure is a struggle to have to deal with them when they don’t keep their word. It’s all about picking your battles, Tee.”
I hate Tamara.
Ok. Give someone a chance.
Give someone a chance.
Well, I need to first start by giving myself a chance. I judge people just as harshly as I judge myself. If I don’t give excellence in my projects, I am ridiculously upset with myself. That’s why I always give excellence. I always sow seeds by helping when people ask me for help. I always deliver on time and in a remarkable way. There are no exceptions that I can think of. I make sure of that.
I’m hard on myself and others because I know that excellence is attainable. I do it all the time because I want to. I want to be the first person to arrive at work. I want to give the most brilliant ideas. I want to work harder than anyone else. I want to blow your mind with my creative work. I want to. I can. I do.
Why the hell can’t everyone else operate like that?
“Cuz Tee,” Tamara began and I could hear her sigh. “Everyone is not you. I wish everyone could be like that then my life would be a lot more simple, but they’re not. That’s life. That’s people.”