Stories from my Past: You know me so well

kind tree comic

I have had customers that I have appreciated and were a pleasure to help and those who have been challenging to keep a good attitude with. I wanted to share with you an experience with a customer who was always a challenge for everyone to make happy.

kind tree comicI had gone to her house and as usual, she was trying to do too much at once in her life. One of the things you notice with overachievers is that they put this incredible stress on themselves. Anyway, I was helping her with computer issues and I had been there an hour since she had lots of issues. She had ignored the earlier advice I had given her to avoid issues, and now reality was catching up with her. I was doing my best to fix the issue and making progress when she barged into the room and said

“I thought you said it would take about an hour. It’s been an hour and 15 minutes!” she said.

“I am going as fast as I can. I will be done in 15 minutes or less.,” I gently replied.

“Well, it’s not fast enough! I have things to do and you need to do things in the most efficient way possible…blah blah blah…” she started getting more mean and disrespectful.

I thought about the situation I was in and that if I was defensive and gave reasons why it is taking long, it would only make her more angry. I could see she was angry and that was the core problem. She was angry before she even spoke to me, so the reason wasn’t something I could address. In a flash of insight I said the following-

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“I can tell you are really stressed. Is there anything I can do to help?” I asked genuinely concerned.

She looked surprised and then smiled and responded with kindness “You know me so well. I don’t want to be stressed but too much is going on. I will come back when I get some other things handled.”

I was shocked. I didn’t expect it to work. She wasn’t known for her tender moments. Still, when you are kind to people it transforms yourself and others.