There are many things that I love about my job. I love the hours. I love my regular responsibilities. I love when customers respect my experience and I love when I can solve problems that other people have failed at.
But, the one thing that I don’t love, all of the time, is dealing with people.
Some days, I just can’t people. Most times, it’s because of specific people. Other times, it’s all people. For instance, Monday mornings are the worst when I have to deal with people, it interrupts my other responsibilities and having people around becomes an obstacle course. One of the unfortunate side effects of working for a hospitality-type business is that we are open to the general public and that means dealing with rude people or dealing with people who are intoxicated or high on drugs. Dealing with those types of people pushes all of my buttons because I find it hard to be compassionate with toxic people. On the days when it’s hardest to deal with people, I’m thankful that my Bluetooth earpiece is a media device, that allows me to listen to music on my smartphone or tablet, in relative peace and nobody around me is the wiser. It helps keep me cool calm and collected and helps me stay zen when peopling gets really difficult.
I love my partner, but sometimes, I can’t people with him, either. Particularly when he eats in my vicinity. He drowns his food in condiments and then whatever is left over he uses his fingers to sop it up or even licks the packaging or plate like a kid with no manners. And, don’t get me started on the sounds I have to endure when he is eating. I can’t stand the gum-smacking, the crunching sounds, or the slurping. I have to eat when he eats so that the sounds that I make drown out his eating noises.
I prefer to text rather than talk on the phone, unless nuance is important and then, unless it’s certain people that I wholeheartedly enjoy speaking to, I try to keep the phone call short and sweet. I don’t answer phone calls from phone numbers or Caller ID addresses that I am not familiar with. If someone calls and I don’t answer, if they leave a voicemail and the call seems legit, then I’ll call or text them back, if necessary.
There was a time where it felt like I was better at dealing with people, but looking back, a lot of those times either involved a private office, loud music, or alcohol. Sometimes I miss those days. But, they are never coming back and I’m okay with that. But, I am not okay with dealing with angry, rude, or toxic people. My patience is a lot shorter than it used to be. Music and writing are a good antidote, but sometimes, I’m so worn out from peopling that I can’t even take any joy in any of those things, either.
This is why I value my alone time. I need that time to think in peace and plan how to people better. I also use that time to do the things like writing in a space where I can think and speak without censoring myself. I also enjoy powering down with gaming apps or games on my computer on particularly difficult days. My crochet and my guitar are also a pretty good escape plan and they are offer me a challenge, as well. But, sometimes, I just want quiet. No streaming video. No games. No news. No nothing. I just want to be.
After a good night’s sleep, a good breakfast, and a hot shower, I’m geared up to try peopling, again. But, from Monday through Friday, I am longing for Saturday, typically the first full day that I am people-free with the exception of family (who don’t count, because I enjoy peopling with them, it’s the rest of the world I take issue with).
I long for the day when I can get my business off the ground and quit my day job, so that I don’t have to people so often or, at least, I can people with fewer rude and toxic individuals on a daily basis. Until then, I guess I’ll just turn up the tunes, tweak my daily attitude, stick to the best routines for my moods and just keep peopling so long as it’s necessary, even on days when it feels like, sometimes, I can’t.