Last week I had one of those days... You know the ones. The ones where you no matter how many proverbial "lay-ups" you got, there seems to be an invisible 8 ft defender standing above the rim just waiting for the last second to swat all your plans and expectations back in your face.
I had 4 separate people cancel on me for things that I had scheduled with them for the week. Each had a legitimate reason for why our appointment wasn't going to work out and I wasn't even remotely perturbed by any individual cancellation. However, after a day full of "Hey sorry, but I can't anymore..."'s, I got a little wary.
I started thinking. There is no way that this is a coincidence. There must be something more to the story here. And the more I thought about it, the more I realized that that something (or someone) is me. I am the common denominator with all of these cancellations. Maybe it isn't that these people are cancelling on me but rather that I set up a relationship in which I'm pushing or facilitating easy cancellation. Maybe I'm asking more of my relationships than what is really fair and kind.
Am I really exploiting others... my friends?
I thought about my communication and I realized that though I'd set many of the appointments up previously. I hadn't checked-in on them in a while. I often tell myself I'm really bad with scheduling. Well. That's bullshit. I choose not to be good at scheduling because I'm lazy and am not respecting others' time the way I ought to. I'm too caught up in "trying" to manage my schedule to consider the various personal and professional needs of the others involved. That sucks.
It has been both a melancholy and liberating feeling since I realized that my selfishness (which is an outcropping of my insecurities and fears) is at the core of this ^ problem and almost every problem I have. One part of me is ecstatic; I have the ability to change myself and immediately put an end to the problems I create. The other part of me is terrified. Shit! All of these issues I've created? What kind of a person am I? How do I just stop being selfish?
I'm learning that when things don't go my way, I have two choices: 1) to point the finger and look at where the others involved fell short or 2) to accept full responsibility for the situation and be honest where my shortcomings have played a role. Honesty is key and honesty with myself can be brutally painful.