I really don’t understand this whole “what I think I hear you saying is….” thing. I guess I’m just old school, you know, say what you mean, mean what you say and be on about your way. Seriously, I’m one of those people you really have to work hard to misunderstand. Yet, it happens, mostly with the “what I think I hear you saying” crowd.
So here are a few basic guidelines:
Never ask me what I think, if you don’t want to know. I’ll tell you, seriously, what I think, not what you want to hear. So if you already know you’re doing the dumbest thing ever, just save yourself a step and don’t ask me. If I preface my response with “do you REALLY want to know?” you probably don’t want to hear the answer, feel free to say “never mind” at this point and change the topic.
If I ask your opinion, just give it to me. Don’t take the scenic trip around the topic and land oh-so-precariously on the edge of not really having said anything when you’re finished.
If we’re going out to eat and you ask “where do you want to go?” and I respond with “I don’t care”, what I’m REALLY saying is I.DONT.CARE. Please don’t feel like you need to psychoanalyze the situation and turn “I don’t care” into “you should know me well enough already to know what I want without asking”. Just pick a restaurant for crying out loud!
If I offer to do something for or with you, then I’ve already thought it out, yes I’m willing and no it’s not too much to ask. If I offer to help you and you don’t respond in any way, then you’re out of luck and the offer passes you by. Don’t drop hints about it six months later, it won’t work.
If you tell me you’ll meet me at 6:15pm, then by golly be there at 6:12pm, because at 6:16 I’m leaving, your word was no good. If I tell you I’ll meet you at 6:15 and I’m not there at 6:12, call the ER, I’ve been in an accident.
Am I the only one who misses the value of “your word”? What ever happened to those days when your word meant something?
Oh, and finally, “No.” is a complete sentence. It doesn’t need an explanation, just accept it.