There’s a customer coming toward you – oh no, not THAT customer! Complain, complain, complain.
Fred – your co-worker from Sales – wants to meet with you – ugh. That will take 3 hours, you’ll get in 2 words, and you’ll have 17 To Do’s afterward – without a Thank You!
These are our feelings when we see certain people or know we’re going to encounter them. This is how we react when we see that name come up on caller ID. These are our thoughts when we think we know what is about to happen.
This is our baggage. These are our preconceived negative notions that we take into conversations because we’ve had bad experiences in the past or have heard negative things about an individual.
The problem with carrying this baggage with us into these interactions is that it can cause us to carry a negative attitude – seeking that which bugs us and focusing on what might go wrong. It can become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
You have a good chance of having the interaction you expect. So expect the conversation will go well. Expect success.
Sure, you only have control over half the conversation – what you say and how well you listen. You have no control over what they say or how well they listen – but control your half with good intention. Control your half with openness. Control your half with a positive attitude. Control your half with professionalism. Control your half with a vision of success.
I know that certain people you have to deal with at work elicit negative reactions. But don’t let that initial reaction taint your approach in your response.
Don’t Carry the Baggage.