Monthly Archives: August 2014

You Don’t SAY

Andrea Freedman

Have you ever noticed that people say a lot of things that they either don’t mean, or that never end up coming to be? I can’t help wondering if they just say things that sound good, or that make them feel better about themselves.

There are those who continuously say they are going to meet you for a fictitious drink that never comes to pass. I once had a friend who repeatedly told me, “I’m going to invite you and your husband for a barbecue this summer. This time I really mean it.” I, naively I might add, thought she had “meant it” the first, second, third and all the other times she had said it.

When I first began to write full-time, there were a few people who repeatedly mentioned either collaborating with me on a writing project for their business, or hiring me to write for them. I must confess that at first, even I made the mistake of getting my hopes up, only to be disappointed.

Some friends who have promised that they would support me as a writer by doing a simple thing of following my blog have let me down. I guess I should know better. I don’t think I have to worry about offending any of them by writing this – since they probably won’t check out my blog, even though they said they were going to.

People say they are going to do business with someone, only to forget about that person without a second thought. Or, they say they are going to show up for a meeting or appointment, but will often renege or even not have the courtesy to call to cancel, regardless of whether or not someone else wastes his or her day waiting around for that person to arrive.

The other day, I was headed home when I spotted an acquaintance in her car. This woman has told me countless times that she is going to get in touch with me to arrange to meet for coffee, but so far – not surprisingly – it has not happened. Funny, this same person has no problem calling when she needs something.

When I waved at her and I noticed her start to roll down her window, rather than go over to hear her talk about us having coffee yet again, I chose instead to smile and keep walking. It is not so much that I care about an alleged coffee; it is more that I can’t bear to listen to the same BS over and over again.

Sometimes the words “I’ve been meaning to call you” could be true, but often they just roll off a person’s tongue without thinking, possibly out of a sense of awkwardness or feeling of obligation; they do it so regularly that it has become second-nature. Or, they are said out of feelings of guilt. Perhaps there are certain people we just don’t feel like calling, and we need to simply accept it and stop pretending.

I really make a conscious effort to practice what I preach. I don’t make promises I don’t think I can keep, and I call people on the day I really want to see them, rather than continuously saying that I am going to see someone, only to cancel or not follow through. Similarly, I have also learned to take what other people say with a grain of salt.

I wish people would just not bother saying anything. I for one do not need to be appeased with insincerity. Contrary to what they might think, others’ lives are not in fact hanging in the balance waiting for some fictitious drink or dinner invitation.

I hope one day when one of these phonies says, for the umpteenth time, “We’re going to get together soon”, that I will get the nerve to say “No, actually, we are not going to get together; and that’s just fine. No need to keep up with this charade.”

Personally, I would rather hear silence than waste my time listening to lip service. Say what you mean, and mean what you say. If you can’t do that, don’t say anything at all!♠

 

 

Copyright © by Andrea Freedman 2014

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It’s the Little Things

Andrea Freedman

When I woke up the other day in a less than great mood, I wondered if I would be able to salvage my day or get anything productive done. Then I stopped to think about some of the little things that make me happy.

While not every day can be a bed of roses, and there are some days when our stars and planets are just not aligned, if we try to think of just a few of life’s simple pleasures, we are sure to turn things around. Nothing earth-shattering needs to happen to make my day complete. In fact, I always say, “It’s the little things in life”. When I say that, I am not talking about all the little things that can bother us, disturb our thoughts or make us feel uneasy. I am talking about the nice little things, things that some people might consider silly.

Little things can mean different things to different people. Personally, as there are so many little things on my list, I thought I should share just a few off the top of my head, in no particular order:

  • Enjoying my morning coffee on the balcony.
  • A sparrow hopping around the sidewalk in the summer.
  • Knowing there is already something in the fridge for dinner.
  • Getting the elevator right away, and all to myself.
  • Being able to write outside instead of working indoors on a beautiful day.
  • Getting into bed at night after the linens have been changed.
  • A fresh bar of soap.
  • Putting on a brand new pair of socks for the first time.
  • The fact that I am lucky enough to have two good legs and feet that give me the freedom to walk.
  • When everyone goes away for a long weekend and our normally crowded city is quiet and peaceful.
  • A really good night’s sleep.
  • Reaching into your pocket and discovering money you didn’t remember putting there.

I could go on and on but you get the idea. The next time you are about to chalk up an entire day as being a complete write-off, don’t forget to take a moment to appreciate what life’s simple pleasures mean to you. After all, a bunch of little things can add up to a whole lot of happiness.☺        

Copyright © by Andrea Freedman 2014