Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Something To Think About This Wednesday...

When facing a situation with a difficult person, we must remember that people's behaviour is, more often that not, about them... and not about ourselves. We have to learn not to take it personally; when we do take it personally, we involve ourselves in their behaviour and that is when conflict arises.
I am learning very slowly to not take others' negative attitudes or behavours personally... especially working in a customer-oriented position, I am learning to not take things like this to heart, especially when I know that I have done my job to the best of my ability and always maintained that I want to put them first. 
Such as an incident that happened today: we had to call a gentleman and cancel an appointment due to an incident that had taken place on a job site. The timing and the incident, of course, is out of our control; when I worked in catering, we called such things an "Forces of God" that the owner needs to attend to to ensure that his or her employees and clientele are safe.
Anyways, this gentleman saw this as an inconvenience to him. He had left work early on a Friday to meet for this cancellation. Now, I get it; people are busy! People have work and, when they take time off, they lose money and that is certainly upsetting. This gentleman also stated that it would be better for him if I had called at 1pm, instead of calling immediately after the incident was reported at 2:45pm. He then proceeded to tell me that he was "busy like anybody else" and his "time was too valuable to waste" and hung up on me. All the while, I did my job; maintaining that I wanted to find a solution for him, apologetic, but also assuming an air of compassion in hopes that he would return the same to me during an unfortunate, surprise incident.

People put so much value on their time, how stressed they are, and (especially, but of course not limited to) their jobs without realizing that I am also making a livelihood- I am also working and my main source of income and happiness comes from providing the absolute best service that I can give to my clients. The last thing that I would like to happen is to be unhappy in my position; and that can (may also stem from other things - I love my job, by the way! :) ) happen when the company's clients are unhappy. I am the first point of contact, and I do my best to ensure the proper service is met and that I achieve my goal of making whomever I am speaking with satisfied.
Granted, not all customer service individuals are in this attitude... but I would be surprised if not one worker at a company was not committed to providing the best client experience that they can and doing their job right.
We must learn to focus on the positive, and not the negative. If you have not worked as that exact position, then do not assume an arrogant position; you should know that jobs are not easy! Whether you be a stay at home mom or dad, a high-ranking oil executive, a cashier, or even a doctor, you know that having a job is not easy and that you are doing your job to your best ability. Do not place so much value on your time or your day as to think yourself higher than anyone else - if you are not enjoying yourself, do say so, but do not insult the integrity of the worker you are speaking with. It is a finite balance, like everything else in this life, that we live, speak and breathe compassion, understanding and patience. This takes practice! But it must always take precedence.

This is how we breed conflict resolution; a good thing. I am taking this into my life and practicing to do it to the best of my ability. Once you have successful conflict resolution, you become less afraid of conflict- you don't give it value.

My suggestion for this gentleman, if I had been so bold, would be the same logic I try to apply to a traffic jam: you're in a comfortable place with things to do. Yes, it may be a stressful situation, but in the time that you worry, swear, and brew over it, you could have caused your blood pressure to lower; dancing to music, singing to music, talking to yourself (figuring out what the entire list of numbers in the pi equation is, for example). It is all what you make of it, so let's commit ourselves to giving more value to compassion and genuine enjoyment instead of stress and time.

“Beware the barrenness of a busy life.” - Socrates



Tuesday, April 16, 2013

What An Amazing World We Live In

So often we hear people complain about how "stupid" or "soft" children these days are. This kid is a shining beacon of light and he has wisdom way beyond his years!
What an amazing human being!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Daily Dose Of... Buddha

"He who gives himself to vanity, and does not give himself to meditation, forgetting the real aim of life and grasping at pleasure, will in time envy him who has exerted himself in meditation."
(From the Dhammapada)
-The Buddha


A Luxury Once Thought Lost...

I try to consistently remind myself just how good I have it. It's hard sometimes; studying for exams, trying to maintain my diet and lose weight, working on my relationship, complaining about food that I love but can no longer eat... but jeez we have it good! Let's remember this and be thankful that we are fortunate enough to combat allergies, illness, and hunger and let alone know these luxuries!

With that in mind, here is a recipe for a delicious dish that I thought that I would never eat again: a chicken/egg salad sandwich. Now, everyone makes this different, but that's what I love most about them; no two are the same! This is the perfect brown-bag lunch item and I often get as nostalgic eating a chicken or egg salad sandwich as I do eating Sloppy Joe's (that recipe, my friends, to come later this week - stay posted!).

Luxurious Nostalgia: Kath's Chicken and/or Egg Salad Sandwich
(Note: I say and/or as I use egg in the chicken salad- if vegetarian, just omit the chicken)
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 hard-boiled egg whites
2 cups coleslaw mix
1/4 red onion
1/2 red bell pepper
1/4 cup water chestnuts, coarsely chopped (optional - I would add these for crunch)
5 tbsp lite mayonnaise
2 tsp lime juice
dash of Frank's Red Hot sauce
2 tbsp medium salsa
1 1/2 tbsp garlic powder
1 tsp black & white pepper mix
1 tbsp onion powder
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp rosemary 
1 tsp powdered ginger

1 tsp canola oil

Kinnickinnick gluten and dairy free bread, toasted lightly

Heat medium-sized frying pan over medium heat. Add oil and chicken breasts and cook until chicken breasts are cooked through. While chicken is cooking, boil water and hard-boil eggs.
Once chicken is cooked, remove from pan and place on flat surface for shredding. Using two forks, shred chicken breasts and set aside.
Once eggs are hard-boiled, remove yolks and thinly slice egg whites. Set aside.
In large mixing bowl, pour in coleslaw mix. Add vegetables, chicken, and eggs and mix thoroughly. In smaller bowl, combine mayo, lime juice, hot sauce, salsa and spices and mix thoroughly.
Combine mayo mixture with coleslaw mixture and use salad forks to toss generously, until mayo mixture has thoroughly, and evenly, coated all of coleslaw mixture.
Toast bread and spread chicken salad on top. Sandwich between two pieces and eat!
So amazing- enjoy!