Time to be Rude?

I had an encounter with a rude customer service agent the other day. When I asked her for help, she literally leaned in towards me, pointed her finger at me and said in the most condescending voice, “I’ll deal with you later.”

Gulp.  I am a sensitive person and it doesn’t take much to set me off. I could feel the tears well up in that back of my eyes. I felt like a scolded child.

I slunk back to my seat and when I was done being hurt, I got mad. Who did she think she was to talk to people like that? To make people feel like that?  I wanted to give her a firm talking to.

Instead, I watched her continue with her work, she looked overwhelmed with her workload. When she finally had a lull, I cautiously approached her desk and choose my words very carefully.

“I can tell you are pretty stressed and busy and I’m sure you didn’t mean to be that rude to me.”

“Oh no, I’m so sorry, I didn’t.  I was really rushed and backed up.” she said.

“I know,” I replied, “but I felt really bad and it doesn’t take any longer to be kind than to be rude.”

“You’re right. I’m really sorry, how can I help you?”

What happened here?

Three things:

  1. I saw things from her perspective
  2. I stood up for myself
  3. She took responsibility for her actions.

Everyday, we get an opportunity to walk in someones else’s shoes for a bit. We get to hear someone else’s story, we get to experience life from the ‘other side of the counter.’

It can help us in many ways; to be more compassionate, to be more understanding, to be more forgiving.

We can’t know everyone’s story, but with each one we learn, we have the opportunity to grow.

And remember it doesn’t take any longer to be kind than to be rude.


This week’s CJOB radio show includes my conversations with author Daniel Perron and Corporate Lawyer turned Happiness Coach PaigeHarper Lang.

PaigeHarper shares with us her Happiness Audit and guest blog post here below.

Enjoy the whole podcast here…

What is a Happiness Audit?

It is a Happiness awareness builder and feedback tool that you can use to examine your life, or portions of your life, through the filter of what brings you true joy!

The Happiness Audit worksheets use your Life Pie as the base and overlays the Happiness Pie on top of it, so you can tangibly see how much, or how little, the activities in your day to day contribute to your overall Happiness. This helps you decide how to make changes to both your activities themselves and to the amount of time you allocate to them. The goal?… to maximize your Happy!

Tip #1: Be brutally honest in your self-assessment of your Happiness Rankings – but have compassion for yourself in the process.

Tip #2: You can use other aspects of your life as the base upon which the Happiness Pie would be overlaid. For example, you can create a Relationship Pie or a Work Pie. A Relationship Pie could be either listing the main people/relationships themselves in your life OR focusing on one relationship specifically and then listing the main activities/components of that relationship. A Work Pie could be listing your main work duties and then examining those through the Happiness Pie filter.


Stephanie Staples, CSP* is the author of When Enlightening Strikes – Creating a Mindset for Uncommon Success, an internationally acclaimed motivational speaker, and the recipient of the 2014 Manitoba Woman Entrepreneur Award for Contributions to Community. Stephanie empowers audiences & clients across North America to bring their ‘A’ game to work and to life. Stephanie has a special interest in working with and empowering nurses and healthcare providers. She happily calls Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada home. You can get loads of complimentary resources to help with issues such as work/life balance, wellness, stress management and happiness in general, as well as find out more information about her coaching and speaking services at http://www.YourLifeUnlimited.ca.

* Certified Speaking Professional (CSP), conferred by the National Speakers Association is the speaking profession’s international measure of professional platform proficiency. Less than 10 percent of speakers have earned this credential and are recognized as some of the best in their fields. Stephanie was one of only five professional speakers in Canada (and the only woman) to attain this designation in 2013


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