21 thoughts on “Live In-Between Right and Wrong – By Kathryn Eriksen

  1. Thank you for this amazing post. What power we have at hand when we choose to cool down instead of heat up! I would love to re-post this in my blog, luluopolis.wordpress.com. My own goal in my blog is to be positive, find better ways to improve (with imperfect me at the top of the list), and ways to get calm and stay that way.

    This was inspiring!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your comments. It is the gentle reminder that we really do have a choice in each moment that saves me every time. After I choose peace instead of being right, I find that the next moment flows gracefully and smoothly into the next. Cheers to you!


  2. This post is a good treatment of how the individual can deal with their emotional response. Well done.

    It is my experience that from a business perspective, customers or clients react emotionally when they feel that they and their complaints are not taken seriously or have no value to the organization. Once this atmosphere of perceived disregard and neglect is established, then the first time the customer is dissatisfied, for whatever reason real or otherwise, they react emotionally and negatively with the assumption the business does not care about their concerns.

    Winning back a customer’s trust after they feel they have been slighted, is a difficult task. It is far simpler and better for business to make sure no customer feels that way in the first place. Hence a lot of businesses engage in “Customer Relationship Management” or CRM.

    The truth is that from the top, many large businesses truly do not care about their customers other than as a continuing source of revenue. They establish CRM and train employees at the customer interface to make the customers think they care. When you really ponder it, who wants their relationship “managed”? The implication being that customers are being “handled” and their needs really are not important – just their relationship.

    All that said, you are right, it is important that individuals stop and think before reacting emotionally, for purposes of maintaining peace of mind. However, it can feel very satisfying to identify why you are reacting emotionally and then focusing your righteous anger on the problem with the business that precipitated the response. Truly, it is an honest and real reaction to the business and their products and/or services and what better way to get changes made than to react emotionally and negatively to their procedures. As long as you use your emotions as a tool to drive change rather than letting your emotions use you, then it can be quite satisfying. 😀


    1. Well said! Your last sentence says it all – emotions are a tool, not who you are. The only person you can “manage” is yourself. When you are clear and focused in the situation, change is inevitable. And your peace remains undisturbed!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Such a great post. I see more angry rants all the time. The quick, unthoughtful reactions are not well received, and garner no sympathy from bystanders. When they storm out, fussing and fuming, everyone laughs. Food for thought. ☺


    1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. The public rants seem to happen more frequently, don’t they? When you allow your emotions to control your behavior, everyone watching knows exactly what is happening. Next time you see someone lose it, try to send thoughts of loving support their way (and to the person standing behind the counter who is taking the brunt of the rant!)

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I have worked in customer services, taking inbound telephone calls, for finance houses and a certain well-known online retailer, who shall remain nameless, but just think of female warriors, or a large South-American river.

    Everyone in any cutomer-facing role has their own technique of dealing with it. Mine is first of all let the customer have their rant, let them let of steam, don’t interrupt them but give verbal nods – “Uh, huh.”, “Hmmm.”, “Oh yes.” All the time they are ranting, listen carefully and take notes – in the vast majority they have a genuine grievance that has upset them. If that were not the case, they would not be angry. And it’s only if you listen and understand the situation that you can solve it. So, once the customer has ranted, and made themselves heard, I say something along the lines of “I am really sorry you’ve had that problem, now let me see what I can do to put that right for you.”

    Notice the language there: “me”, “I” – take ownership of the problem. By doing so you establish a personal relationship with the customer instead of them thinking they are speaking to a faceless nonentity speaking solely for the company.

    Taking that sort of attitude and endeavouring to do your best for the customer works wonders. I once had a customer in tears because her Christmas order had not arrived. By thinking outside of the box, to make sure she got a delivery, and empathising with the customer, I had her laughing by the end of the call.

    Of course, you will at times get the person who is determined to complain, no matter what. The answer then is to remain civil and polite at all times. Explain to them you have done your best for them, and if they are still not happy, advised them that they can make an official complaint to the company, or an official body. Offer to lodge that complaint for them, or supply them with contact details for the body concerned, all the time remainng sympathetic.

    Then there is the serial complainer; most of these have been given financial compensation at some point, and are chancing their hand for more. My usual trick with these characters is to say “Well, I see you’ve already been compensated, and I’m not the sort of person to throw money at a problem, frankly I think it would be insulting to you to do so, so let’s see if there is some other way I can sort it for you.” You’ll be amazed how many do not wish to take it any further once they realise they’re not getting another handout.

    Then there is the person who is abusive for the sake of being abusive, nobody needs to or should put up with that (it’s actually a criminal offence to verbally abuse someone in their work here in Scotland). Don’t lose your temper with them, remain sympathetic but firm, explain that you are not there to be abused and if they continue, they will not be served any further (in call centres, it’s two warnings, and if they continue, end call or pass to a supervisor).

    I well recall a very well dressed but arrongant fool coming into a bar I frequent once, who had his cellphone up to his ear with one hand, and was snapping his fingers at a barmaid with the other hand. The barmaid, who is very professional, said “I’m busy just now, but I’ll get to you soon sir, if you’ll just be patient.”
    Said fool exploded at her. “Don’t talk to me like that. You’re just a barmaid, so just do your f*****g work, barmaid.”
    The barmaid replied, “Oh well sir, if you think I’m so lowly, you won’t want me serving you.” and walked off.
    The rest of the bar staff overheard the conversation, and likewise passed by the idiot as he continued to try to be served. Word got to the manager, who came out of the cellar, had Mr Arrongant pointed out to him, and approached him.
    “I am the manager,” he said, “I believe sir has a problem?”
    “Yes, I bloody well have,” he snapped, obviously not having learned his lesson, “I don’t know who your bar staff think who they are but I’ve been standing here more than half an hour and not one of them will serve me, after I told off your barmaid for attempting to talk down to me.”
    “And therein lies the problem, sir,” replied the manager – politely, “with your attitude. I will tell you who they are. They are my staff, and if you think them below you, you must think the same of myself and my bar. I therefore suggest that sir finds another establishment more suited to him, because sir most certainly will not be getting served in here, today, or at any other time. Good day sir.”
    Barred – on the spot. You should have heard the laughter and applause from the regular customers as Mr Arrogant walked sheepishly and red-faced out of the door.

    And just to finish it off, the manager then phoned round three nearby bars, described the guy, and related the story to them.

    Liked by 1 person

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