I didn’t always think I was such an introvert… But since working for myself, freelancing sans bra on the couch most days, I have come to CHERISH the silence of solo work. And my introverted ways have come bubbling to the surface.
One way my introversion manifests is in never answering the phone. I used to think this was solely a control thing for me — but I think it’s more than that.
I had an exchange with a potential client this weekend for a project sounded like a LOT of fun — something totally different than what I typically work on. But I had to turn the work down because he was not respecting my boundaries. After setting an appointment for Tuesday morning, he left me a voicemail and then emailed me the following day and ALL CAPS REQUESTED that I CALL HIM on a Friday afternoon without giving any sort of reason. I emailed him to tell him that I would call him on Tuesday morning at our scheduled time. Then he called again this morning at 9am to let me know that he had some things come up and wouldn’t be able to make our appointment and, could I make time for him today instead.
I… I had barely poured my first cup of coffee and he’s asking me — before we have even spoken — to rearrange my day because his schedule has changed…?
No. The answer is no.
It’s timely because I just spoke last week on Brown Bag Business Chat about boundaries — why it’s important to have them and why it’s even more important to maintain them.
Watch it here (it’s 30 minutes, seriously, you’ve got time):
And seriously, check out that still frame. Thanks YouTube.
So… Here are ten reasons why I am not answering my phone:
- I am actively working on another client’s work right meow
- I am taking some necessary downtime after having spent hours, perhaps, deep in some complicated code
- I think I probably need to poop soon
- My ringer is off
- I’m actually talking to/spending time with/engaging my child, husband, friend, client, self.
- I don’t have your number programmed into my phone, so I don’t know who you are
- I have your number programmed into my phone and, since I know who you are, I’m intentionally not answering
- I’m defining my own boundaries around our directly-connecting phone relationship
- I know you’re going to email me in a minute anyway and, when you email requests or questions, I can keep track of them better and provide you better service
- I don’t want to talk to you right now — this doesn’t mean I never want to, just not right now