Sunday, January 6, 2013

The Auditory Effect

Flying to Phoenix via San Francisco we missed our connecting flight. You know that choice point we are often faced with... get verklempt, contracted and upset or open to the possibilities in a new albeit unforeseen event trusting the universe has another adventure in store for us.

Well come on, it's Buns and Marty. You know what we chose.

We linked arms with a fellow traveller named Guy and as he maneuvered our entry into the first class lounge we made the moment of connection more important than stressing about the future. Here is the thing about aligning with expansive choices, they ripple out and generate more of themselves.

Three hours sped by as we enjoyed ourselves, setting our kids up for romance and planning their fantasy wedding. My son and Guy's  daughter sounded like a perfect match and as selfish yentas, we figured it would be fun to be in-laws.

Yes, it's all about us!
So there we were, bubbling in a soup of transparent sharing, feeling great and revelling in mutual discovery. Fun!

My initial connection with Guy was sparked by a recognition of being kindred spirits around our perspective on the service industry. My parents were in the restaurant business and I was raised with a 'customer is always right' attitude.  I received complaints and no matter how unfair or unmerited would proceed to make things better, with a smile.

So now when I am paying for a service and it is not up to par, I speak up. If I am met with attitude, defense, or lack of response I up the ante and ask to speak to a supervisor. Guy understood this and shared the same sentiment. Not everyone does and some people get downright uncomfortable when faced with this kind of assertiveness.

Yet when Buns shared that she too at times felt uncomfortable I decided to challenge myself with a little experiment. I call it The Auditory Effect. I decided that I would still speak up when service was not quite right but with a conscious commitment to a tone of sweetness and wrapped in a softer, friendlier package.

I had lots of opportunities to practice over the following days... no washcloths in the bathroom, no shower caps, poor lighting in the makeup mirror and runny egg whites with room service. Lots of reasons to complain and yet I stayed true to the concept of  having fun with this.  I would still say what I normally would but now it was sandwiched with a "hi, how are you doing" and some silliness and good humor.

I really got to experience people more clearly this way, validate them and let them know that I believed in their ability to make things right. I oozed gratitude and laughed often. So did Buns and soon we would both be in stitches as I played with my new tonal Pollyanna. And... I got everything I wanted and more. People went out of their way to accommodate and those that started cranky got turned around and became far more pleasant.

This one is a keeper.  I am going to take this auditory effect to mastery and soon my new habit  will become my new normal. I am not being fake either. I am finding the sugar in my essence and deciding to lead with it. It's like chocolate, almost everyone responds well to it.

How sweet it is being sweet in Phoenix!

Branded by evolution,

Authentically Yours,

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