I would never describe myself as a complainer…I like to just get on with things. The way my brain operates is often justified (or excused) by the question of “is my time worth this?”. And to be honest, sometimes I use this as an excuse for deleting the task off my To Do List.
So essentially pure laziness…which often rears it’s detrimental head when I overloaded and overwhelmed.
However recently I went to New Zealand for a nice weekend away. I actually needed to get a lot of work done, but was struggling to concentrate in Sydney. So the idea of a fresh location was just what I needed…and just what worked.
In the planning and preparing of my trip, I set up global roaming on my mobile so that I could still stay connected. And took out a travel pack to get me the right coverage for my time away. I happily went about my business, used wifi when possible and made a conscious point to try and be present with Tom and not to use my phone too much. However to my shock, on the last day, (literally was I was embarking the plane to fly back to Sydney) I found that I had gone over my allowed amount and incurred an extra $250 in additional charges.
After procrastinating for a few weeks, (yes, really procrastinating) I finally called my mobile phone provider, explained my situation, pointed out the late communication in that I had gone over my limit and that I was a loyal customer for over 10 years. I was expecting to be given a lecture that it was my bad luck, I should have been more careful, that they disclosed the caps and charges and that they can’t help that there was a delay in the text message to warn me…I had my guard up ready to argue.
However the customer service person was calm, listened to me, explained the logistics of international roaming and then wiped my bill. Yes, the whole amount. The full $250. I was in shock, and then impressed. And the relieved, and then annoyed at myself that I actually almost “couldn’t be bothered” to deal with this problem and was ready to just pay the bill and be done with the problem.
Instead I saved $250…
This has made wake up and realise that we have a right to say something (calmly and politely of course) if we aren’t happy with our service providers. This “not worth my time” attitude (and yes, now that I have snapped out of my laziness or somewhat arrogance, $250 is most definitely worth my time), by rolling over and paying the bill helps no one is their growth and improvement in life…humans and businesses.
So if something is bugging you, and you don’t think it is fair or good value, I encourage you to see what can be done about it. Sure, nothing may happen, but at the very least, by having that simple conversation where you communicate and give feedback, you plant a valuable seed of improvement and sometimes even understanding and perspective. These can then grow from this point organically on their now, which then benefits more people beyond our own circumstances.
So next time you ask yourself “is my time worth this” be honest with yourself and check that you aren’t using this as an excuse to be lazy, and show some self respect to your sense of self worth as well as the value that the other person may receive in your constructive communication. And of course, always listen with open ears as there is always a lesson there for ourselves.