Have you ever found yourself explaining why you can’t make a meeting or coming up with an excuse to reschedule something? Do you then feel guilty for changing plans? We all fall victim to this at some point or another.
Today I am proud to say that I cancelled a meeting. It was not dyer or anything that could not be rescheduled. I gave plenty of notice, but offered no explanation. I simply had other things I wanted to get done and to be honest I did not want to leave the house because it is a nasty rainy day.
I have a tendency to make up a reason for why I cannot be somewhere, but today I did not. I did not say anything except that I needed to reschedule. The crazy part is I feel better than I usually do when I give some kind of excuse or reason, valid or not.
Many times we feel we have to share with people why we have to change plans, but the reality is that it doesn’t matter. What generally matters is that you give them enough notice and do not make a habit of it. If they choose to be annoyed or angry for a lack of explanation then that is their burden to bare, not yours.
For people like me who always call people back and always reply to messages right away, this can be a really hard concept to grasp. The thought of not letting someone know your intentions, even if they are a lie that make you sound good, is terrifying. It is scary because we fear judgement. So we would rather lie and sound like we have a good reason to cancel a meeting than just cancel and let the other person make a judgement about us.
However, it does not matter. You can have the most valid reason, truly, for cancelling with someone and they still might think your a jerk or flaky. So, why waste your energy? Why offer any explanation?
You cannot control what people think about you. You also cannot predict what people think about you, so do not try. You will only stress yourself out and make yourself feel bad. You are allowed to reschedule (remember all things in moderation..), you are allowed to take care of yourself first. So, the next time you are compelled to cancel a meeting or something similar remember, there is no explanation needed.