If you had to choose between instant coffee and real ground coffee, which one is best? (ground or Turkish, filter, expresso, any that’s made) If you had to choose between instant soup and home made kind? Why are the specialized products, like a shampoo or a conditioner for a specific type of hair better than the ones that are 2 in 1? Why the best results we get from products that don’t promise too much but focus on a clear purpose?
I don’t deny the use of the instant result products. A good instant coffee for example, in a trail trip is excellent. Those products that I use at the races, like a very weird pasta for ultras, small packed but really has a taste of tomato and bits of dough in, very handy and fast to digest. Yes, that’s true they can be the right thing to need at the time, but most people if they had to choose a meal, they would go for home cooked, it’s better, more soothing.
So why do we try to have superficial instant relationships? Are we that busy that we don’t want to build proper connection? Do we think that all should come easy with little effort? In my experience, whenever I wanted to build something great, I had to put a lot of effort into. Whenever I wanted something that was worth it, I put a lot of energy into and worked hard to get it. I didn’t expect someone else to do the job for me, I didn’t expect others to fill in the missing pieces. Same in work. We want the accolades, the bonuses and raises but we don’t want to go the extra mile. You don’t need to exhaust yourself or sacrifice anything. But if you don’t put your heart and soul…
To put it in sports words, my sport way I mean. You won’t finish a marathon or an ultra without training. You might get a 10k done, I’ve seen it. People crash after, if they don’t train and have sour muscles for 2 weeks. I feel a little discomfort for a few days after a marathon and the third day after I usually slowly start training again. The idea is, I put months of effort to get to my race. And with luck, if no injuries occur, the next day nobody knows I did a marathon just by looking at me. Or maybe they do cause I wear my medal . But they won’t see it by the way I walk. The point is, it’s not always about the end result, that’s just the crowning moment. I am mostly proud of every day that I am not in the mood to go out and run, yet I do because I am confident in myself and I push my self. I am also aware that I won’t be able to finish the marathon in one piece by skipping the steps in between.
So why do we do that with friends? Why do we expect people to be nice to us and that we have the right connection when we don’t do the whole effort? Why do we have such high expectation when we don’t bother for it? We want instant relations, that’s what we get. A scratched on the surface connection.
I prefer quality in everything. When I see the ball is dropped on the other end, I drop completely. I am not saying that we don’t have moments when we talk or do stuff together more and some less. I am an introvert in the end, I need my space. But from that to just saying a few words with no beginning, no end. When we expect the other to just accept that we are “too busy” or “doing this or that” and can’t take 2 min to write something that’s thoughtful, say hello and ask how the other one is, in this case I’d say better nothing than this. I don’t mind short messages, but when you drop a “you too”, just leave it. Don’t write at all.
When you don’t make time for a person, because you have 10 other things on your list, you will drop down the other person’s list too. And eventually it will die down. If you constantly choose something and someone else, it’s obvious that the person is not important. It is obvious that you don’t need or want that person in your life. You don’t have to say it with words, your actions speak for you. On the other hand, if you act as if everything is a crisis in your life, you won’t get far either. If you only react when the things get to an ugly point, it will not work out. I am not saying there are no crises, real ones. I had my fair share of that too. But if you build trust with someone, you won’t even have to say it, they will automatically understand. They will support you no matter what.
In 7 habits of Highly effective people, it talks about the emotional bank account as a metaphor. If you keep investing in it, when it’s time to withdraw something (aka when you do something bad or drop the ball a bit), there will be enough in that account that it will not dry your relationship completely. On the other hand, if we keep taking and not putting anything in, it will eventually get to 0 or even worse, you will be in “debt”.
In a fast paced world, with a lot of instant everything, in a world where all we do is hurry from one place to another. In a time when we plan everything ahead and schedule our friends, we loose what is most important. We loose our connection to ourselves and with others. Take a step back, analyse what you do and how you do. Check yourself, stop having excuses and explanations why you don’t have time and make time. Make time to enjoy the snow outside. Make time to breath deeply. Make time to write a nice “good morning” message. Make time to tell the people that matter, exactly that. Make time to connect, make time for quality relationships and you will get it. The people that would jump through hoops for us are not rare because people are selfish and distant. They are rare because not that many would jump for someone who doesn’t show interest in us, who doesn’t show the love they say they carry.
Time is fleeing and is precious. Use it wisely. Use it on what is truly important and leave the rest. Show people you love them and care today. You might not have a tomorrow.