Maybe It’s Not About You (Maybe He Ate an Entire Chicken)

Last Friday I returned home from my month-long work travels, and longing to reconnect with my fur-covered chum, only to be desperately disappointed when he brushed past me and spent the afternoon lying in the yard.

Of course, I blamed myself, and my schedule. What other reason could there be?

Then my phone rang and my beloved friend, Geoffrey, who had been acting as his guardian angel in my absence, said, “So, I have something to tell you….”

It seems earlier that day Seymour had managed to tip over the garbage, rip off the lid, and eat an entire roasted chicken carcass—every last scrap and bone.

Oh, so that’s why he was lying in the yard like a cobra that swallowed a cow.

Why do I tell you this?

I tell you this because it’s important to remember that you may not necessarily have triggered for your boss’s/colleague’s/friend’s preoccupation/abstraction/mental indigestion.

It’s possible they are just digesting something that occurred earlier that day.

So before you begin berating yourself, take a moment, do some additional observation, ask a few (non-invasive, open-ended) questions (“How’s it going?”, “Is there anything you need from me?, etc.)

Because sometimes it’s not about you.

Frances Cole Jones