5 ways to deal with twats when you work with the public

Today was rough. I work in a shop and that means that I have to deal with the public ALL DAY LONG. Nine times out of ten they are lovely people that have been brought up well and don’t want to inflict pain and misery onto their fellow humans.

But then there is always that one that seems to be a little bit unhinged and you wonder how they manage to get through the day without killing someone. And today, I came across one of them.

Now, normally I would just brush it off for what it is: a twat who needs to learn to show some basic manners (sorry, I’m not sounding very patient or kind, but it really upsets me when people are horrible for no reason)! But today, I was tired and already feeling sensitive and it just got to me.

I don’t know if anyone wants to hear my woes but my mother has cut my dad, my son and I out of her life and is being really nasty to us and it’s having a really deep impact on my emotional state. I know that it’s my inner child feeling really vulnerable and I could quote a whole load of Freudian psychobabble, but I’ll save it for another day. However, it is what it is and it has cut me deep to feel that my own mother has rejected me.

Anyway, I spent my entire shift feeling like I could hardly breathe because I was feeling so much emotional pain, and then in the last hour this guy comes in. He started shouting at me about the fact that there was no pictures of the meal deal so he didn’t know what “fucking sandwich” he could have. He then threw said sandwich back into the fridge and stalked off.

It then so happened that I had to serve the guy and I got so overwhelmed by his aggression that I had to walk to the back and cry. I completely crumpled and my colleague found me in a ball on the floor, sobbing.

Of course, that led to me spontaneously crying throughout the final hour of my shift and I looked like crap for the whole time. It was horrific and embarrassing and it made me think a little bit about what it was that was going through this guy’s mind and how I could deal with this in the future.

So here are a few things that I think that you can try to hold on to next time you find yourself in a similar situation.

  1. This is the ‘twat’s’ problem, not yours. There is something in his life that has caused him sufficient pain to think that his behaviour is necessary. People who are happy and in no pain do not go around being a dick to the people who are trying to do their job.
  2. You are a nice person, so don’t let this person’s words chip away at that. Hold onto that thought tightly. My problem today was the fact that I let go of that thought and allowed his words to dig themselves deep inside of me. Sometimes people tell you to just ‘grow a thicker skin’ which can sound a bit insensitive, but it’s really important that you do build a defence so that you can protect yourself for your own sanity.
  3. Be assertive. It can sometimes just take a few stern words to put this jerk back in his place. Don’t put yourself in any danger if the person looks like they may be getting violent, but do tell them that their behaviour is unacceptable if you feel it is safe to do so. Half the time, these idiots don’t even know that they’re causing upset; telling them that they are making you feel uncomfortable and you will be calling a manager or even the police if they continue will normally get them to pipe down.
  4. Walk away if it’s getting too much. You don’t have to subject yourself to that if you don’t want to. Again, it’ll send them a strong message that their behaviour is not acceptable.
  5. If you need a little cry or you need to vent afterwards, that’s absolutely fine. I used to bottle it all up and then it would explode further down the line, normally getting me into trouble. It’s far better to have a cry for ten minutes and get it all out right there and then. It’s nothing to be ashamed of and most people will be really understanding. My colleagues today all rallied around to give me a hug and make me a drink while I took a little time out.

I feel your pain if you are faced with one of these idiots. I call them idiots because I’m angry and upset tonight, but deep down I know that that doesn’t make me any better than them. They are hurting people who just need some love. I hope and pray that the man who yelled at me is now out of pain and that somebody has listened to him and shown him some love.

If you have a friend who is acting out like this, make sure that you take the time today to listen to their problems. Show them some understanding and hopefully we can start to make the world a slightly nicer place to live in for everyone.

Much Love,

Rachel xx

Why ending therapy is f**king terrifying

I’m frightened. I’m terrified. And the reason? I’m ending my therapy sessions in just three weeks.

I started therapy when I was newly sober and still really mentally unwell. I was paranoid that my employer was trying to kill me and I even took an overdose and ended up in hospital just a few weeks after commencing my sessions. In short, my life was a bit of a shit show at the time.

Fast forward to almost three years on and I’m still not perfect. Far from it. But I have sat in that room, week after week, and I’ve talked and I’ve been open to learning. I’ve learnt so much about myself and where I was going wrong and where I can improve. And I say ‘improve’ rather than ‘fix’ because I don’t believe that we can ever truly be fixed. Perfection is unattainable and even when I’m ninety I will still be learning so much about myself and my fellow humans.

It has been an interesting journey, to say the least. And I’m nervous about where my life will take me after I leave the ‘care’ of my therapist. It’s the weirdest relationship that I’ve ever had with anyone, both close and distant all at once. I sometimes find myself wondering how I’m ever going to cope with nobody to hold me accountable in the same way.

I thought it might be helpful for myself and for others to just put into writing how therapy has helped me and just what it is that I’m frightened of in a life post therapy.

  • Therapy has taught me that we are all just winging it. In a way this is really terrifying because it means that I can never really find all of the answers. There is no instruction booklet for life and sometimes it’s all about a bit of guess work. Sometimes my decisions will be wrong and I just have to bear the consequences.
  • I’ve opened up to my therapist about some of my deepest and darkest secrets. I wouldn’t even tell my closest friends some of these things so I feel like I’ve let my barriers down in the extreme. Losing that relationship is like breaking up with a romantic partner. That makes me squirm to write, but it’s true, and it’s also a heartbreaking feeling.
  • I’ve discovered that some of my difficulties stem from past traumas and from my relationship with my mother. This has made for some uncomfortable realisations and I don’t know if things can ever go back to the way they were. I can cope with this, but it hurts.
  • I don’t have anyone to hold me accountable anymore. I knew that I had to check in with my therapist every week, and now I have nobody. I have to hold on so tightly to the fact that I have people around me who love me. I may not be able to burden them with all of my worries but they would be devastated if I was gone.
  • I’ve learned that when someone is mean to me, that’s their shit, not mine. People behave badly because they are uncomfortable and not because they hate me or want me arrested or dead. Holding onto this is so hard for me, but it’s essential if I am to stop myself from going down that rabbit hole I found myself in three years ago.
  • I’ve had to change my goals and my values. All I wanted was to be rich and successful because I thought that this would make people love me and respect me. Actually, it just made me bloody miserable. I need to do the things that make me happy, like writing and art and crochet. I don’t have expensive tastes so why the fuck do I need a job that pays me well but stresses me out to the point that I end up in hospital? I rest my case.
  • Just chill out. Life is to be enjoyed. If I die, then I die. But why not enjoy it while I have it?

I’d love to hear if you have had therapy and what you have learned from the experience. I think that it’s so helpful to learn what it is that causes you to behave the way that you do. I truly believe that we are all like little computers and the things that happen to us early on in life program us for the future. It’s fascinating and scary in equal measures!

Much Love,

Rachel xx

Share a blog post: because sharing is caring (plus poem)

Life is all about connecting with others and helping each other through because life is a bit of a challenge. And because this blog is very much about being nice to one another and having a successful life at the same time, I really want to make the most of the connecting power that blogging has. So I want to open this post up to have a little share, giving us all the chance to help each other in this part of our lives.

I’ve seen lots of threads like this on Facebook but I know that a lot of people either aren’t on FB or they don’t want their feed clogged up with lots of group posts. So I’m going to see if it can work on here!

Let’s all give each other a helping hand and visit, like and share each others blog posts. If you would like to get involved pop a link to your post in the comments and write a sentence or two about why you started blogging and what you want to achieve. Only positive and nice things, please, as I don’t want to be spreading hate and nastiness. Then it would be fabulous if you could have a look at other blogs in the comments and share the love. Click like on the posts, share or comment, or maybe even start following someone.

And to get you started I wanted to write what it was that got me started. I wanted to build a community of like minded people who wanted to promote kindness over the nastiness that I see so much of in the world. I also wanted to see the people who have been a bit downtrodden and have taken a few knocks feel uplifted and confident enough to go out and get the success that they deserve. Whether you have had family troubles, addiction issues or mental health problems, you are just of deserving of happiness, confidence and success.

And here’s a poem to encourage a little more sharing:

Sharing’s really rather nice,

And comes at such a tiny price.

It’s just a comment, click or share,

To show how much you really care.

You could make a friend or two,

And even start a freaking crew,

Who’ll have your back when things are tough,

And make you feel like you’re enough!

Becoming a success when you’re just a bit meh

There are so many times in life that I have been brushed off because I’m not ruthless enough. It sometimes feels like you have absolutely no chance of going anywhere if you’re considered too quiet or too sensitive or not as pretty as the other girls. If you’re just described a ‘nice’ it can be bloody hard to rise to the top and I’d really like it to stop. I’d love to be able to join together with other people who have found themselves in the same boat and we can share our experiences and give each other a little boost.

In this video I have a little rant about how angry it makes me that our gifts (which are really valuable) are just discarded and how our soft skills are not appreciated at all. I hope that it resonates with a few people out there and that at least one or two people can join me in my slightly ‘meh’ version of an uprising!

Do I need a mentor and where do I find one?

From a very early age we find our way in life by finding somebody to follow and learn from. Whether that be a teacher or a parent or somebody else, there is always someone that we latch onto and copy. We look to them for help and advice and they stop us from veering way off track. But as an adult it’s much harder to find somebody to help us along. We are also left wondering whether or not it’s even necessary to have a mentor.

In my opinion I think that it’s vital to have someone there to lead us. In business and writing and blogging there are so many complexities that it’s almost impossible to navigate your way to the top without the guidance of at least one person. Even if there are some things that you are fabulous at, there will be elements that you will find harder to get to grips with. For example, you may be a great leader and motivator but rubbish at the numbers side of things. In this case, doesn’t it make sense to look up to people who are great in that area?

Mentors can also become close friends and can offer really great emotional support. Some of the women that I have welcomed into my circle have become great confidants and it’s always nice to have a person to go to if you need a good cry over a cup of coffee.

You do want somebody to guide you who you have a good relationship with, but you also need to have a lot of respect for them because you have to be able to trust their instincts and their advice. You have to be sure that they have your best interest in heart so always be careful who you go putting your undivided trust in.

There are some huge advantages to having a close relationship to your mentor but I don’t think that you should worry if you can’t find someone right off the bat. There are so many mentors to be found through books and youtube videos and other blogs. Read books like Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg to get you pumped up to be a powerful woman in business. Look up to these people who have already carved out a place for themselves at the very top of their fields. You never know when you might be there yourself and others will be reading your words in the hope of finding some divine inspiration!

If you are determined to find actual people who you can interact with personally then it’s all about gaining contacts and the only way to do that is to network. Tell people that you have started a business or blog and connect with others who are doing the same thing. These people who are in the trenches with you are the ones that can support you and promote you and you can do the same for them. You can swap tips and warn each other of potential pitfalls and the bigger your network the more chance you have of speaking to the RIGHT person at the RIGHT time.

So, please consider getting somebody in your life that you can look up to because it will push you on to greater things. Business is not really about selling but about connecting and if you can do that really well you’re going to make it big. Go find those special people, listen to them and then pass it on to someone else who needs help just like you did.