While faced with a rather large amount of work to do and really no strong motivation to get it done, I decided to take my laptop with me while I grabbed a coffee. The logic was simple, if I could get a table in a relatively quiet corner, I’d attempt to get to the work. It such a spot could not be had, my laptop and coffee would make the trip back home and I’d just have to plop myself into my den and get on with the working.
Thankfully I was able to settle into a nice corner with a vat of coffee, okay not really a vat, but a very large cup of coffee. I set about getting on with the work that needed to be done while enjoying my coffee and letting the quiet noise act as very gentle background noise. And work got done. Not all of it, not when there were distractions to be had. Such as careless words tossed around and even more immature reactions to those careless words.
A couple of women had found a spot near me after I had been there for a half hour or so. One was talking about how she was ready to make some big, life altering changes. The other woman was trying to support her, but at the same time was pointing out some of what the first woman was saying happened to contradicting other things she had said. The first woman said something about needing space to make her changes and the other woman said that sometimes the changes that need to be made do not require physical space, instead they require emotional space. The first woman went back to needing to have her space, physically while at the same time insisting that the second woman be there to support her.
At some point, I had stopped listening to the back and forth of this stuff, the second woman said something about how this was the stuff of books. The first woman became very quiet and got up, heading to the washroom. When she returned the second woman apologized if she had somehow upset the first woman. And then all heck broke loose.
The first woman went on a tirade about how the second woman was supposed to support her, encourage her, protect her and such and yet by choosing to use the phrase “stuff of books” the second woman had proven she wasn’t going to do any of those things for the other woman. After that, the first woman stomped out of the coffee shop. The second woman finished her drink and left quietly.
And I stopped working altogether. I had been curious about what exactly the first woman had been trying to change in her life and equally curious bout how the second woman was supposed to do all these things for the first woman. Was there a contract? Did these two women not realize that I needed to know the rest?
After a few hours, when I was back home, I finished the work that needed doing and realized decided that because nothing happens in a vacuum, the changes one person makes will have repercussions that aren’t always easy to foresee. And sometimes to make a major leap you need to let go of the safety rope and all those people who keep things safe. Sometimes you need to just jump and see where it takes you. Some people find this easier to do than others. And it seems the ones who struggle the most with this are the ones who end up making the most rules around things.