I was recently going through my Instagram direct message in search of an item I had wanted to purchase and its asking price (you know these dm for price people). In my search, I found the message of a friend from as far back as May. This friend had only sent a message to congratulate me for my weekly #womeninspire posts.
Interestingly, it showed that I had read the message but I had not replied. Strangely, I had not read the message. As a matter of fact, I didn’t even notice the message nor its content until that moment, two-and-a-half months later when I was looking for some item.
I replied immediately. I apologised for not having seen the message earlier and responding to it. I was in total guilt. And suddenly it clicked.
How many of us have destroyed relationships just by making ASSUMPTIONS?
This friend of mine had unfollowed me on Instagram couple of months back.(I knew through an app called Xprofile) Oh! That could probably be the reason!
I sent so many messages apologising and then he replied with the words ‘Assumption is the mother of all f**kups’! I couldn’t agree more.
Too many of us fall in this trap of assumption. We assume that because someone is online, our message has been deliberately ignored. We assume that because someone is not picking our calls, they are deliberately avoiding us. We assume that because someone unfollowed us on Instagram, that person hates us! We assume that because someone does not openly share our business fliers and pages, that person is an enemy to our progress! But perhaps, a little patience could put our minds at ease!
As was the case of this friend of mine, he had been upset about something without evidence. Instagram’s ‘seen’ was not enough evidence to conclude that I was ignoring him. I had not even seen it. In fact, I don’t know where my mind was that day, that I opened the message and forgot to read and reply.
I cannot count the number of times people have smiled at me at an event thinking I saw them when I hadn’t. My husband used to argue with me and say, ‘Didn’t you see this person?’ and I replied in the negative. One day, a friend of his called him to accuse him of not seeing him at a function, and then he had to explain himself. I laughed so hard because I knew from that day he understood me better.
As you are going through this life, don’t assume you know it all. Don’t assume people are after you. Don’t assume you are hated. Don’t assume people are deliberately avoiding you. Don’t assume you know what’s going on in people’s heads. Assumption is the Number One destroyer of your God encountered relationships.
What the devil cannot destroy through strife, arguments and misunderstanding, he will do through assumption. He will fill you with all sort of thoughts about the people who are meant to help you, and you will act on your thoughts and drive these very people away.
Unless you have a justified cause to believe that someone is against you, don’t assume. Unless you have heard both sides of the story, don’t assume. Unless you have matched both words and actions to indeed prove a person’s commitment, don’t assume. Assumption is the mother of all evils.
In my line of work, I have encountered so many people that are nicer in person than they are on social media. Some too are the other way round. But I give them the benefit of the doubt. I don’t take things too personal.
Take for instance my weekly #womeninspire features, I don’t inform my subjects prior to writing about them. Sometimes I tag them and other times I don’t. Sometimes the women in question reply with a kind word of appreciation and other times they don’t. I would be wrong to assume that they all see it. They may or may not. Even though I take the pain to write about them, sift information from the internet, download their best pictures and share my audience with them, not all have acknowledged my efforts. But that doesn’t leave me with an assumption of them. Some of them might not even be tech savvy, or it might have just escaped them. Such is life.
It’s amazing how many relationships we have destroyed just by assumptions. If we had had a little patience in dealing with these people, perhaps we could salvage the relationship before it’s too late. Because believe me, it can be too late.
I have personally cut off a lot of friendships not because I hated the people in question but because I was dealing with a personal weakness that I found in them too. Thus, being in their company will only take me further into that habit. That was my personal decision. Imagine if these people, not understanding the need for growth and the basis for dissolution of friendship (on a lighter note), take things too personal and go on to badmouth me to others based on what they thought happened between us, ASSUMING the worst of me. They would have created a bad image for me without me being able to explain myself. Finally, when it’s time to get back with them, I discover that this is what they have gone ahead to spew to others, despite it not being the truth. This makes it even more difficult to connect with them.
Look, ASSUMPTION is EVIL. It doesn’t come from a good place. As you grow, you need to sift out the chaff from the grain. You can’t continue to think the way you do. You have to unlearn and relearn some habits. You need to employ the power of POSITIVE THINKING. Don’t think evil of everyone! Perhaps your haters could be your helpers if only you didn’t assume!
It’s not too late to make a change in attitude! THINK POSITIVE THOUGHTS ABOUT PEOPLE! When in doubt, ASK! Don’t assume! Even if you get a different feedback, do not act upon it without knowing the full details!
It is interesting to note that this friend of mine wants to write a book, and what better way to start than to take inspiration from people like me who already have a book to my name! Imagine how emotionally attached feelings would have gotten in the way! Wheew! Glad we could work things out! Cheers to POSITIVE THINKING, people!