We aren’t always game for business talk. But it is hard to set a boundary between private and business time if you are unclear on the boundary you are setting. For those fuzzy areas, where you don’t want to set a rule, but you feel like a boundary...
We aren’t always game for business talk. But it is hard to set a boundary between private and business time if you are unclear on the boundary you are setting. For those fuzzy areas, where you don’t want to set a rule, but you feel like a boundary has been breached, we have some ideas.
Why is that important for business?
There is a very blurred line between business and personal for most people. Each world can easily bleed into the other, and many people want just that. But sometimes, you wish you could create a rule, or boundary, just for today, like a temporary profile picture on Facebook, and not have it stick for every situation thereafter.
Sometimes boundaries are grey and ill-defined, and when we can’t even codify our own rules about when to talk business and when not to, we can’t expect others to follow these non-codified (or expressed) rules. It is hard to set a boundary if you aren’t clear on the boundary you’re setting.
Often, this need for a temporary boundary is an indication that we are feeling depleted and in need of sleep or rest. In these times, when you’ve got nothing more to give and need a little space, we have to be careful not to set a precedent that we don’t actually want. The best way to do that is to address the specific case: “I would love to talk to you about this, but you are not going to get my best neurons today. Can we talk about this Monday when I can give you my full attention?”
Instead of judging what others’ rules for business talk in a personal space should be, it is a far more useful skillset to know and communicate your own. Expecting others to know your nuanced rules for their behaviour is unfair, especially when you don’t know them. Plus, it means you have to learn their subtle rules. As we get to know people, of course we can construct our own Care and Feeding manual (https://soheresmystory.com/ep60-care-and-feeding/) for their particular wants and needs, but we can’t expect everyone to know our wants in every moment. The more any of us can learn to read other people’s social cues, the better. And, no matter what, there will always be people who don’t read social cues.
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