This isn't really my phone. If it were, I would know NOT to answer. We save money by not having caller ID ( we buy treats instead), and in some ways it is good because I tend to not answer the phone anyway if I don't feel like it. That is something about me that is different from my husband. He thinks if the phone rings it is like a knock on the door, and we NEED to get it! The people calling NEED us! I, on the other hand, have more of a laissez-faire approach. I think if they are calling and we're doing something, we shouldn't be interrupted unless we want to be. Plus you can return the phone call later when you feel up to your social best.
Anyway, I digress from the topic I haven't yet introduced: The Golden Rule.
I don't like it when my heart-rate starts rising from its usual 40 bpm to about 80 because I feel like there is someone that wants more from me than I would like to give. SOLICITORS. Door-to-door and phone solicitors alike. I don't like saying no to people, especially face to face. I don't like them getting mad at me because I choose to not embrace their offers! It is not fair that I have to feel bad about being my stiff, abrupt, ornery self with strangers. And the thing is, I am a nice person in the core part of my being. But they only want you to be the YES man or woman or you are a bad seed. It is one-sided and emotionally damaging.
After talking with a solicitor about magazines tonight (I haven't yet taught my kids that we only answer the phone at night when Dad's home) I feel okay. Why? Because I already had that magazine. So I got off lucky. But next time I might really have to say NO to the request for money, or the donation to some charity, or the offer of more features on my phone. And that goes ditto for the door to door people. So how can I work this?
Back to the Golden Rule! Treat others how you'd like to be treated, right? So I need to prep myself for these situations and by knowing I am going to be nice, will take the increased levels of anxiety out of my system. At least that is my hope.
"Mom, (I hate it when they call me that!) buy this cleaning product so you don't waste your money".
Me: (with a real smile, not fake)
"I think you have a great product there and though I'm not going to buy it, I think you'll find lots of success in your work with your great approach". (I will hide the sarcasm successfully of course) Firmly close the door, no excuses in the wind!
"Ma'am, I am just selling home security systems and unless you buy one you will probably be the victims of a home invasion".
"What a great idea. We have a different, highly confidential security system that we've found to be successful so far, but I think next-door neighbor is interested". (I'll try not to lie of course, and no excuses or distractions or offers of pop or ice-cream to them like Russell does to at least make them happy)
So now that I've gotten my plan in place, how will you handle your next solicitor in a reverent, loving way? And should I just offer them a can of pop before shutting them out of my life forever? Is this our one chance to make a good example of ourselves to this person? Pre-destination? Should we offer a Book of Mormon to them in return? Wouldn't that be fair? I guess if it was a sincere, loving gift?