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Interruptions!

“Will I answer that?” I thought.

It had been an extremely busy day.  Our schedule was packed full.  On arriving home around 3.30pm yesterday, I said to Monic that I was going for a walk to get some fresh air, stretch my legs and generally chill for half an hour.  I asked if she wanted to come, but she needed to attend to some other things.

So, off I strode, along to the canal side to enjoy a pleasant stroll and clear my thoughts.

Pausing along the way to enjoy the nature and the windmill, I pulled out my phone to take a picture.

And there it was, the phone was silently ringing, some young missionaries were trying to get a hold of me.  And then came the thought above!

What is it about a ringing phone that compels us to answer it?

I was so enjoying my little walk!

Interruptions!  How do you deal with them?

So, I chose to answer the call.

“Do you have a minute?”  asked the young missionary, “I just have one quick question. I can call you back if it is not a good time?”

Smiling, “on you go” I said.

We spoke for 10 minutes and resolved the immediate matter at hand.  We talked, shared, asked questions, problem solved and above all I listened.

How many times a day do you hear those fateful words?

Frequently, one-minute turns into 10, one question becomes several, and you can end up losing big chunks of your day.  Balancing the need to be accessible and productive is a challenge that we all face at times.

All that said, I enjoyed our conversation.  We resolved a few things together and followed up later with an email to address the main concern.

Interruptions happen, so it’s how you deal with them that matters.  Over the years I have learned to expect them!

Each of us oftentimes face many random factors in our day. They will control you unless you control them. It’s your choice.  And yesterday I chose to take the call, and I am glad I did!

My advice, if you do need to interrupt someone, give them the option of turning you down without appearing rude. For instance, instead of “I just have one quick question,” ask “Is now a good time to talk?