• Mark Ricktor

A Reluctant Morning Person

If you read my “meet me” page on my website (https://warrior2lifecoaching.com/meet-me/), then you know that I left the U.S. Army as a single father back in 1998. Among the other life lessons (we will call them) I received from the military is one that both benefit and plagues me – always being on time (I mean like you tell me to be there at 5 pm you better mean 5 pm because that is when I am knocking on your door). Being on time is a cornerstone of military life – for obvious reasons. In fact – I remember having this statement driving into my head – “If you are told to be there at 5 pm and you arrive at 5:01 pm – Guess what?!!!!! You’re late, scumbag!! They always add words like scumbag when they are making a SERIOUS point.

So the part of this that is a hindrance is when I started dating (this was years and years ago), and we decided what time I would arrive for our date to her house, let’s continue with 5 pm, I would arrive at 5 pm. Now arriving on time is not a conspiracy on my part. It is just second nature to me. So imagine my confusion when I rang the doorbell at 5 pm sharp! My heart skipped a beat or two as I was really looking forward to spending time with her. I could hear her approaching the door, I noticed that I could hear the sound of her walking on the floor – very deliberately. I thought cool she is looking forward to this as well! She unlocked the door, opened it, poked her head outside and very calmly but directly asked me what the hell I was doing there?! My heart sank as I thought – crap I got the day wrong, or worse – crap she changed her mind and did not want to see me – the list of possibilities goes on and on…BUT did not include what she actually said to me- she said, “If this is going to work, you have to realize that when I say 5 pm, I really mean 5:30 pm.

Interestingly enough, this does not work both ways. Meaning as the relationship progressed, and it came time for her to arrive at 5 pm, she arrived at 5:30 pm. I thought, naively, to myself – NOW I can teach her a lesson about the importance of being on time. SO in the same tone of voice, I gently explained (I mean I am not wholly crazy) that when I say 5 pm that I really mean 5 pm. I even explained why it was that way for me…She laughed, hugged and kissed me, looked me in the eyes and said, “good luck with that one”! 

So if there is a point to make here…Actually, I can see several. First – enforce your need to be on time (or not) at your own peril. Second – be flexible in the rules you set for your life (guys see point number one), Third (and maybe most important) do not take life so seriously. Embrace life’s and your own imperfections. You are marvelous as you are! 

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Warrior2Life Coaching

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