Let me explain.
There are people you meet up with every so often and have conversations. They say something, you say something, you drink tea. You have discussions about ideas. There is flow back and forth. When you leave, it feels good for both of you, in a way you have achieved something for the day because you were able to talk about something important to you and listen to the other person talk about something important to them and help each other as best as you can. This is a Sharing Time.
Time Consumers are different. They will harass you to come and listen to them moan on and on about their dramas. Mostly, their dramas will be the same sort every time. This will happen on a regular basis and only when it is convenient for them. They shove their dramas onto you as they consume the time you could be spending on doing something more productive and makes you happy, but no, they want to talk. And boy do they talk. As soon as you say something that they don’t agree to, they will cut you off, or if you try to express yourself and turn this into a Sharing Time, they will give you that “don’t be stupid, your problems are insignificant to mine” look and turn the talk back to them.
They talk at you.
They don’t realise how their negativity is not only un-healthy for themselves, but for the people they push it onto. All they want is the real worth of your time. They don’t care about the consequences to you. The problem is, what you think will be an hour or two, turns into a whole day gone.
It is not a bad thing to tell the Consumer “no”.
This doesn’t mean you love these people any less or don’t want to help them. This means you don’t have the time for them to consume regularly.
Your responsibility is only to yourself because only you can make sure you are happy in life. The Consumer may say they want you to be happy, but they don’t really care as long as you’re giving them the time to consume.
Putting yourself first isn’t selfish, it is practical. Only you can ensure your happiness and wellbeing comes first. When it comes to time, you have responsibilities; a job, family, study, your passions. If any of these are being sacrificed for someone else, then there is a problem.
If at a point you groan when you look at your phone and see who has messaged you because you know that you’re going to lose time, then you know what I’m talking about. Their drama is like a wave and you can either be swallowed by it and drown, or learn to disengage from it and leave that drama with that person when you walk away.
It isn’t an excuse I use when I tell people I’m writing and can’t meet up for a chat, it’s the truth, and I am not apologetic anymore. This is my passion and I am not giving up the time for something that makes me happy to go and listen to someone’s drama. Simple as that.
So, are you going to consume or are you going to share? Because I would like a cup of tea.