I had coffee with a friend the other day & this friend can be a little cranky from time to time & I was concerned that our coffee gathering was going to be “one of those times.” I didn’t feel like I could cancel the coffee date but I was kind of jittery about what path the conversation would take. So I thought about some different strategies I could use for this potentially volatile coffee time & here were some of my thoughts:
- I could endeavor to keep the conversation shallow & discuss the weather, sports & all things surfacy. I decided against this option because she would know that I was being disengenuous.
- I could arrive late & have to leave early before anything dicey could come up – again, that would be disengenuous
- I could just brace myself for whatever might be said & keep a tough shell so that nothing she could say would zing me. With this option, I would guard myself from being totally present in the conversation
- I could pre-forgive her – making the decision ahead of time to forgive her no matter what she might say, regardless of if she was trying to be intentionally hurtful or not. I decided for this option 🙂
So here was the outcome – our coffee time went well, we had a great conversation & there was nothing too zing-y that I had to work through & forgive. I liked the pre-forgiveness strategy so much that I decided to share it with you & use it again in other situations that have any hurtful potetial 🙂