The following examples featured in this post are fictional. Any resemblance to any real people, living or dead is purely coincidental. In the unfortunate case that this relates to you or someone you know, please continue to read and do share…. This is the first feature in a series of #EducatedShade from Co-Founders of GenYnot, Jordan + Jamira. Look out for the next post from your uncertified life coaches that are professionally bout that life.
1. Be Transparent
No matter what type of relationship you’re in, transparency is essential, yet too many humans shy away from being clear about what it is they want. What are your expectations? What are your short-term goals? What are your long term goals? What do you expect to gain from this potential relationship? Maybe you wa
nt dinner at that fancy restaurant you heard has great shrimp and grits, maybe you’re one of those humans that likes adding bullet points to your 3 page resume, or maybe you want to finally use that MBA degree you paid for. Be clear about your expectations, that way, both parties can be held accountable for fulfilling the other’s needs. If you aren’t clear in the beginning, yes it is of common folk behavior to go Solange on someone because your covert goal wasn’t met. No you are not allowed to assume that they know what you want. Assuming is for babies, be a BOSS and be clear about what it is you want at the beginning of the relationship. Be like water my friend.
2. Do Relative Work
As millennials we have the tendency to juggle 1,000,001 tasks because we think that if we have just one more volunteer hour or internship than the next person, that some how makes us more qualified. Truth is…it doesn’t, what you do at that internship or volunteer opportunity makes you qualified, not the number of hours or positions you can add to your five-page resume. So if you are going to force yourself to not have any type of social life, at least do it for something that makes sense and not just to eliminate the empty space on your CV.
3. Give Your Word & Keep It
Life happens. Sometimes it happens fast. Sometimes we get an opportunity that we don’t expect. Sometimes an opportunity that we expected to be fruitful and multiply, ends up being as mediocre as movie theater hotdogs. In the midst of life happening, you must be mindful of your integrity. Your character is all you have. It’s simple to verbally commit to completing a task for someone, but when your lips utter the words “Yes”, “I will”, “I got you” or any other verbal commitments, honor it. This doesn’t mean if you are no longer getting your way you can flake at all costs. Can flaking ever be justified? I’ll be happy to answer that, no. There will be many times that you’ve put in lots of hours, days, and months of work without your goals coming to fruition. Oh well, it’s life. Meditate on the lessons learned and keep it pushing after you’ve followed through on your commitment. This isn’t true for me personally, but sometimes you don’t get what you want. If you do flake, that’s cool too. Just be mindful that people talk about flakes that inspired them to enroll in the more yoga classes. And they won’t say nice things.
4. You Don’t Really Know That Person
Are you one of those people who consistently feel the need to drop names of people you don’t really know? Well if you want to build sustainable relationships with a foundation of trust, then please reevaluate your life– just because you happen to follow someone on Twitter or randomly jumped in front of them in Starbucks, doesn’t make you besties. So please refrain from dropping names to legitimize your work and instead, do something that is noteworthy. Let your work speak for itself.
5. Learn To Say No
Learn to say no and don’t explain yourself. Why are you explaining yourself? It’s ok to say no to an opportunity or a favor without you feeling the need to say “I’m sorry” or “ I wish I could but”, no…stop and stop caring about how people are going to perceive your refusal to do “yet” another favor and more than likely at the risk of your own #selfcare. Hell for all anyone knows, you could be spending the next ten hours catching up on Scandal and no you don’t want to go and volunteer for that community clean up… and that’s ok, just try not to Instagram your couch potato status. Trust I’ve told a number of people to kick rocks…bare-foot but that doesn’t mean I don’t love them any less.