Sunday, May 12, 2013

Be Friendly When Offended

A new friend of mine in community volunteer group shared this message in its regular meeting. This gentleman and his family live in a large apartment complex. The apartment management designated the residences their parking spots. They also prohibited their parking in other spots and visitor parking in the complex. He explained that some parking allocated were not favorable, and there is a group of people who park in the places they want. The apartment management did not impose their position to these people. These unreasonable people some times took John's parking spot. They believe his parking spot is theirs. He just ignored them and parked his car whenever it is available. One day, he drove back from his work and found his parking space was available. He parked his car there. It was after 2 weeks since the last time when he could park his car in his own place, unbelievably.

When he returned back to his car the next morning, there were 3 men standing. They all were strong built. They also looked angry and ready for even fight. He frowned from a distance, but he kept smiling and approached his car. Before these people said something, he had greeted to them. "Good morning, gentlemen! My name is John. How are you doing today?" Because my friend greeted them with his name, they needed to greet back to him with their names. My friend John did not ask them what they wanted, but he explained that he had been living in the apartment for almost 5 years. He continued to tell them that the parking spots provided by the apartment management is totally not convenient. They needed to agree with him.

He did not forget to keep smiling during he was communicating with them. He told to the people attended the meeting that he tried not to be offending. John talked with them about how lousy the apartment management had been. He told them he had needed to endure. He did not forget to ask them to agree with him on the issues he raised. Since my friend was talking about the issues these people wanted to tell him, they lost the motivation to talk with him. In addition, John was friendly and smiling all the time, they also lost reason to be offending against him.

Finally, he turned to his wristwatch and told them he needed to go since he was almost late for his work. Nobody could stop him to go. After that day, Everybody respected his parking spot and nobody took his space any more.

What he did was same as what martial art masters would do. They say they can win without fighting. He won the fight without fighting. The people who wanted to fight could not win his amicable manner. Furthermore, he could accomplish his intention to secure his own parking space. The lesson is: "Do not be offended. Be friendly to your offenders." Does it make sense?

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