Monday, January 04, 2010

Assume or Communicate

I'm no mind reader. So why do I expect others to be? I say I'm a communicator, but I'm finding out just how poorly I communicate when it comes to what others should just KNOW. I assume way too much!

For example, the day before Christmas I had plans to get the house and meal ready for our company on Christmas Day. I had the entire day planned out to the hour. Did I communicate that with Russ? No...I forgot that important step. How was he to know? He doesn't read my lengthy lists. He doesn't read my mind. So, he guessed on how he could best help me, and he came close--but not quite.

So, on Christmas Eve day, he tore into the house to completely redo two rooms. Probably the best gift I received this Christmas. But it wasn't on my agenda to do that day. What if the project was too big and wasn't completed by the time our guests walked in 24 hours later? What if he needed my help and it kept me from doing what had to be done to get the meal ready? All of those "what ifs" could have been avoided if early on I had asked Russ what he wanted to do that day, and if I would have told him what I thought my plans might be. Ended up well (really well, in fact!). I hope to share photos of my office soon. But the day was completely rearranged all because I assumed.

New Year's Eve delivered yet another break in communication--this time with my pharmacy. I needed a refill of an anti-seizure medication that isn't supposed to be stopped cold turkey or the body goes through withdrawals. I didn't realize it, but this medication (Lyrica) is a controlled substance. Even though I had one refill left on my prescription, and even though the prescription was ordered the middle of 2009, six months later it was no longer valid due to being a controlled substance. No problem--I had a back-up prescription previously faxed to the pharmacy from my doctor for all my meds. Pharmacist looked it up--he found the fax with every medication listed EXCEPT the Lyrica. I was out of luck. The doctor was gone for the rest of the week--a holiday.

I assumed the refill was valid. I assumed the fax was there on back up. What did I get for my assumptions? A great big dose of withdrawals--something I wouldn't wish on anyone. Now I know in order to properly communicate I need to be sure of something rather than just assume it took place (like confirming the fax from the doctor included all of my meds).

So, today I start the new year, HOPING the doctor is in the office, HOPING the prescription gets ordered soon, HOPING I reverse these withdrawal symptoms quickly. But, I'm not just getting a dose of Lyrica today, I'm getting a dose of reality.

This gal who says she's a communicator, who owns a communications firm, needs to communicate better.

And I'm guessing if you're honest, that's something you could work on in 2010 as well!

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