I emailed a friend today asking a question and got two responses, one was to an email I’d sent a few days ago. It started
“I am so sorry …”
An apology for not answering the email faster. I’d just read some article Google put at the bottom of my homepage about 5 ways to be happier, or something like that and the first way was STOP APOLOGIZING FOR LATE RESPONSES TO EMAILS.
Of course, today, I couldn’t find it to put here, but I did find this one: https://www.thecut.com/2017/04/stop-apologizing-for-the-delayed-response-in-our-emails.html which was apparently a pretty viral originally off-the-cuff thing. Anyway, not having people to lay this off on, I’m writing an open response to my email corespondents.
UNLESS WE ARE IN A BUSINESS RELATIONSHIP OR THERE’S AN OBVIOUS TIME-DEPENDENT SOMETHING, I REALLY DON’T GIVE A CRAP WHEN YOU RESPOND.
The problem is, when we think we have to respond right away, and then we don’t, and don’t some more, we start to feel guilty and like we have to explain and then we get anxious about that and then we avoid responding because we don’t want to feel bad about not responding. In the end, we resent the person we aren’t responding to because we feel guilty.
See how this sucks? You feel bad and when I might have gotten a pleasant 2-sentence graph saying hi, I don’t!
STOP IT. EVERYONE. STOP APOLOGIZING. HELL, STOP APOLOGIZING FOR EVERY DAMNED THING WITH EVERYONE. FREE YOURSELF!
(I was going to put a big red circle with a slash over the header pic but I liked it too much. But you get the idea.)
I have a friend in Japan
and luckily we are two women of a certain age and similar disposition and we actually discussed it. Don’t recall how it came up but we said yeah, it was a continuing conversation, but sometimes the continuing part was a few weeks later.
Sometimes we talk back and forth for a day or two, some days I send her pleas to read my stupid WIP for the 9th time and she does. Srsly! How great is that?
And sometimes we don’t talk and I have no idea who the last one was who did.
Adulthood is emailing
‘sorry for the delayed response!’
back and forth until one of you dies.
— writer Marissa Miller on Twitter
Please. Everyone. It’s okay. If I email with you as a friend, I love you. I like hearing from you and I also like not being bombarded and I also like being able to send one of my 1200 word missives and you are so free to pretty much ignore it.
Just don’t avoid me because you didn’t answer right away and if and when you do, I’m delighted to hear from you and wish you’d trust me in that and not apologize. See, I think love is letting everybody be pretty much who they are and being okay with that.
And I think everyone else should stop apologizing, too.