There's a TON going on. You're crazy busy at work. Your daughter's soccer game got rescheduled for the third time. You have no idea how you're going to afford a new roof.  Your doctor's appointment is running 45 minutes late.  The dog has a weird "thing" on his leg. Today's your mom's birthday and you haven't even gotten a card.

And you're out of coffee.


When there's a lot on your mind, it SEEMS like the entire world is crashing in around you and there's just too much to handle.  It's not true, it never is. But it sure feels that way.

When that happens, we're all capable of losing our cool and snapping on someone.  Or maybe we just treat the ones we love just a little worse, expecting eternal forgiveness and unconditional understanding.

For me, I'm WAY more likely to "go off" on my mom, dad, or brother than I am a best friend, boyfriend, coworker, or any other non-related person.  Family is kind of "grandfathered in" to ALWAYS being my mom, dad, or brother.  I tend to protect the OTHER relationships that aren't as "permanent"...the ones that I risk LOSING.

For Eric, he has the tendency to lose it on strangers. If he's already annoyed and you're in Customer Service, and not up to snuff? He'll let you KNOW about it, and then some!

To stave off potential blow-ups, I'm a pre-emptive apologizer:  I'll say "It's not you, I'm in a REALLY bad mood with a lot on my mind.  Can you please just not talk to me right now?  Because I'm going to rip your face off."

Eric?  He goes off on you, and doesn't apologize for it. He snaps, and moves on (no one really likes him...).

We brought this up because a woman in California FELT like she was being rude to a Starbucks barista, so she went back the next day with a $50 tip, and an apology that read, in part:

The thought of leaving a trail of unkindness like that is not the path I want to reflect.  Not for you, not for me.  You are a young man [who's] clearly working hard to build a future, and you should be commended.  Keep up your attitude of cheer and hope.  [And] stay hopeful no matter what kind of people cross your path.

That's what it's all about -- learning an important lesson about kindness, compassion, and staying humble.

"Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about." ~Wendy Mass