Redefining “Going Postal”

Mailboxes on NC 80, Celo, North Carolina

Mailboxes on NC 80, Celo, North Carolina

At the counter, the postal clerk grabbed the box and tore it open as she said, “You do not need to spend this much money.” It all happened so fast, there was no time to say, “Let me think about this.” When it was too late, only then did she ask, “What is it?” Nevertheless, she did not wait for a response and declared she would put whatever it was in an envelope. “See it will save you $5,” she declared confidently as the cash register displayed the balance due. The expensive gray-blue cashmere wrap addressed to a special customer would arrive balled up and wrinkled in a packing envelope. It was wrapped beautifully with tissue paper, a business card and logo sticker and protected in a standard mailing box—an elegant item deserving an elegant package.

This drive-by assault left me in its wake feeling bewildered. How had I become a victim? Someone had undermined the best of intentions, and I had no words to defend a position.

The experience redefined “going postal.”


The lessons from this brief encounter:

1                 Avoid being a victim by saying “Wait, let me think about this.” This is an appropriate request that will buy time in any situation to make a good decision.

2                  Don’t “go postal” in assuming you know what another person needs, wants or is thinking.

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