Last night, at 8 p.m., I decided to let my inhibitions take a rest when I volunteered to be hypnotized by entertainer Buzz Collins at the Greater Ottawa Home Builders’ Association christmas dinner. After some effort from the audience of about 200, Collins secured about 15 others — then put us through some sort of test, resulting in me and five others staying on stage for the rest of the show.
I will leave it to your imagination whether or not we were truly hypnotized. Yet we “got it” — enjoying a relatively calm meditative state, and then, within the frame of that relaxed perspective, I went with the flow. This resulted in me “falling asleep” on the stage, speaking Martian, and gladly prizing a lump of coal as my Christmas gift. (This video is from another show — I’m hoping an Ottawa audience member will send me an image of my own performance.)
I came home, went to bed, only to be jarred awake in the middle of the night by a family medical emergency which resulted in a 911 call, and a visit to the hospital behind an ambulance. Overnight duty staff at the hospital said nothing would happen for several hours, that all was under control, and I should feel free to return home to get some sleep.
At noon, I needed to take our son to school for a delayed school start, then I visited an auto body shop to have a minor (but important) repair done. I pulled up to the door and one of the body shop workers wanted to take my key right away. But I had lost the hospital parking pass. I threw a “hissy fit” perhaps under the stress of the day, but certainly not reflecting well on my personal maturity. The body shop owner came out, said I was wrong to treat his employee that way, and that he would now no longer do business with me, and I should leave. I tried to make peace, to explain, to accept responsibility, but the owner clearly and emphatically said the doors were closed for any relationship with his business, forever.
Somewhat shaken, I went to the hospital to find that all is well with my ill family member — I would just need to get some clothes, and return. I’m now writing this blog entry before doing some much-needed exercise.
This is a story of mixed emotions, bad decisions, wise actions, medical necessity, human respect, frustration, risk-taking and relaxation; all within less than 24 hours. Which perspective is wisest, which is right, and what lessons can we learn?
First, we are all human. We’ll have ups and downs, and moods, and bad times and good. Within that framework, when we are connecting, marketing, selling or communicating, we need to respect the state of mind of others around us. My wife clarified that she knows the body shop owner had other issues beyond his reactions to me; this is not to excuse my behaviour; but it could explain his extremely strong reactions. ’
Relaxing, enjoying and allowing ourselves to participate in some good-natured fun (as a hypnotist subject, for example) can only result in good things. I had fun connecting and being “on stage” at the association, and at least one worthy relationship for future business will likely result from the experience.
Finally, emergencies occur. The very nature of an emergency denies predictability and scheduling; we need to respond quickly, change our routines, and accept that not everything will work out on schedule. If you are dealing with clients, you may not know about these emergencies and their ripple effects. Maybe it is good to relax and accept the meditative state that I experienced last night.