Since I moved to NY, I have felt myself become much more selective with the people I choose to make time with. This is the result of many different influencing factors which I don’t believe are exclusive to this city – but in a way I think they are amplified by truly embracing the New York City lifestyle to its fullest. I am talking about age, maturity, growing responsibilities, and little extra time – which do not always grow hand in hand.
Today I am particularly talking about flakes: people with the ability to chronically cancel plans at the last minute while coming up with great excuses. If you have a habit of accepting plans with friends and bailing at the last second, please stop. Unless what you want is for them to label you a flake and then stop inviting you to things – in which case, keep canceling. Hope they get the message. My policy for accepting invitations to events/plans I am not interested in going to is: NOT TO ACCEPT. Wait, that means saying no upfront? Yes, say no… I know its scary and you have a fear of never getting invited again, but you can do it. Doing that will save you and the other person so. much. time. Apologize, say you are not feeling up for that particular plan or day, maybe offer up an alternative some other time.
On occasion I invite friends out for drinks and they will immediately say: “Thank you for inviting me! Tonight I just want to stay home, but have fun.” Will I stop talking to people that do this? No! Because I understand the feeling. If anything, I appreciate that kind of honesty. On the other side of the spectrum we have the person who constantly says no to plans and never offers an alternative. This person does not want to hang out with you; and if they do, they suck. At life. Please don’t be this person. I will stop inviting people to things if they make a habit of flaking, even if I enjoy the company of these people, flake enough times, I will no longer invest my time in trying to see them. This should work for everyone else.
Flaking is something that I have seen myself put up with less and less for the past year; and therefore, I hold myself to a higher standard as well. I believe my word should be worth gold – even for the little things; and so I try my best not to cancel on friends and family, especially not regularly. I hold myself accountable – you should too. Life is already messy enough; don’t overcomplicate yourself with flakes.