Similar emails like the one below come in regularly…
The short answer?
Move on to someone who treats you with respect and thinks you are important enough to find the time to reply.
The long answer?
Everyone claims how “busy” they are. To me, that’s the go-to excuse. Add to that our culture is more narcissistic than ever. We all know that you make time for the important things to you.
So when I hear someone claim that they didn’t have time, as in the above visitor email, they tell me they didn’t consider the email a priority. What you sent was not worth their time — at that time.
I wrote about this before in January too.
What is a real friend?
It’s not someone on social media or a new contact you met online. Nor is it someone who you have exchanged a few emails with.
The official definition is:
A person whom one knows and with whom one has a bond of mutual affection, typically exclusive of sexual or family relations.
Forming a bond takes time and shared experiences. It also takes effort and trust.
With the advent of social media and “friending” and “Like” buttons everywhere, we have diluted the word’s true meaning. All the while, maintaining the above definition is still apropos. It’s not.
With a couple of emails here or there or being part of the same online group, an increasing number of folks are assuming a level of intimacy that isn’t there because they believe in the old definition of a friend.
True friends are not created by clicking a button or a heart or like icon. Enduring friendship is developed over time by communicating, sharing, and thinking of another person. Real friends should be judged by their actions, not their words alone.
What isn’t a real friend?
By not taking the time to reply to those who email you, they will perceive that you are ignoring them. And admit it — you are. They aren’t enough of a priority for you to take the time to respond. So why pretend otherwise?
If you sincerely care, then make an effort to reply promptly. Let them know you are not intentionally trying to be dismissive and make the time moving forward.
If you don’t really care to make that effort, why not tell them the truth? You’ll respond when you can and do the best you can because they are not a priority for you. Harsh, I know. But why lead them on?
You Deserve Better
For those who are ignored, maybe consider accepting at face value that you are not important enough to that person for them to take the time to reply. They may “like” you, but you aren’t a priority. If you were, they would find the time to respond.
At least acknowledging that would put your expectations in a more realistic light. You can then choose to spend time with those who appreciate having you as a true friend.