Mistakes are often simply mistakes and forgiveness is key.

In teaching Building Healthy Relationships, The Mandt System teaches, when there is trust in a relationship, it is easier to see a mistake as simply a mistake.
I had an opportunity to experience that recently. My car needed repair. The best time to address the need is when I am on the road, not using my vehicle. Unfortunately, Don’s, the business I’ve used for years is closed on the weekend. He understands my schedule and has been willing to accommodate me. We discuss the repair in advance, but I leave my locked car at their lot securing the keys in their garage during the weekend. They make the repair and leave the car in the lot for me to pick up when I return usually very late Friday night or on Saturday. I pay them the following week.

Late Friday night, when I took a cab from the airport to Dons to pick up my repaired car, it was no-where to be found. Of course the office was closed and there is no emergency number. I had the cab take me home. Sat. I sent an inquiry to their website. Obviously he monitors the website because he called a short time later. Don was extremely sincerely apologetic. He explained he simply got distracted and forgot to take the car out of the garage. He characterized his mistake as “unprofessional”, offered to give me a discount and bring the car to my house. He sounded disappointed with himself.

I down played the issue, rejected the discount and suggested when he had time, he could move the car out of the garage and let me know. I reassured him that I appreciated his willingness to allow me to drop off and pick up my car outside business hours. I realize that is a risk and have always been pleased with the quality of the work. Mistakes happen and there was no reason for him to feel so badly about it.

I was able to pick up my repaired car that afternoon and alerted him when I had. It was during that call that I learned the “distraction” was an emergency hospitalization of his wife. Certainly it was easy to understand how the error occurred. I was glad I had been so understanding with him. I believe our reactions to the issue truly built the relationship between us.

Perhaps more often than we acknowledge, a mistake is simply a mistake. With all the drama occurring in this country and the world in general, it should be easy to let go of minor inconveniences, put things in perspective and “not sweat the small stuff”. It is certainly easier to do so when there is mutual respect and trust in the relationship.

Aaryce Hayes – SVP Operations