A year ago, my husband and I stayed at the Congress Plaza Hotel on Michigan Ave in the heart of Chicago. Built in the early 1900’s, transformed and renovated a few times, this hotel hosted presidents including Harding, Cleveland, Coolidge, and both Roosevelts. There is an expansive ballroom, marble in the foyer when you walk in and doormen.
I love doormen.
Our room, air conditioned with velvet moss curtains felt like a living museum. I thought, maybe presidents stayed in this very room…So I did what anyone would do – looked in the bathroom.
And I found that the bathroom had gorgeous decorated tile throughout, so I did what anyone would do – I took a photo.
There is a point.
It could have been in that very bathroom that a president, or movie star, or famous or not-so-famous people made a big decision or choice. Isn’t it true that clarity comes when you get a minute to yourself, with no one else, and you can think without being interrupted?
And where does that happen most? In the bathroom.
So, I’m pairing this photo of the bathroom tile from the Congress Plaza Hotel in Chicago with a saying that buys us clarity and time. It’s a powerhouse of a statement, really. It’s non-confrontational and respectful to others and to ourselves.
“Can I get back to you on that?”
That doesn’t mean yes. It doesn’t mean no. It means, “This has taken me off guard and while you want me to answer this right now, if I do, I’ll regret it and so will you. Let me think. You will know as soon as I do.”
This works for everyone from timeshare sales people to kids asking about dinner. I’m banking that presidents, movie stars and CEOs have used this very phrase.
We can say, “Can I get back to you on that?”, go to the bathroom, sit and think, and come up with what we really mean to say.
I can almost promise this phrase alone will reduce random questions that mean nothing to 9 year olds, cause 13 year olds to calculate what and how they ask for a sleepover, and spark husbands to respect that we are no longer living in default yes- land.
It might possibly restore self-respect, ease stress, and cause integrity between what we mean and what we say.
Could it really do all that?
Let me know. 😉