Graceful Email

What broken email taught me about Grace.

It has been 1 week since my email has been down. I have not been able to send or receive email to [email protected]. The problem is still not fixed and I have no way of replying to client emails.

This problem has stressed me out beyond what I thought was possible. Here’s why this email problem has driven me to insanity.

  1. I feel like a flake.

What must the kind, patient people who I’ve been conversing with over email be thinking of me? “Oh.. so she’s the kind of person who writes an email  and then just blows you off for weeks at a time. On second thought, I don’t think I want to work with her.” At least, that’s what I might be thinking if someone didn’t respond to professional emails for a week. To which I respond, “I AM SO SORRY ITS NOT ABOUT YOU ITS ABOUT TECHNOLOGY!”

  1. I feel inept.

I genuinely cannot fix this problem till the guy who currently hosts my email fixes it. I am powerless and at the mercy of his skills and time. The problem is that I don’t even know what must be done to fix it and since he is the only one with access to my email server (I don’t even have access) I feel like a technology hostage.

  1. I feel like I’ve lost business.

Without even being able to set an auto responder message like, “Thanks for contacting me, but right now my email server is down and I don’t know when it will be fixed, please email me at X address in the meantime” I can’t set up an auto responder because my email doesn’t send mail. So even if I had an auto responder, it wouldn’t send.

What I’ve realized though all this is it’s ok if people can’t reach me in an instant, and it’s ok if I can’t respond right away. If people don’t have the grace to be patient with me, then they’re probably not the kind of people I want to work with anyways.

Another lesson I’ve learned is if someone takes a long time to reply to my emails in the future, to be ok with it. I have no idea what that person is going through and why it took them a long time to reply. They could have had a personal crisis, (or a broken email crisis :P).

In a world of instant gratification and moving fast, a broken email is a reminder that I don’t need to move at a million miles an hour, in fact, it’s probably better if I don’t.

P.S. if you send me an email… I can’t promise when I will be able to reply.. I’m hoping it will be fixed this week!

Comments

  1. Oh, I can relate! My website wasn’t sending me contact forms for months until I realized it and I totally beat myself up. Thank you for your honesty and vulnerability! Good luck!!

  2. Hi, Christine. I hear you. Technology is both a blessing and a curse. I often long for the days before even fax machines existed. We live in a world of trigger finger responses and not much thoughtfulness. I truly believe it is the reason we are all so stressed out and scattered. Good luck with getting your e-mail fixed. I hope that when you finally get in touch with the folks who reached out to you that they are understanding.

  3. I feel you! I was without interest or a phone for a weekend and I was a basket case. But it turned out to be OK!

  4. Oh no! I’d be an anxious wreck, too! I rely so much on email. Guess I never considered it that way! Good for you for sharing such optimism!!

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