DL Fowler's Blog

SYWS – Give and Take

Posted in Inside a Writer's Head, Psychology, SYWS by DLFowler on November 6, 2011

You know you want to. But you just eat your words and let the moment pass. Maybe that’s because you don’t know how to say it, or you think showing self restraint is polite. In either case, I’ll be devoting my Sunday morning blog post to Stuff You Want to Say (SYWS). Feel free to use my words. You can memorize them and play them back to end your weekend on a powerful note, or you can print them out and slip them onto a co-worker’s desk to show him/her you’re locked and loaded to survive the work week.

So here’s my next offering.

There are two kinds of people in the world. Givers and takers. Tell givers they can’t give enough to satisfy a taker. If you know one, tell them to practice discretion. I’m not talking about setting boundaries with takers. The only boundaries they understand are things like moats, rings of fire and the like. You have to avoid them like the plague. They don’t really get that their behavior is just plain wrong.

Takers. Do you know one of them? They’re the ones whose core value is: What’s mine is mine and what’s yours might has well be mine ‘cause I’m going to use you until you’re worn out. Another way to phrase it is: Use them then lose them. So what do you tell them? Start by realizing their going to be offended by anything you say other than “You want it? Okay. You can have it.”

Here’s how you handle a taker. Demand quid pro quo. Tell them it’ll cost something. After they have their little tantrum, they’ll move on to their next victim.


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