I don’t know how it works exactly.
I can’t quite figure it out.
I do know it takes skill.
I’m talking to Person X.
Everything is great.
Friendly words are said.
And then afterwards, I realize oh, I’ve just been stabbed with something.
Only, I don’t know what.
All I know is I’m standing over here bleeding out, while Person X skips away with all of my creative energy.
I’m like, how did that just happen?
Person X was smiling the whole time.
Everything seemed fine.
But afterwards, some part of me knew it wasn’t fine, and it helped the rest of me figure that out.
Some part of me was like, Hey! It is not your imagination. You are not confused. You feel like crap for a reason.
Those nice words, and that nice smile, and that polite exchange that looked good, but felt awful, felt awful for a reason.
They were trying to take you out.
You know what’s up.
Tell the truth.
Accept the truth.
Is it worth losing hours or days of your creativity to keep things polite with Person X?
It’s okay not to answer the phone.
It’s okay to duck out of the hallway.
It’s okay not to engage in a conversation. Even for a little bit.
Your creative energy is important.
The closer Person X is to you, and the more entangled they are in your world, the more difficult (or excruciating) this is going to be.
And the more important.