Annoyance Comes Easy


If annoyance was a spice it would be salt.   First thing stirred into the pot when something seems ‘a little off’. But once it’s in there, there’s no getting it out. Pretty soon you can’t remember what taste you were actually going for. Annoyance is all that’s left in your mouth.

I have a husband, a horde of offspring, and a dog that barks at everything that moves. I am both self-employed and menopausal. I live in a perpetual state of annoyance…

  • I have been trying to get other people to (a) make a bed, (b) clean a room, or (c) put things in the dishwasher for nearly 3 decades.
  • I cannot remember the last week in which there was not some need for me to converse with a cell phone provider, utility company, handyman/contractor, or credit card call centre.
  • Every window, door, and floorboard in my house either needs to be replaced or has been replaced but was done wrong. Nothing is still covered under warranty except my Sears appliances and since the Sears service centre is located in the Philippines, my extended service agreements are not really living up to their brochure descriptions.
  • I cannot remember the last time everyone in my home turned up for dinner on time.
  • My politics tip left and my in-laws tip right.
  • I have daily conversations with pre-teens, teens, and middle-aged men… just sayin’.

Annoyance comes easily. But what does it really add to the mix, besides high blood pressure and stomach troubles? (See… that salt analogy was spot on!). There are still unmade beds in my house, I still can’t open the screen on the back door, and my father-in-law still believes that global warming is something liberals thought up to screw with the economy in Western Canada.

So I am starting this year by giving up annoyance. Just like that. Shoving that particular spice shaker to the back of the cupboard, so to speak. I haven’t worked out all of the details, but the main gist is that I will be training myself to reach for something else.

Many years ago, I replaced real salt with pepper, and rosemary, and basil, and the results have been lovely. My stew is delightful… everybody says so! I’m not entirely certain what to replace my annoyance with. There will have to be a bit of experimenting…

Have heard good things about tolerance. It’s unfamiliar to me but I am confident that a few google searches can help me learn more about it. And I have a friend who does amazing things with patience.

Humour is a bit more in my wheelhouse. You have to use it sparingly or you wind up with sarcasm, which can be bitter. But I think that with a bit of effort I can find the right measurements.

I suppose I should try acceptance. It’s used by the real pros, like Gandhi, but I think it may be a bit of a stretch for me. I might be able to tolerate that messy room. Might even be able to make a ‘good-natured’ joke about my need for tidiness. But am not sure I will ever get to a place where I just accept that those clothes are going to stay on the floor.

Think I should stick to the basics for awhile: a bit of tolerance, mixed with a liberal amount of patience and a dash of humour. See how it goes. Baby steps.

Author: Kim Scaravelli

Kim Scaravelli is an entrepreneur, marketer, content consultant, and author of “Making Words Work”. The best way to keep in touch is to subscribe to Kim’s popular newsletter. Every second Wednesday, she shares practical writing tips, timely insights, and resources to make your work easier and your content better. To learn more about Kim, visit her website.

2 thoughts

  1. Ah, Kim, that was refreshing to read! It brought to mind a saying I saw not too long ago, “Your husband will get to that chore eventually, there’s no need to remind him every six months”! Lol. While I haven’t had children, I see the same familiar scenes thru my friends who, too, have gone thru teens, tweens, etc. I can only compare by my nieces and nephews who come to visit. Annoyance got the best of me when the Hubby retired. Not there yet? Just wait….24/7. Just sayin’…But to balance that out, menopause finally subsides, allowing one less thing to worry about. Then comes a day when your Dr. says, “You need to make some life changes”. Wow, what? At this age? Yep, easier said than done, but I’m working on it. Humor is my savior. Most everything can be funny, in some way, Murphy’s Law is always lurking out there to remind you of that. Patience, I’ve learned is the hardest for me, but I am working on that one. Wine helps when I’m desperate! Tolerance was my life change. I came to realize that getting something fixed ‘right’ the first time is a rare occurrence these days. Or how about getting the right thing you ordered? I was raised to always do your best, do the right thing, and while I do live by those rules, after over a half century of adulthood I have finally accepted that the term “Let it Go” belongs in every woman’s rule book. There just isn’t enough time left to waste on a lot of those petty annoyances anymore. My blood pressure has subsequently begun to lower…….;) Keep up the good work. Love your thoughts on life…


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