Yesterday I had the realization that I don’t like some people much. Now, I know what you are thinking – normally I love people and that remains the truth. You can love people or respect them for their position in this world without liking them much. I don’t mean to globalize but I have come to the realization that there are a number of people out there that use other people and don’t care.

Where am I coming up with all of this? It is simple my friends. You see, I was used a great deal during my younger years by family and friends and, in turn, I had become a user as well. Unfortunately, I became such a user that I manipulated and hurt some people that I cared a great deal for. It was the only thing I knew. Today, however, I can see users a mile away and I have learned to walk the other way. I will grant you that it makes me feel proud when someone asks my advice on something because of my expertise but it are those that waste my time, picking my brain, and then disregard anything I say or try to negate the advice they had asked for. It is just plain hurtful!

Right now I have a few situations in which people are trying to use me, and I know, in turn, they will hurt me by putting my thoughts and skills down in the end. The only situation that is authentic is my helping a friend set up a website for her volunteer volleyball league. There is no need to worry about that situation for it is a truly authentic and respective friendship. But, last night I had gotten word of my brain being picked once again. The problem is that this other person does not believe in a woman’s ability to be able to do certain things such as be successful in IT or handle money (and various other “manly” areas). So why is this person now seeking my advice? It is because the person is lost and sees me as a last resort to tell them how to make money on the Internet. They want a clear and easy way (little effort) in which they can supplement their income. Well, I hate to bust people’s bubbles but it is not easy and starting any business – even ecommerce – takes work. This person does not have a business plan nor does this person even know what they want to sell online – they want me to give them all the answers. Normally I would try and help but this person berates me and interrogates my advice with a harsh tone, rolling eyes, and “huffy” stance.

Had it been my earlier years, I would stay and help – taking invisible slaps across the face. Today, however, is my day of power and I refuse to be a victim to this any longer. I am human, I have feelings and beliefs. And the fact that I am a successful woman in IT and have gotten my family through a terminal illness and lung transplant while switching jobs, buying a house, working full time, and going to graduate school full time is a testimony of my authentic power. No sir, I am afraid that you will have to find the assistance you seek through someone else. I am not volunteering to be your punching bag.

After her husband received a double-lung (bilateral) transplant in 2004, Shannon founded the Angel Cove Organ Donation Awareness Shop, which provides awareness t-shirts and gifts products for transplant recipients, living organ donors and donor families - giving 100% of the profits to help heart and lung transplant recipients with medical costs. Shannon lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin with her wonderful husband and two chocolate Labrador Retrievers.

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