Burn any bridges lately?

A tired, but more applicable than ever cliche, "don't burn any bridges" is racing through my head. Why, you ask?
Well, to begin with…the global news feels more like local news, the internet keeps us connected to anyone and everyone — shall I continue?

I adore the endless possibilities of connectivity. I find it equally exciting and intimidating. The sheer rush of doing a Google search sends tingles through my rapidly typing fingers as I attempt to "connect" with others. Of course I wasn't all that thrilled when a boy (now a man) from my high school years located me attempting to "connect." I must admit his keen desire to reminisce about days from the past (and things I do not recollect) caused me to feel, well…awkward.

I was gentle with the rebuff, but a rebuff it was. And then I questioned…oops, did I just burn a bridge? Did I just commit a faux pas that could cost me — after all he knows people, who know people, who know me!

Such a small world we live in and due to our immediate accessibility to one another, it is getting smaller by the moment. There are wonderful upsides to all of the accessibility, but there are added responsibilities, too.

As we hear, be careful who you step on climbing up the ladder because they will be there on your way down. Our reputations precede us and follow us; people will remember how you treated them waaaay back whenever. And yes, some people hold grudges and refuse to move on.

We never know just when we will have the occasion to bump into someone from our past, perhaps give a referral, offer our endorsement and simply pay it forward. And yes, maybe even reminisce about the good ole days.

Treat people well, treat people fairly, treat people with kindness and respect and when they pass you on the bridge or ladder they will welcome you rather than try to shove you off!

Okay I need to find my buddy from high school's phone number…just in case I need to put out the fire on the bridge!

"He who burns his bridges better be a damn good swimmer." ~ Anonymous

Deborah Thomas-Nininger
Deborah Thomas-​Nininger is the founder of DTN Productions International, a company that provides soft skills training specializing in "Reputation Management,” business etiquette and communication effectiveness. Deborah’s first two books Reputation Management – Building Your Brand and Tweetables for Life will be available late fall 2015 with her MiniManners for Maximum Effect series to follow early next year. Deborah can be reached at dtn@​dtn-​productions.​com and the DTN web site offers regular news, exciting podcasts and DTN updates at www​.dtn​-productions​.com.
Deborah Thomas-Nininger

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