I’m going to share a dirty little secret. A method to my madness, if you will. Something that has been adopted by some of my friends, and mocked all the same. But, heck, it’s worked for me in the past! Just give me credit if I happen to become your heartbreak guru.
You’re a young professional who is out there dating, living the life, maybe a little crazy with the hormones. Whatever your romantic situation, there often comes a point when you need to wean yourself off of some unhealthy influences. Lazy boyfriends, clingy girlfriends, even the one night stand you unintelligently thought would be a good activity. “No strings attached,” you heard them say? WRONG!
So what do you do when you need to remove someone from your existence…immediately. You’re not QUITE ready to hit delete and erase them from your life, to sever the cord. Maybe you need their contact info for future young professional dealings. Or there’s a possibility you’ll reconnect in a better time/space someday down the line. These days, networking easily re-ignites old flames – ya never know! Or you need a (clever) contact entry in place to help you screen out calls.
However, more likely, you’ve let yourself form some sort of an attachment to this person…and you kinda forget they’re bad news bears. Until you see them again. Like short-term dating amnesia.
When handling the need to shift someone out of your immediate vicinity, the classic girl move is to delete the contact from your phone. And email, Facebook, Google+, Twitter. This usually comes at the point of no return – when you’ve found out the guy you’re dealing with is too much heartache, already has a significant other, or is just…a repulsive whackjob.
Well before we reach that need for a digital lobotomy, though, we often stare at the contact spot in our phone sending psychic messages of “please text me” or “why are you such a terrible human being?!” Then, a few weeks later, you cave. Forgetting the details of what made you move to eliminate the toxic goo, you text them.
Lather, rinse, repeat.
Betting you haven’t had your backyard fire pit burning purge fest, or the lobotomy. So how do you remember not to tip toe back to bad situations when you’re truly not ready to cut and run? (It takes a lot to admit that you’re not ready to release, and for this I blog-hug you).
My answer is: labels. I love to label everything; it’s the Chendke Classification Method. Post it notes. Colour codes. Acronyms. But one of my most famous labeling techniques involves plopping an “X” in front of your contact culprit, thereby automatically trickling them to the bottom of your phonebook. Double “A” Aaron will never be the first thing you see again! Because he is now X-Aaron. At the bottom. Far, far away. Soon to be thought of less, and eventually forgotten completely.
This is a great way to forcefully re-jig your contact list so that your skeletons get buried deeper down, and your go-to people can be elevated higher. But what really makes this Chendke Classification Method a little bit kooky, is the strategic labelling of said Xs with wording that will remind you why should not be hitting “call.” Or it will warn you if you had to give your number to the pushy creeper at the bar.
Ultimately, you have to give yourself a fair shot to move forward. If you need to remind yourself that the hot little blonde girl you like to link up with every Saturday exhibits strange traits that make you instantly regret hooking up, then remind yourself. Try and avoid going back down that path (the result is so gorgeously obvious). This Chendke Classification Method is all in good fun; try having a laugh of things that irritated you. Caution: Be weary of sending emails that may transfer your contact’s code name right along! Nothing worse than receiving something from a person you’re seeing that says:
mailto: total perv man-child imbecile with awful shoes bad kisser [jasonbourne’email@example.com]
Subject: Hey, babe – dinner tonight?
It’s still a digital jungle out there, so don’t go too crazy. Use this as an exercise to rename useless people, and then delete them. Oh, and definitely don’t make reference to the size of people’s…homegrown pride. That’ll put a man straight into therapy!
I’ll share a few examples of my take on the Chendke Classification Method:
X-Adam Weirdest EVER
X-Drew Sociopath Over-Sharer
X-David Sketchy Starbucks Stalker
X-Keith Skinny Little Texas. NEVER Again.
X-Josh Really Blonde but Really No Thanks
X-Justin Clusterf**k Con Artist
X-Mark Awkwardly Jaded. Always LATE.
X-Matt Hot but Spacey like Unicorn
X-Mike Egomaniac Whiner, Loves Streisand
X-Tom Sketchy and Big Thighs NO NO NO
X-DO NOT ANSWER Random Baller from Atlanta ??