My lunch appointment is late, and admittedly I feel its rude. After all, I work three jobs, am trying to build up my own business, be a good steward of my family, while also seeking to manage hobbies that reenergize me. Admittedly my responses towards people’s tardiness are inconsistent. Part of the time I’m fine with someone being late. Today, however, I feel this person’s tardiness is inconsiderate….or is it?
We live in a culture where delays are accepted more and timeliness is not. Some would argue this leisurely shift within our schedules is a good thing. It represents an attitude that’s not rigid and more open to people’s backgrounds and demands. Others still insist that tardiness should never be accepted. They believe without exception it is rude and that timeliness should remain standard etiquette for each other.
Personally, I fall somewhere in the middle as you might too. I had a Father who taught me, “To be early is to be on-time, to be on-time is to be late, and late is unheard of.” Couple this quote with my training as a Military Officer and timeliness is ingrained within me.
In contrast, another part of me relates to my two generations. Being born just on the edge of both the Millennials and Generation X, I consider myself a “Millennial X.” As a hybrid of the two generations, I know another part of me leans towards the casual side of being punctual. Realizing my tension between the informal and the formal parts of myself, I often ask, “which approach is right?” Simply put, both are correct.