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“Where You At?” (Part 2)

12.5.17 Where you at Pt. 2

As an Uber driver, I’ve learned two things above all else: 1) No matter how far you take a person and how right you are with directions, people always guide you when they get close to their destination. 2) Everyone knows their destination. But there are some that don’t know where they are when you pick them up. And from those two lessons I’ve concluded that when giving someone assistance, you have to “drop people off” when they start telling you how to get them to where they need to go. I’ve also learned that we all know where we want to go, but we don’t always know where we are. Getting assistance or help from others is not only about getting to your destination but being honest about your current location.

Uber allows prospective passengers making a request for a ride the ability to drop a pin that is supposed to identify their exact location. As a driver, this is actually an inconvenience. Drivers like the location of the passenger to be connected to a real address. This helps drivers with the GPS and directions. The pin feature has placed the passengers in a different location than their actual location at times. This minor glitch can lead to major problems during high traffic times and when dealing with novice Uber users. Meeting up with a passenger who dropped a pin when the app has not accurately placed pin can be a headache. One of the biggest headaches is the debate between the driver and passenger on who was wrong. As a driver, I send a text or call the passengers when I arrive. My arrival location is based on where the pin tells me to go. When I call and state my location, if it’s not where the passenger is located, the passenger will think I did something wrong. Often when I finally coordinate with the passenger to find them, they enter the car and I have to show them on my screen the location that was entered to prove that it wasn’t my fault. I don’t want to be petty, but I also don’t want it to be said that I’m not providing good service. I often tell passengers that it is much better to find the nearest address, enter that address, and stand there until drivers come.

I find it to be so amazing that passengers know where they are headed, but don’t take the time to find their current address. It is very simple to find the nearest building, type in that address, and stand there until you are picked up. Still, people often believe that without being associated with an address, they can be found.

Being associated with a location that has an identifier is hard for many of us. We are taught that we are unique. Our uniqueness is sold to us as a self-esteem mechanism. Uniqueness often tricks us into believing that if we are in bad situation and use the same decisions as others, we will somehow have outcomes that are alternative to those in the same boat as us. We don’t like being associated with “locations” or “addresses”. To ourselves, we are ourselves only. We want to get to a destination, but the help that is arriving to take us there can’t find us because we don’t want to acknowledge the location serves as an identifier.

Remember the bitstrip phenomenon on Facebook? Did you ever notice that in some instances, the bitstrip characters used to represent your friends could’ve been considered more “attractive” than your actual friends? Have you ever noticed that when friends on Facebook do celebrity look-alike challenges, the celebrities they choose are often considered to be more attractive than them? Have you ever noticed that your friends take worse pics of you than you take of yourself? How about the people who your friends say you look similar to… they are often comparing you to people that you don’t want to be compared to. And if you had to compare yourself to someone’s looks, it’s often someone who is considered “decent-looking” in your own eyes.

Dealing with weight/fitness challenges, controlling substance abuse issues, or learning to be a better friend/spouse/coworker are areas where we aren’t always honest about our location. And if we need help, recognizing where we are can get us to our desired goal/destination much faster. If we need to lose some weight, we aren’t always honest about the category that we’re in. You might say “I’m not as big as her/him” even though you might actually be the same size. Maybe you’ll say “I don’t act like Brian acts when I’m drunk. I’m more sensible”. When in actuality, you may be the same. How about your friendships or intimate relationships? “I’m not that bad of a person when I’m angry”. “I don’t even get angry that much”. “Y’all think I’m mad…my voice is raised..a little…but I’m not angry”. Self-awareness is key to getting to your desired state. You must be honest and aware of where you are. The help that you need can’t get to you if you don’t know your exact coordinates.

Why is the acknowledgment of your location so important? It’s simple. The help you desire to get from others is needed. You can’t do anything of substance by yourself. Those who desire to help need to know where you are. But, they also need YOU to know where you are. In many instances, when a potential passenger cannot identify their location, as a driver, I will cancel the ride if it’s too difficult to make the connection with the passenger.

Take on the effort to get to your destination. But understand that it can’t be done alone. Make it easy for your help to identify where you are. That comes with accepting where you are. Be realistic about comparisons the categories that you’re in. Although you may be unique, you aren’t the only one in your situation. Being able to develop a plan to get you to where you need to be will be easier when your helpers can look at what has worked for others in your situation. If you aren’t quickly identifying where you truly are, the help may cancel out on you.

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