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Wednesday Wisdom: You Have More “Power” Than You Think

October 9, 2020

Friday feeling for women entrepreneurs, female business owners, small businesses

Returning from a trip back in time to the pioneer days where Laura Ingalls and her family were close friends of mine, I landed back in my home office with electricity, power, water, and all the modern conveniences women living and working from home offices are used to having. Even though I reside in a house built in 1866, doesn’t mean I want to “live” in those times. Since the sudden wind burst which occurred on Wednesday at 2 p.m. knocking out everything needed to conduct business the way I’m used to out of my home the past 25 years, today is the first time I’ve seen the “light” to write a blog post to inspire you in the ways of boldness, advocacy, and tenacity.

When the NYSEG restoration time for our electricity kept creeping later and later every hour we checked it, and into a dark night and cold house with no running water because the water pumps out of a well from an electric pump, we grew increasingly unsatisfied with the delays since only 9 houses on our road were without power. Calling the “emergency outage” number to get a human being on the phone to talk to was harder than walking 20 miles on the Nebraska plains in a sand storm to find someone to listen to us.  Properly following the automated prompts by a robo-voice left us frustrated until I decided to truly claim it was an emergency demanding to talk to a human being. By being so forward and not following the rules, we talked to a helpful woman, filed a complaint and learned the trouble was caused at an electric pole 4 miles from our house.

Jumping in our “wagon” we drove to Electric Pole 338 to find it totally fine with no working crews near it. We also noticed all the houses from the end of our road to the pole had electricity meaning there was no logical sense what the woman told us. “Did they find out we aren’t Trump supporters and I’m a feminist with a photo of Ruth Bader Ginsburg in our front yard so they turned off our electricity?” I asked my husband half joking.  Knowing we were smart, we called NYSEG again this time getting a man on the phone who kept trying to tell me I didn’t understand the way their electrical system worked. I said, “Dude, I’m smart and it makes no logical sense that only 9 houses on our street including ours that don’t have electricity and everyone else does. Your servicemen are wrong. They need to come back out and check again.”  Within 2 hours, 3 NYSEG trucks drove up our road and within 5 minutes our glorious power was back on. I waved to the trucks as they drove back down the road thanking them for finally figuring it out.

No, I don’t want to become a detective or a NYSEG employee to help with electrical situations, but I do want to remind you that have the “power” to fix a situation that doesn’t seem right. Don’t just trust what someone is telling you if it doesn’t make sense. Use your logic and tenacious spirit to get solutions to problems. Sometimes you might need to take on extra responsibility and communicate your findings to others to get situations resolved.

If we didn’t follow our guts and logic, I would still be taking a shower in my cold pool, drinking coffee by candlelight, and reading a “Little House on the Prairie” book to feel kinship with women from the pioneer days.

Speak up! Be your own best advocate always.

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