The holiday season is a time of travel. Which means either you are the guest at someone’s house or you are the host of guests. Benjamin Franklin’s cited as the originator of the classic quote, and here is an article that build on the concept in Psychology Today.
Benjamin Franklin famously said that guests, like fish, begin tosmell after three days. Many of us are inclined to agree. I myself recently struggled to share my space and resources with a houseguest. I wanted to be hospitable yet I experienced an unexpectedly inhospitable reaction to my mackerel-like guest (herein known as “Mack”). The dissonance was intense. What was up with that? Fortunately, my psychology arsenal includes tools from the psychology subdiscipline ofenvironmental psychology. It is there we find theories and research on human territoriality that explain the trouble with houseguests (at least some of it!).
What comes to mind though is wouldn’t life be better if IT services behaved like well mannered house guests and respect the territorial boundaries of the host.
How many of you are frustrated when new IT service change your routine?
Houseguests then, are stressful to the extent that they disrupt our routines and usurp the high amount of control we normally enjoy in this personal territory. If their routines interfere with ours or if their presence restricts our normal uses of home spaces, stress is likely.
Unfortunately new IT services don’t leave like a house guest, so their habits now influence yours.
How many of you think some of the IT services that come in leave a bad smell in your clean operations?
Of course, territoriality isn’t the whole picture. Among other things, increased household labor also makes guests “smelly” (often more of an issue for women in traditionally gendered households where they bear the brunt of cooking and cleaning). The moral of this story: if you want to stay a welcome houseguest, it probably pays to respect your host’s home as a primary territory, and to keep your visit short.