Ever spent lots of time wondering why you didn’t get a reply to the email you sent to someone? You imagine all kinds of scenarios, and none of them seem convincing to you. After all, you wonder, don’t they have the time to send just one reply? In reality, there could be multiple genuine reasons why you did not get a reply immediately. This anxiety is the ‘no reply anxiety’ and we all have gone through it at some point of time. Here are some tips to handle the times when you’re waiting for an important mail, and the tension gets to you.
How to deal with the no reply anxiety
When someone doesn’t text back or mail back, your no reply anxiety starts. Maybe you had sent a message to your colleague, boss, or a new client or the latest love of your life. If you do not get a reply back instantly or within the time that you had stipulated for the mail, then you start running various dramas in your head. You hate the fact that the person could be deliberately ignoring you. Because of the unanswered E-mail, you start thinking that the person does not like you, or that he or she does not want to do business with you.
But all the while, the very nature of mail and text messaging systems is asynchronous – that is, there has to be a delay in sending and receiving messages. The delay could be a minute, 5 minutes, an hour, a day or some days. And sometimes, the reply may never come!
Reasons why someone could delay replying
The recipient might be under stress
One of the ways how to reduce the no reply anxiety is to first consider that the person could be under some kind of stress. They may be ill or having a bad time emotionally. Who knows, they could have just broken up with their girlfriend or boyfriend?
To allay your ‘no reply anxiety’, instead of assuming the worst, think that the other person’s email behavior is about them, not you.
Think of the times when you were in the same situation, and when ultimately the reply did come, it was for your good. You have to keep a grip on your imagination and force yourself not to be negative.
They are overwhelmed by mail
Try to be objective why you didn’t receive a reply. The person may be deluged with a load of mails which does not allow them the time to reply. They might in fact be feeling guilty that they have not managed to write back to you. Lots of people receive a ton of mail, which they have to reply every day.
Along with all their work, it’s not a surprise that the recipient of your mail is slow to respond to your mail. Don’t let the no reply anxiety overwhelms you and try to think of the many valid reasons why they have not replied.
What to do to avoid anxiety
1. Convince yourself that everything is ok
You must have been mailing for a long time now. Undoubtedly, the unanswered E-mail situation has happened before. Remember the times when you were no anxious that you almost bit all your nails off. You will remember that, ultimately your mails were replied. Just looking back will help you understand that the no reply anxiety is of no use.
It just drains your energy, and makes you feel nervous and unable to go about your tasks normally. So all the anxiety you are suffering now may be pointless. When you remember all these facts, your brain will be convinced too, and you will get back to normal.
What to do when you become anxious when there is no ‘feeling’ in the mail
When someone doesn’t respond to your mail, you worry. When the much awaited email arrives, then you heave a sigh of relief. In a mail, usually people add smileys and other symbols to convey emotion. But this does not happen always. Many people do not add emoticons to their mails. So if you receive a very cut and dried mail, do not be upset. It probably means nothing.
If the person doesn’t respond, it is probably because the writer is not naturally a gushing person, or maybe he/she was distracted while mailing to you, or maybe that they were in a hurry and just dashed off the mail. If the person has previously written in a casual manner to you, then it could be that the recipient might be less than happy with you.
There could be many reasons for this, and you probably know it. Think of your interaction before you sent the mail, and if there could be any reason why they might be angry with you. If not, keep your calm and sit tight.
2. Take your time and read it again
When you receive a mail which is ambiguous, then you should read it again when you have calmed down a little. When you read a mail in a state of anxiety, you might lose the actual positive message and focus on the worst. Experts say that your anxious state of mind behaves like a blindspot, which does not allow you to look at the positivity in the email.
When you are finally able to control your anxiety, you should read the mail again, and you might find that it is actually for your best.
3. Move on
You’re waiting for the all-important text from your new boyfriend/girlfriend and if he/she doesn’t text back then it triggers an anxiety attack. You start thinking that they are not interested in you. You don’t know the person very well, which means you don’t know their habits. Maybe this person is not in the habit to reply instantly.
Besides, if you sent a personal text during office hours, they may not get the chance to reply. So, be patient and wait for them to reply. If they still don’t reply for about a two or three days, then take it as a message that you are better off without this person and move on.
The anxiety arising out of not receiving a text or mail back will occur again and again throughout life. It’s best to give the benefit of the doubt to others, be patient and take it in your stride.