Today I was talking with a friend about where she works. She has worked there for a very long time and she feels like she can't leave, though there are days that she wants to. I asked her what it was about her job, and she said that she basically likes what she does, but that some of the people are difficult to deal with, and it makes her want to find a better place.
I had to lay the truth on her as quickly as possible: There are difficult people everywhere. You will never escape them. Most likely, when you go to your next job, you will find the same kind of difficult people. Why? Because these are the types of people who bother YOU. These people who seem random and chaotic are not. They are there to help you be better. They are there to help you be stronger. They are there so you can let go of whatever it is about them that bothers you.
Though it might be hard to believe, this is where the magic happens. This is where you can improve your whole life by simply viewing these people as an opportunity, not a burden. There will always be someone at work who bothers you. It might be one, two, three, it might be an entire gaggle of people who bother you. But no matter what they are doing, the problem is yours.
I have had these people problems everywhere I go. I very recently figured out that all I had to do is remove my reaction to their behavior and the problem vanished. Like a flash, I saw in a specific person all the other people in every other job that had tortured me in one way or another, and I realized that I had been giving these people the power. I realized that all I had to do was let them be, to be okay with what they were doing, and I would be free. The challenge came when I realized that most of these people bothered me because they were treating me in the same way I sometimes treat myself and others. they bother me because they remind me of ME.
I realized that in order to be okay, I had to be okay with me. I had to accept my darkness, my bad side, my hypocrite. Not only accept it but embrace it. That is some very challenging shit to wade through, but when you do, and you come out on the other side, you enjoy your work more. You have more confidence. You understand that on a very basic level, you cannot be swayed.
I realized something that I will carry with me for as long as I work and live among people.
I just have to see the storm, I don't have to be the storm.
I can stand outside and observe, but the moment I try to correct the storm, or argue with it, I become a part of it, and I start to lose myself. I become, quite easily, what I believe I hate, thereby confirming my bad feelings about this person in the first place. It is so ironic it is almost painful.
But to stand outside and observe? To make note of what is happening and not engage? That is freedom. That is power. When you cannot be swayed by perceived threat or danger, you have liberated yourself from your own demons. Give it a shot. Try it with one person who bothers you. Figure out how you can let that go and see how your life changes.
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