I was sitting in a bar, not too far away from where I worked with a man that wasn’t my husband.
Who was I with?
John (for the sake of this story), the man who had my job before me.
What was I doing there?
Getting all the dirt.
I had met John the year before because he and I were part of a team of assistant principals who were paired up to do professional development together.
The thing is, he was there our first month, and then gone the next, and the next, and the next.
None of us knew what had happened to him.
There were rumors, but none of us knew the truth.
So, that is why I found myself sitting across from him sharing a beer.
I wanted to know the truth.
Over the course of almost 2 hours, he shared his story.
He shared his frustration.
He shared his anger.
He shared his resentment.
He shared his pain.
And I was right there along with him.
Looking back now, I know that I wasn’t really looking for the truth.
That is a complete lie.
What I was looking for was validation.
I was looking for someone else to commiserate with.
I was looking for someone else to share in my misery.
I was looking for someone else to stand with me, so we could point our fingers in the same direction--AT HER.
And where did that get me?
NOTHING about my situation changed after that beer.
If anything, it only made my suffering greater, and my situation worse.
I was playing the victim and colluding with another victim, so we could stand in our righteousness of victimhood together.
If only I had gotten out of my stance of “poor me” and gotten into a stance of “yes me”, I would have seen how much I COULD have changed about the situation, if only I had tried.
I would have seen how I could have shifted myself from a position of PAIN to a position of POWER.
I would have seen how I could in fact change my shitty work situation.
Now, some of you might be reading this and thinking, “I have no power, they are my boss.”
Trust me, you have a whole lot more power than you think you do.
It's time to unleash it.
Let's Create Community, Not Competition
P.S. If you are entrenched in a shitty work situation because of a difficult boss or colleague, I invite you to come hang out with me on Facebook, where I share advice and support every day.