I was driving home sobbing, heaving sobs.
I could finally let go of holding mySELF together all day. All the pent-up emotions were coming out my eyeballs.
I wanted to call someone, my mom, my sweet friend, Michelle; someone who could emotionally hold me in that moment. But when I tried my mom, and she didn’t answer, in some small way I felt relieved.
Intuitively I knew I just needed to let it all out, not talk about it yet, just FEEL it.
My day started in a meeting with my current manager, accompanied by manager to be, effective July 1.
To give a little background, I moved companies and started a new job last August, I was excited about the opportunity, ready to move on, AND from the first time I spoke to this guy – my current manager – I KNEW he wasn’t a straight shooter. You know that icky feeling you get about someone when you can hear their manipulative mind play in their words?
In the interview process I experienced his passive aggressive communication style, and loaded questions. I remember answering one of his questions in a very direct way, Since I already had a job, I wasn’t worried about defensively communicating back; and it called him on his s*%t; he was like, “woah, woah, let’s take a step back”. It was an interesting dynamic, I knew what I was dealing with, and it did give me pause on taking the job.
All things considered. I felt confident I’d make the right choice for me.
And so it was, I accepted the job offer and had a few weeks of bliss before training started. I found out I’d be back in accounts I had recently left, I was SO happy about that. There are a few accounts I just loved, and had great relationships with, so this was awesome. I began getting acquainted with my new work partner, who I ADORED, and really loved that my geography was simple and made it easy for me to enjoy my personal life, too.
6 months in, the company started talking about expansion. They had blown their launch goal out of the water, like 4X, and they wanted to “increase the footprint”, to establish market leadership.
Their intention, as they told us, was to overlay one additional person into each territory. When my current manager was with me back in January he asked me, “do you think you need another person in this geography? do you think you need both you, and Bill here?”
That was my first clear sign that this guy didn’t want me on his team, and was passively aggressively looking for ways to not have me on it.
Just a couple short months later I was invited to join him on a call to “discuss a few things”, I honestly thought it was regarding the few folks I had referred for the expansion, as we hadn’t yet heard anything, and I had just asked him if he had an update.
He had an update alright! They had decided the original plan of adding one additional rep per territory wasn’t the best idea, instead they cut the territory lines and that meant I was losing my partner I adored, eliminating St. Louis as part of my geography; I would now have ALL Illinois, a new partner, and a new manager.
To say I was shocked and disappointed would be an understatement.
On the one hand, I was happy to have the opportunity to work for someone who I might be able to communicate with better, at the very least, and potentially trust. On the other hand, the cons seemed to outweigh that one potential win.
And now, to the breakfast meeting; the place where my current manager proceeded to bring up the past, and my current manager used my words against me from a time I met with him previously.
Two against one.
Now, here’s the thing – did I make a couple mistakes and say some things without thinking first? Yes. (my mom has been telling me to think before I speak for years!) And I owned that in a call with my manager, AND my peers. Was it in reaction to how I’ve been treated, and my perception of the bureaucratic BS happening in this district? Absolutely!
Does it make me right? No.
Does it make them right? No.
What really got me about this whole thing is that all I’ve ever been is honest. And all I’ve ever wanted was to have an open dialogue with this guy and feel like we could come to a common agreement and move forward on a respectful level.
The fact is, in my experience of him, this has not ever been able to happen. In my experience of him, he hasn’t listened to me. He has never been on my side, and has looked for ways to make me feel uncomfortable.
Have you experienced anything like this?
It’s maddening. I started to feel like I was crazy, worse yet, I felt like I couldn’t/can’t speak honestly and openly without being perceived as being negative.
IS it just me, or is that BS?!
Since I’ve been on a major Abraham Hicks kick these days, I was keenly aware of which end of the stick I was focusing my energy, and It was easy for me to rampage on the bad stuff.
I let myself feel it, talk it out, and CRY. Then I moved my body and went to nature for healing. I HAD TO! In my experience, if you don’t let emotion through your body when it’s coming up to be processed, you just keep building up against it, and it takes longer to move on. PLUS, as AH would say, “you can’t get there from there”.
I knew I couldn’t feel good, until I got through feeling bad.
As I was clearing out my inbox (yep, I do it, too😊), I came across Gabby Bernstein’s latest blog, Your Secret Superpower.
In it she speaks about vulnerability, and how being vulnerable is a willingness to expose our truth.
It reminded me of my work conversations, every time I talked to my current manager I would practice what I learned in loving communication, AKA, being vulnerable, and it was not received. In attempting to speak my truth from my experiences, I was met with ego. It was difficult to know how to communicate and actually make headway with him!
As I kept reading, I received just what I needed to shift my focus into what I WANT, rather than what I don’t want.
Gabby shared Mike Robbins blog, Are You Bringing Your Whole Self To Work? It was a post on how to be vulnerable and authentic at work.
It was such an affirming read!!
Even though my current experience is a contrast to that which I desire, I know I CAN and WILL have a work life that allows me to be vulnerable and authentic!
I mean, authenticity is EVERYTHING!! In EVERY relationship. Through therapy, and coaching I’ve created safety within myself to speak my truth, and to show up authentically ME!
If you aren’t safe to be yourself, then something has to change. Plus if you’ve checked in, you’ve owned your side of the street, AND you’re still feeling stifled – then it might be time to ask yourself, “is this person/place/thing for me?”
I know I deserve better, AND I know I can create happiness in the midst of contrast to happiness.
It’s all in what you focus on.
I loved what I heard AH say in one of their recordings that I listened to the day before. “Don’t pay attention to those people who aren’t at your table in the vortex.”
That basically translates to – don’t expend your valuable energy on people, places, things, or events that wouldn’t be sitting with you where your highest self-resides.
For me, I imagine myself sitting all regal at my golden table. And there ain’t no way in hell either of those two fools are there! That coupled with knowing that this job, these people, and these events don’t determine my worth or value, is helping me through this time of transition.
You know, I knew taking this job was the right move at the time, and I had a very strong feeling it was going to bring on more change than just a job.
I’m beginning to see I may have been right.
Lastly, here’s another great resource my amazing work partner sent me today. If you feel like you’re being bullied at work, like I do – click here to this article, Do You Feel Safe?.
What about you – have you been in a place like this before? Either at work or with a friend, boyfriend, lover?
Is it important to you to feel safe at work?