Ravings and Rantings

Welcome to my cloud! It's got a nice silver lining somewhere.....Some ranting, some raving--mostly positive stuff,lots of jokes (I can't stay serious). Nothing going on here that a pina colada or mohito can't fix.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

In The Lion's Den

It's the place where I've grown these past 14 years.

Started off knowing nothing (much), selected by a wise and compassionate man who needed an analytical brain and people skills in his group. At the time, the group's production was low, its external communications virtually nil.

Who did the man hire? A middle aged woman recuperating from traumatic treatment at the hands of several brutal managers, known throughout the community for their viciousness. A woman who wanted to return to analysis, people work and writing. Who had a good, reliable reputation for those skills.

She remained there for over a decade, building knowledge, sharing it with others, and winning five awards in the process over the years. Raising the profile of the group by daily communications, working in cross-organization groups, and mainly by being herself.

There is a downside to this picture. Competence and strength can be interpreted as threatening by the insecure. Patience and time solved most of these issues.

Now, a new, clever yet highly insecure and angry force rules the organization in which she works. Overcome by exhaustion (caused by four months' of 3 hours' nightly sleep) and fear (with the latest and most knowledgeable of the managers having been removed), she was ordered to rest. Today she contemplates tomorrow's return, knowing that the cia (clever, insecure, angry) does not welcome her return, and that showing any emotion will only serve to inflame his emotions.

He is angry. He does not like or trust her. And he is her boss.

Anger's root is fear. Fear has many causes, chief among them lack of information. Perhaps a closer working relationship will resolve the situation, at least temporarily. At the moment, each is fearful of the other.

Fourteen years is a long time to work in any one area. She is six years away from retirement; he, one to two years. She must be patient, she must learn to suppress quick retorts and emotional reactions. A trusted friend of longstanding recently reminded her that the objective is to win, not fight. She does not want to fight, she wants to work. He likely wants to dominate and control, be assured of her obeisance.

Whether working in the immediate environment or waiting for job opportunities to develop, she must be patient, she must work hard, she must take orders while remaining within the boundaries of the policies involved. She cannot depend on others to resolve the situation or rescue her, she herself must structure the tools and paths.

This is a life lesson.


  • At 6/12/2005 01:23:00 PM, Blogger tshsmom said…

    Atta girl!! Just keep breathing deeply.

  • At 6/12/2005 01:37:00 PM, Blogger Bridget Jones said…

    Thanks tshsmom, sure will! I just read recently why deep breathing works (it sends some kind of signal to emotion-causing parts of the brain).

    Cool, huh?

    TY again, Bridg

  • At 6/12/2005 02:18:00 PM, Blogger tshsmom said…

    I always figured it worked cuz I couldn't sob or curse while doing it! Now I know there's a scientific explanation. Cool!

  • At 6/12/2005 05:30:00 PM, Blogger Adrian said…

    Serotonin is good for dealing with stress and depression.

    How to increase serotonin levels? Bananas.

    Eat bananas every day and your mood will improve significantly. People in good moods are less likely to enter into arguments/conflict.

    Use it/don't use it... : )

  • At 6/12/2005 06:36:00 PM, Blogger Bridget Jones said…

    Thank you Adrian T--I didn't know that before and am quite grateful for the knowledge.

    so a banana a day for me and HIM too!


  • At 6/12/2005 08:08:00 PM, Blogger .: raven :. said…

    bananas ... bananas .. for everyone.

    i know you're dreading ... but i like your self-talk. you're there to work, not fight. you're there to get things done, not embroil yourself in his insecurity and drama.

    hold tight to your beliefs because you are right ... hang tough .. don't let him get the better of you.

    think positive ... that something will come along very soon .. or something will happen that maybe sends him on his way.

    no one should have to endure this type of stress at the office ... does Canada not have labor and employment laws? here in the US you could sue him for harassment and hostile work environment. you should look into this because this has adversely affected your health.

    and if none of that works, give him a beat down in the parking lot. :)

  • At 6/12/2005 08:24:00 PM, Blogger nutty said…

    he he he hooo he he he hooo
    Some breathing exercises for you : )

  • At 6/12/2005 11:11:00 PM, Blogger Bridget Jones said…

    Thank you VERY much Raven, this kind of advice always helps.
    Summing up (mostly your advice):
    -breathe (tummy breathe)
    -work not fight
    -positive attitude (look for new place)
    -harassment as an option to fighting (the system here is very biased towards managers)
    -bananas up the whazzoo! At least for him.

    Thanks again, I'm gonna think about that banana thing all day :)) wicked grin

    hugs from your dreading but anticipatory pal Bridg

  • At 6/12/2005 11:11:00 PM, Blogger Bridget Jones said…

    Undies! You're a mom? Say it ain't so!

    Not a judegement, just kinda surprised me there


  • At 6/13/2005 08:37:00 AM, Blogger Wandering Coyote said…

    I very much enjoyed the way you wrote this post.

    There is a life lesson in everything.

    My advice: don't take anything personally. None of the boss's shit has anything to do with you. His actions are only a projection of his own experience and reality, and none of it has anything to do with you at all.

  • At 6/13/2005 11:39:00 PM, Blogger TaiChimp said…

    This is Sagepaper

    I think anger is a manifestation of hurt. If you think about what angers you, you will find the provocations are sources of hurt. This fits with your observation of the relationship between fear and anger. First, fear is a source of pain which could be manifested as anger. Second, fear would force a person to manifest anger, whereas trust might allow the person to show you the hurt.

  • At 6/13/2005 11:45:00 PM, Blogger Bridget Jones said…

    Thank you WC! When I sat down to write that post (as with all of them) it just came out onto the keyboard. Kinda surprised myself.

    and thank you for the reminder about what the negativity is really about. I do tend to personalize everything, wrongly.

    Excellent advice...Bridg

  • At 6/13/2005 11:47:00 PM, Blogger Bridget Jones said…

    Hi Sagepaper and thank you for the observations (man where did all you folks GET this knowledge? It's fantastic) on fear, hurt and anger.

    I'm sorry that I didn't get to read your comment until tonight, but I won't forget it. If/When you read tonight's post, you'll see a demonstration of how right you are.

    Thanks again, very much, Bridg

  • At 6/13/2005 11:47:00 PM, Blogger Bridget Jones said…

    p.s. Adrian T, I had a banana split for dinner tonight.

    NO kidding.


  • At 6/13/2005 11:54:00 PM, Blogger TaiChimp said…

    This is Sagepaper.

    I have studied martial arts -- Tai Chi and Kung Fu. There is a great deal of mental training accompanying the physical training. It is difficult not to start seeing ways you can apply some of the principals of physical fighting to other struggles. This is exemplified by the popularity of Sun Tzu's *Art of War* among business executives.

    There is something nasty you can do to your tormentor: become somewhat of a brown-noser and yes-man. Without his catching-on, work on building his ego. Eventually, egomania will cause him to be overconfident and reckless. He will make a big mistake, and pay dearly for it.

    In Judeo-Christian terms,, this is summed up by, "Pride goeth before the fall." There is also the common saying, "The bigger they are the harder they fall." If you want him to fall, and hard, build his ego to a maniacal, self-deluded state. In the meantime, this saves you hassles, and offers you an inner grin as you follow his progress on the path to destruction.

    I had to do this once to a senior coworker who was scapegoating me. It worked better than I could have imagined! I actually had to reverse engines aand save his job. I didn't want to get him fired, I just wanted him to lay-off.

    I never said I wasn't a bit evil.

  • At 6/13/2005 11:59:00 PM, Blogger Bridget Jones said…

    WOW Sagepaper...the patience that took. Not sure I could follow that particular path but I am learning to keep my mouth shut, which has a lot to do with what you advise.

    If someone doesn't want your advice, and if all it will do is get you into trouble, why go there? So that's what I did today and my life was easier.

    I guess before, when I kept 'mothering' people like that (i.e. warn them before they walked onto landmines) maybe I was preventing them from learning?

    Anyway will be staying quiet more and keeping your words in the back of my head.


  • At 6/14/2005 04:19:00 PM, Blogger The Zombieslayer said…

    Competence and strength can be interpreted as threatening by the insecure.

    You definitely hit the nail on the head there. It's sad that in some corporations, if you're doing exceptionally well, someone else will try to bring you down to their level. Not a good feeling when you're hated for being successful.

  • At 6/14/2005 06:48:00 PM, Blogger Bridget Jones said…

    I'm sorry that you've learned that lesson too, ZS. Did I ever mention that I used to work for Generous Motors? Yup in Engineering. First female in there that didn't type. And BOY are you right about the corporate types. Yikes. Four years was enough of that stuff for me...don't know how others stand it.



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