Minnesotans tend to prefer freezing temps in the winter. Snow is easier to clear than rain, which inevitably turns to ice. On a recent warm December day, I spent hours clearing our rain-turned ice driveway—lots of time to think about things such as the California live-in nanny who refused to leave after being fired. The mom seemed high strung; not a fun boss. The nanny had been involved in 37 civil court cases and would probably sue the family. She hadn’t left as she was wronged.
The “squatter-nanny” led me to Matthew 10:13, where Jesus instructs His disciples to share their peace with believers. If they enter a home or town and are unwelcome, they should leave, shake the dust off their feet, and peace will be returned. I considered civil court cases where people spent hours and hours fighting over a few hundred dollars. They’d probably be ahead selling aluminum cans or umping a couple of little league baseball games. I looked at the gorgeous sunset and had a revelation. Chopping ice was boring, but led me to that beauty. People suing, fighting, holding onto anger, and ruing over problems, unfairness, etc., are looking backward and are often missing beauty, opportunity, and peace. This includes negative issues with past jobs.
Job seekers don’t often seek me if their work lives are perfect. They may be in a stressful situation, been wrongly fired, had critical bosses, judgmental coworkers, unrealistic expectations, pay problems, been injured, and more. I feel for them.
Maybe you’ve been dealt great blows and even have legitimate legal claims. I am not an attorney, nor trying to dissuade you from taking appropriate action. Job seekers want my help to ensure their future is better than their past. So I am sharing that it’s almost impossible to improve your career path if you are enmeshed in past job problems.
Forgiveness has zero to do with the other party. It has 100% to do with you, and although hard, is very freeing. Leaving negativity aside lifts you. Living a healthy life, surrounding yourself with positive people, volunteering, etc., brings more joy than “deserved” money, smearing someone or a company, and/or getting a judge to agree you’ve been wronged. If possible, think: “I tried to bring happiness and help my past coworkers, company and boss. For reasons I couldn’t control, I wasn’t welcome. That’s their problem and not mine. I am now going to shake the dust of that past career woe off my feet. Then the problems will remain theirs, peace will be restored to me. I will move on, my future career looks bright, and I can watch many beautiful sunrises and sunsets.” Think of the squatter nanny. What if she devoted the same efforts towards learning new skills, meeting great people and moving up in her career as she did towards lawsuits? She probably wouldn’t be in her 60s, jobless, living in her car.
Good luck job searching,
Elizabeth Husom, GCDF