Practice the Art of Forgiveness at Work and in Life

The wise woman in me asks why it takes so long to understand familiar principles. Does it take a certain amount of life experience to understand the veracity of simple truths? Sometimes we are too busy rushing through the days to consider the truth about right and wrong and how healing must include the act of forgiveness.

As I sit and contemplate the work issues women discuss with me in coaching sessions, I know that often the conversation is about a “wrong” or “hurt” that happened years ago in a different setting. Because a woman still carries this wound, it continues to color what she experiences today. She may avoid certain opportunities, responsibilities, and future happiness because of a negative experience in the past. Why is it so hard to say to ourselves, “Yes what happened was not right but I am going to put it behind me and move forward?” I am going to forgive the people involved. Is it our egos?

Yesterday I wrote about self-reflection and contemplation as gifts and now I am saying the practice of reflection can also help you deal with adversity. Today I am talking about the unavoidable work conflicts we all experience at one time or another and how we move forward.

One of the chapters in my book is about conflict in the workplace, and my advice is it is best to always remember your work life s not your total life and a business decision should not be seen as a personal decision. A difference of opinion about how to do the job may seem like a personal attack or that the person in the conflict does not value you. However as critical as the conflict may seem in the short-term, ask yourself will this difference of opinion and who wins be as important to me a year from now? Does this conflict impact my life in a major way? Listen to your inner voice.

Don’t be a victim in conflict but learn how to let the less important issues become part of the scenery and not stop the entire play. I counsel that often you will be a better person to carry a memory of a conflict’s issues forward but not give the memory permission to change your life. You may be further ahead by simply putting the conflict away and walking forward.

As difficult as this advice is to both give and receive……sometimes it is best to walk forward armed with knowledge but open to the world of possibilities. Vow to not make the same mistake twice. Knowing yourself and your values helps in any conflict at work or in life.

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