Performance Improvement Ideas

Be transformed by the renewing of your mind.*

"Feeling Stuck? Try Forgiveness."

October 16, 2009 reviewed by Mike Strawbridge

I have been feeling a bit stuck lately.  Catharine Ponders in her books on health and prosperity says that the stuck feeling is often caused by unforgiveness.

I have been searching for signs of unforgiveness in my life.  I noticed that I have a few small bumps on my skin.  Theses according to Louise Hay are also signs of unforgiveness.

Forgiveness has nothing to do with the person I need to forgive. It only concerns me and my reaction to what happened.  I have to focus on my own feelings.  There is no need for me to go out and find these people and let them know that I have forgiven them, I only need to adjust my attitude about them.

I have done forgiveness work through my studies with Edwine Gaines who says that debt is a sign of unforgiveness.   Since for the first time in my life I have some debt that bothers me, I see this as another sign that I need to do some forgiveness work.

I suspect that since I am mostly stuck in my financial life, that the person or thing I need to forgive is related to my career.  The rest of my life seems to be going pretty well.  I have most every thing I want, I just can’t seem to make money or advance my business.

So I am looking back into my past for hurts or regret to see where I might find someone who needs to be forgiven.  The first one that comes to mind is my old boss at Westvaco.  He and I had some philosophical differences in management style.  I let him get under my skin several times and I guess I still have some anger issues toward him.

I now look back and see that there are many lessons that I can learn from that experience.  I can learn to value the differences in people as Steven Covey recommends.  I can follow the Ho Opona Pona method and look for what part of me was represented by that person.

His methods were tough but effective so I can see where sometimes I ma tough and inflexible in my approach to a problem.  My recent knee pain is an indicator of my inflexibility.  So I can be appreciative of the way he showed me the contrast between a flexible manager who respected people and his inflexible style where people were always degraded.

Another thing that I should have learned form him was not to try to please other people.  He was impossible to please.  I worked for him for many years before I figured this out.  However I remember feeling the freedom of release when I realized that I would never please him and that I should just do what I felt was best and stop trying to please him.  His words of condemnation no longer had any sting when I did not care about his opinion of me.

Strangely although he never seemed to like me or approve of my work, I always got good salary reviews and adequate compensation.  He always claimed that he gave me the maximum raise he was allowed to give.

So I now release any feeling of anger or regret that may still linger in my mind.  I know that he was acting just the way he thought was best to motivate me.  He apparently thought it worked.  However the next manager proved that I was much more productive under a different style.  And that experience taught me to value the contrast.

I would never have know how much more productive I could be under a freer management system if I had not experienced the constraints of a strict and forceful manager.  I can now be appreciative of both experiences.  There is really nothing to forgive but since I still have feeling that the previous manager is wrong in his treatment of me I have to use forgiveness and release these feelings.

One other incident that comes to mind is my failed restaurant experience.  I had gone in to business with a partner who wanted to manage a restaurant and needed financing.  She had plenty of experience working at a very successful restaurant and wanted to start one of her own.

However in both our naivety she was inexperienced in the ways of business, and I did not keep enough control of the situation.  I did not ask enough of the right questions.

Just a few months into the project I was forced to separate her from the business.  I was left with a huge investment that I really did not want and no manager.  I struggled on and threw more good money after the bad until I finally had to cut my losses and close the business.

I still blame her for the financial loss that I still have not really recovered from.  So now I have to look for the good in the situation and work to forgive her.

I am sure she does not feel she did anything wrong.  She was just young and impulsive and I am sure she felt she was doing the best she could do.  She needed more guidance than I gave her.  I needed to have been more like my old boss and controlled her situation better.  However, I could have still praised her for the things she did well but stopped her from doing the things she could not handle.

I now release all feelings of anger or resentment toward her.  I know that now as I enter into business partnerships and joint ventures to ask questions and be prepared for handling things should the other person not be capable of handling their end of the deal.

I am still looking to see what part of me she represented.  I guess it was my impulsive side.  I want to be free to spend other people’s money with no consequences.  I want to be able to get by on my attractiveness and not be responsible for my actions.

I am appreciative of all the lessons I have learned.  I have met a lot of interesting people along the way.  I am learning to love all the various parts of myself.  I know that part of this life’s journey is to experience a variety of conditions so that I will truly know what it is that I want to create more of.

As I look at forgiveness through the lens of Steve Pavlina’s Truth love and power model, I see a new way of looking at the situation.  The real truth is that I was never hurt by these people.  It was only my perception of the situation.  I chose the consequences through my actions.  I did the best I understood that the time and even if I would choose differently today, I did what I did and I have learned from it.

I have the power to release these old thought patterns and create new thoughts based on what I have learned.  I have the power to not let these old thoughts hinder my forward progress.

And though love I can look at all these situations differently.  I see that we are all connected and that we cannot be separated.  If I meet these people on the street today, I hope that I can great them as friends or at least old teachers and thanks them for the lessons I learned.  I have no reason to hate or even dislike these people.  I must love them for they are part of me.  They simply remind me of the parts of me that I am not too happy with.

However, now, I am free to choose how I will thing and consequently I can choose how I feel.  The truth is, I have the power to let go of these old hurts and move forward in my life.  I can learn the lessons that these events taught me and not have to relive them again.  I have the power to love myself and know that I deserve to have a successful business.

I have many valuable skills and much valuable knowledge to share with the world.  Holding back due to these past hurts would be irresponsible.  I must share my skills with the world for the world will be a better place because of my work.

Mike Strawbridge October 16, 2009