Lessons on the Job

     Melody Beattie says often the lessons we’re learning on the job reflect the issues and lessons we’re working on in our private lives. One lesson I’m getting the chance to practice on my job is “detachment.”

Many of the calls I receive at Verizon are from people who are acting stupid, greedy, or hostile. And for such small chump change. I once had a man get hostile about wanting a credit for $1.99. In another call, a person wanted a credit for 20 cents, believe it or not! At times like these, my first reaction is “This person should NOT be acting this way. And it’s my job to set him straight, change him into a better person, and fix the world.” I’m almost laughing as I write this, because it’s so insane, so futile, so codependent.

At times like these, I get to stop and practice the concept of detachment.  As Melody writes, “Detachment is releasing, or detaching from, a person with love. We mentally and emotionally disengage ourselves from unhealthy entanglements with another person’s life and responsibilities, and from problems we cannot solve.” We simply say, “Fine, be however you like to be. Live your own life however you want.” And mean it.

“Detachment is based on the concept that we can’t control people or solve problems that aren’t ours to solve, and that getting upset doesn’t help. We keep our hands off other people’s responsibilities and tend to our own instead. What a grand plan! We each mind our own business.”

If my responsibility at work is not to change or control other people, what is it? I have two: (1) to master the Call Sequencing model they want all calls to follow, and (2) to learn the technology. I feel much more peaceful and happy when I focus on things I can actually do something about.

Recovery from codependency feels so good! I can be grateful for the lessons I’m practicing on my job.


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