Going forward,I fully realize that resisting resistance with more resistance is not only draining,this is a losing battle.
I had a conversation with a man about his ex-boss and ex-coworkers. He was angry.
“Never liked them,” he told me.
“Never liked any of them,” he said and then proceeded to tell me some of the dirty underhanded stories that went on behind the sales team.
He told me how he ran into his old boss and a few of his ex-team members at a conference. Said they were unlikable people. Said he argued with a few of them and even cursed at one of them. Said they tried to go after some of his accounts and blackball him in his industry.
I asked, “But weren’t they like this to you before you left the company?”
Agreeing with anger, he explained, “That’s why I left!”
“Then why would you be surprised?” I asked him.
“If you didn’t get along when you worked there then why would you think they would be any different now?”
He thought about this for a few minutes. He thought about this as I asked questions about the rest of the conference. Admittedly, he was so on-guard that he his attention was diverted in self-defense mode. Therefore, in his effort to fight back and find redemption from his resentment, he lost track of his reasons to be at the conference in the first place.
This is what happened when he resisted resistance with more resistance.
A woman struggled with her ex-in-laws. She saw them at her son’s game and realized they were just as rude as when she was married to her husband. She sees them and feels angry. Feels contempt.
Feels outraged that they dared to show their faces; meanwhile, her son is about to take the field at a little league game.
She sees the ex-in-laws as a reminder of a bad compromise. They are a reminder of an agreement that went wrong. They remind her of the bad times and the worst times. They also remind her of the way she settled and compromised her dreams, hopes, and aspirations by marrying the wrong man.
She saw them as an imposition. But she still cheered for her son. She cheered louder than the rest of the moms and dads. She cheered loud but why? Was this to show support or was this to show her colors and prove something? Did she yell louder to send a message? Was she trying to show her son that she loved him more? More accurately, with all this hate and resistance in her heart, was she really able to enjoy the game?
I had received a small award for something I had done a while back. But there were people I disliked in the room. I enjoyed the idea that I received a special mention and they did not. I was determined to smile in their face. However,with all this resentment, I lost sight of why I was there. Moreover, I lost sight of why I received this token of appreciation.
The idea of redemption is very real to us. To find redemption: to redeem, to relieve one’s self, to find satisfaction or salvation, to feel rescued and find deliverance from discomfort, shame, pain, guilt, or sin.
There is something, which I discuss often called the sunk cost fallacy. In business terms, this is when an investor invests money into a business and then invests even more so not to lose their initial investment. Rather than suffer the loss, the investor continues to invest and continues to lose. Instead of cutting losses, the loss factor becomes personally attributed to ego. So rather than accept this, the investor tries to redeem the loss by investing even more. Obviously, this is not a good business plan.
That being said, I see this happening in personal life and in relationships as well. In the effort to redeem ourselves from feelings of rejection, fears, discomfort, or loneliness, we sometimes invest more or we invest poorly just so we don’t have to suffer the loss.
Rather than accept the fact that our relationship was not a match, we seek to find fault. We look to place blame. We try to redeem our feelings of regret and rejection because we personalized our losses.
I have had different relationships in my life. I have suffered losses just like anyone else in this world. And I have felt rejection. I have felt betrayed. And, in my efforts to find redemption from my feelings of insecurity, I have also invested poorly and sunk more into my investment to redeem myself.
I have learned however, the sunk cost fallacy is not just a bad business plan; this is also a bad relationship plan. And by relationship, this plan stems from within before anything else.
I cannot fight the world and expect others to change. I cannot put on a brave face or laugh or act as if and pretend that all is well. Besides, even if I smiled and used humor as my method of self-preservation, still, the fact remains that there is pain or sadness in my heart.
And of all things I need to redeem; I need to redeem my heart first. Else, I will continue to invest myself poorly and I will never recover my losses. I will never find redemption and all I will do is meet resistance with more resistance and miss out on the opportunity to enjoy my life . . .