Friday's we celebrate failure and its role in creating success.
Yippee, skippee. The platitude sounds great, I think, somedays.
Let's get real. Let's get past platitudes.
What happens when my failure ruins your day? Or yours, mine? Someone's failure ruins someone's accomplishments that had been built on success to that point.
Then what happens? It's at that point that a failure becomes a stepping stone to success....or not.
That point is called the forgiveness point.
Forgiving makes it possible for the next failure. Forgiving says "you clearly didn't create this outcome on purpose. So, let's step back, laugh a bit (ok, cry a bit or yell, let's be honest.) and figure out what went wrong, right and how to avoid the former."
That point, the forgiveness point, makes that next failure come quicker. Why? Well, because you're working where you can fail. And it's not considered a failure. Neither are you. And you both know you'll learn from it.
The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong. —Mahatma Gandhi (1869 - 1948)
He's right. You have to be VERY strong, very resilient, cery compassionate to forgive.
Yippee, skippee, again.
Sounds so simple. Like creating engaged employees. Everyone knows it's the right thing to do. So few of us, me included, do it well. (Why'm I'm writing this? Part processing, part catharsis, part reaching out to those who may be on the cusp of this step...this forgiveness step.)
I'm acquiring my skills on this forgiveness point. ( And frankly, I've given lots of learning opportunities to others...) It's tough. Very tough. For real forgiveness, not happy-face forgiveness, let's-will-ourselves-to-say-the-right-thing forgiveness.
I started as a once-burned, twice-gone, personality. Now, I'm up to a thrice-burned...I'm hesitating person. The trick is finding the balance between forgiveness and recognition of an unsolvable situation, person.
And the vengeance...it's easing. Not out of love. It's easing because it's an all-consuming emotion, it's never productive, it's satisfaction is VERY temporary (though ...sweet) and what your left with is...very little.
My solutions right now for forgiveness are simple:
* Vent. It's healthy. Vent my anger. BUT, where and with whom it leaves no lasting impression. Venting at the source of my anger is a misnomer. The anger's in me. Their actions only triggered it. I usually go outside or for a run or a long drive with the music up loud.
* Avoid the source. Avoid the person(s) who provoked the anger until I'm stronger. Life doesn't always allow this timing. But...if possible. Regardless, the same situation will arise until I'm strong enough to deal. Trust me. You'll fail until you learn.
* Don't be seduced by anger's brilliance. I've been seduced many times with my seeming brilliance when I'm angry. Not so. That's the lure of anger. Self-righteous, white-hot, mentally acute, but missing the bigger picture (always).
* Perspective. Get it. I'm talking about assessing the situation, the persons involved, the outcome, everyone's motivation...and mine. That last one is most important: mine, my motivation, my role, my actions...Ultimately, I created the scenario where my own anger became an obstacle.
* Then Forgiveness comes naturally. It's real. It's healthy. I'm stronger for the next one.
There's a good read on Forgiveness and Failure at Innovative Brains, Walking The Forgiveness Path. It's where I found the quote. The post offers some 'fuel for forgiveness' and ways to not fuel vengeance. It's a good read...it stirred this confession.