When something frustrating happens, it’s natural to go out and garner support around how we were wronged.
When we see injustice, of course, we naturally come to the rescue of the victim.
When we feel disadvantaged, of course we get angry and defend ourselves. It’s important to stick up for yourself and fight for what you deserve… right?
These are examples of very natural reactions to frustrating situations. What most people don’t realize is that they also tend to create a trap of ongoing life drama that is very hard to move out of. The default viewpoint for many of us is that there is a victim, an aggressor, and a rescuer in each and every one of life’s challenges. But also incredibly limiting to our own success at work and in life.
The problem is that even when situations change, we always seem to arrive back at the same place of being in constant conflict, trying to rescue someone else, or being the victim. The subconscious ego believes this is the way to navigate life and get what you want.
Yet, this can be one of the most destructive ways to live our lives. There is “always something” in our lives that creates an endless cycle of unhappiness. We just can’t seem to figure out why there is never a constant flow of peace and tranquility in our lives. Life is about being constantly stressed, full of anxiety, and missing joy.
How do we get wrapped up in drama?
A friend recently shared The Power of TED with me, a very easy read that explains how this drama-filled dynamic dis-empowers us from getting what we want out of life. We believe that by assuming the victim role, we will be supported. By helping others who are in turmoil, we will become very important. By “sticking up for ourselves” we will get our way.
In my past, I spent many years where I would get caught in the middle of drama, particularly as the role of the rescuer.
I desperately wanted everyone in my life to be happy and made huge compromises while self-sacrificing my own needs as well. It felt like I could never do enough, and would drop everything to cater to those who were upset. This activity constantly absorbed my attention away from growing my business, living my life to the fullest, and taking care of our customers. And guess what? The demands of those who were creating the drama only increased, creating havoc on the business.
Over time I found that feeding the drama just made it continue, and many times worsen as it bred entitlement in company. Agreed-upon solutions to problems were only temporary fixes and then the drama dynamic would resurface or show up in a different form. At times I would move from rescuer to victim from feeling like I couldn’t win, or I’d match aggressive energy in a non-productive way which fueled gossip. No matter what my response was, the precedence was set by my constant rescuing.
Then, within a very short period of time the people in my world shifted as I switched career paths. Some stayed in my life, some inauthentic relationships turned – and it was the very best thing that could have taken place. It allowed my business and life to shed negativity, for me to refocus on growth and positive action, and for those who remained to shine.
Through this tough experience, I learned an incredible life-long lesson. I now see myself as the creator of a solution, coaching others into their own solution, or challenger of the status quo in difficult situations…. always keeping in mind the greater good of the collective effort.
Every day empowerment becomes an embedded value in the work I do. Whether I am consulting to a national brand, or I am coaching a small business owner, I conduct open, honest communication with a sharp focus on the greater mission and vision we are looking to achieve together. My role is to care for the business by driving strategic initiatives in a way that honors my values, keeps others accountable, and then the business (not me!) takes care of everyone in it.
As the this new energy has come to the surface, absolutely unbelievable business opportunities have emerged I could have never dreamed of and positive people simply just showed up – as if they are magnetically attracted to the joy that is radiating from my life.
This has allowed us to move into growth mode with a positive, happy work environment. I’ve happily hung up my “Rescuer” responsibilities. And you know what? The company I work with and for have exponentially catapulted forward as a result. There has never been so much excitement and unity around the future vision for our organization.
When you meet the top performers in life, business, sports (and every single guest on the Joypreneur podcast) you’ll find that they see themselves as creators of their circumstances. They use techniques like visualization, strategic planning, and affirmations to set their intention on the results they want to produce.
They will challenge and coach the other people in their lives toward a shared desired outcome, all while empowering them to be better versions of themselves. And they will never get stuck in the middle of other people’s drama. The find a way to rise above it, seeing themselves as the creator of their own circumstances instead of emotionally reacting to every challenging situation in a way that feeds it.
As I’ve assumed the role of creator and shifted my leadership techniques, I now see myself as a coach, mentor, and challenger of limited thinking. This is not in replacement of belief system I have in God, but as a facilitator of His good work. Servant leadership is my mantra, and empowerment has become the tool for from which to take flight.
Question: Have you ever found yourself in an endless cycle of drama, or know people who do? How did you break out of it at home or in your work? Leave a comment below! I’d love to hear.