This is a topic that’s been heavy on my mind lately. I see so much of it in every aspect of our world. Many people have a lot of hurt and reasons to be bitter but if you’re spending time being bitter, you’re holding on to poison. You’re destroying yourself from the inside out.
Bitterness is like drinking poison and hoping the other person dies.
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Ask yourself, is being bitter helping you or making your life better?
If there is somebody who has hurt you or something you’re struggling with, let it go. You’ve got to work to get over it. One way to do this is to gain perspective on your past. I covered this topic in the Understanding Your Root System podcast and spend a lot of time in our LifePlan events gaining perspective with the attendee so we can build a better future.
For those of you that are leaders, entrepreneurs or owners, be aware that you’ve probably hurt people. You’re so focused on the business or what you’ve got going on that sometimes you forget people are involved. Feelings are involved. If you’re somebody that’s hurt somebody else, you can’t just say “Pull up your bootstraps and move on.” Take responsibility. Responsibility is, “Lets talk about how I’ve hurt you” and “Help me to understand how much I hurt you.” From there, you need to do everything you can to help heal that person and move forward.
If you’re a leader who knows you’re going to hurt somebody, by letting them go or making changes, please do yourself a favor and realize they’re a person with feelings and emotions. Whatever you’re about to do is probably going to impact them considerably more than it’s going to impact you. Think through the process. If you’re going to let somebody go (read this post first The 5 W’s of Firing and Expert Advice from Fellow Entrepreneurs), understand there’s a chance they will be hurt or bitter. Spend time thinking through it so you can be as thoughtful and pragmatic as possible. How you would want to be treated in that situation?
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Question: What advice do you have to help people get over bitterness?
5 thoughts on “35 | Is Bitterness Holding You Back?”
Wow I could have a Masters with this! I used to carry so much baggage and bitterness about ‘what I could/should have done’ that it became all consuming and really was all I focused on. I can’t remember what the tipping point for change was but I figured if I put that amount of energy in to understanding ‘OK this is what i should do differently next time’ and moving on I could deliver much more and feel much better at the end of everyday.
We have been working through a process with someone locally (who has a national influence) that also is a friend of ours.
Whether one thinks they need it or not, it has been one of the most freeing experiences of my life (initially triggered by some responses I was exhibiting).
As you indicated at the outset, life carries with it much pain…we live in a painful world at times.
if you are looking for a resource you might want to check it out. Thanks for posting this podcast.
Why would you do it? It is ALL connected!
I wrote a letter to my dad forgiving him (he died in 2005). Literal weight off my shoulders. Wrote about it here as you know Chris 🙂
Timely podcast for me, and wonderful advice. Thank you. A couple years ago a very ambitious but not very honest entrepreneur steamrolled right over me by copying my work and winning a big prize. It hurt me to the point that I almost gave up. I didn’t give up, and instead threw myself into my work with renewed vigor. But it’s been really hard to watch this person earn fame and fortune through dishonest means while my hard work and honesty doesn’t seem to get me very far. I know the bitterness I feel isn’t doing me any favors. I’ve been praying about it. If anyone else sees this and would like to pitch in some prayers, I’d appreciate it 🙂
great post and reminder for those in leadership to consider the impact of our decisions on others not only with the bigger matters such as a layoff, but even in the smaller day to decisions that we may not always see how our actions and words affects others.