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Working for Men

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workplace-bullyI am not sure why this is, but I seem to have disproportionately bad experiences working for men.  Having women bosses has almost always been pleasant with only one exception.  But I would say that 80% of the time I’ve worked for men I always get the same thing.  They talk down to me condescendingly asking things like “Do you understand??” after they’ve just told me something as simple as how to turn on a computer, they don’t trust that I’ll be ‘competent’ from day one, they generally have negative expectation.  I feel this attitude even before the horse has been let out of the gate so I know it’s not because of any impression I’ve given, but their own prejudice.  Although highly irritating, I don’t take it personally because I know it’s usually out of insecurity, their attempt to feel important and to inferiorize me so that they can feel bigger.    While it is a valiant attempt, it rarely if ever works.  As our friend Abe Lincoln once said:

 “You can’t make a weak man strong by making a strong man weak.”

So when Mr. Boss Man is leaning over my desk explaining and re-explaining things and repeating himself as if he’s talking to a girl who is one chromosome short of a DNA helix, I just laugh inside and hold my tongue which is trying to break free from the grip of my teeth to say, “Dude, I’m 100 times smarter than you so take your insulting orders and go hang out your fellow investment bankers if you want to go peacock.” 

The women I’ve worked for recognize my brainpower right away, inherently trust me, appreciate me and best of all, don’t have any weird quirks about power-tripping or ego frailty.  It’s so easy and simple.  Some people have had bad experiences with women claiming them to be catty, manipulative, calculating and backstabbing in the workplace.  Fortunately, I seem to repel those types of women.

To be fair, it’s not taking much responsbility to get on a blog and bitch about how I am treated by men in the workplace.  To some degree, I am inviting their treatment.  Why?  Because I am placing myself in a subordinate position.  I’m hiding IQ points and my true talents underneath my belt.  Why would I expect people to automatically recognize just how fabulous I am?  Why am I so afraid to go center stage and shine?  Why do I have to keep hiding – and then worse yet – playing victim over how people aren’t fully recognizing what I have to offer or dismissing me.  Maybe I’m dismissing myself!

Here’s another quote that resonates with me.  It is widely recognized as attributed to Nelson Mandela, but it is actually a Marianne Williamson quote, that Nelson Mandela was famous for having recited:

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

So by passing the buck to these condescending men I have worked for, I am conveniently absolving myself of responsibility for doing something about it.  That’s not gonna fly.  This is a great quote.  I think when we stifle ourselves, quiet our voice or gifts, hide them, or generally become ‘less than’ we really are remaining in Ego.  We have no business hiding our gifts underneath our burkas ladies.  This is 2009, not 1904.  Let’s become everything we are and do so without apologies.  To not actualize ourselves to the nth degree is an insult to God’s artwork.

We all have a spark of the God DNA.  To be divine is to take responsibility rather than succumb to victimhood.   To be the cause rather than the effect.  To be proactive rather than reactive.  To act from our soul (from a place of sharing our gifts) rather than our Ego (to be afraid of failure or rejection).  To transform our selfish, fear-based desires to a greater desire to give and be willing to humble and humiliate ourselves to connect to the soul and the God-source.

And here I thought I was going to bitch about things I couldn’t control today.  Sounds like I just called myself out.  LOL.  It’s nice to cut yourself down to size every once in awhile so you can grow even bigger.

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