Coworker Conflict: How to Productively Deal with Disagreement

“Call out culture” is becoming more common. People used to pussyfoot around, avoiding saying how they really felt under the veil of “politeness.”

coworker conflict


They might have been passive aggressive about it…or they might have suppressed it and exploded later. They avoided confrontation, especially with coworkers or friends. Now, in the last few years, particularly online, there’s a shift to expressing how we feel more often—for some of us at least, we’ve seemingly found our “inner New Yorker.”

You might think this is unhealthy or a bad thing—but really, it is and it isn’t. It’s all about the intentionality behind your “call out.”

Speaking up, expressing your needs, wants and yearnings, and setting boundaries—these are all positive actions. They’re the fundamentals of engagement and expression. If it’s done with honesty and with intention, engagement is a force for good. Engagement brings about mutual respect, positive change, and even transformation.

So find your voice! Let it out! Stand up for yourself and refuse to be a doormat. Refuse to get sucked into someone’s drama! If someone treats you badly, saying, “Hey, I don’t deserve this” doesn’t make you a jerk, it makes you stronger. (Hey, if they ignore or dismiss you, then they’re the a**hole.)


Speak up! Stand up!
Engage in conflict and don’t back down.


We all want to be seen in the truth of who we really are. We want others to recognize us, to KNOW us and respect us. Engaging with another person is about reciprocity—they see you and you see them. You’re both acknowledging the humanity that exists within each of us. You’re both trying to understand each other and find common ground. It doesn’t mean you acquiesce or even agree about the topic, but you’re both listening and obeying the rules of engagement.

When Someone Doesn’t Stick to the Rules

On the flip side, there are cases, such as with social media, where there’s a perception that we can say whatever the hell we want. Things we would have never said to someone’s face, we now type as a comment on Facebook. We say things we’d never say in front of a crowd. Everyone has an opinion (and you know what they say); but under the veil of anonymity, we start to get it all out regardless of the stink.

There’s a balance. There’s making an intelligent argument, and engaging in discussion and dialogue. There are ways to fight fair, but “yelling about it” on the Internet is one-sided and disengaging. Hurling one-sided insults, threats or cuts is no way to affect positive change.

While technology can be a great tool, as it helps us learn, grow, connect, and expand our world, it can also be a place where people forget the consequences of their actions. People get themselves into real trouble—career-ending trouble—because they can stupidly forget that everything you post online has real-world repercussions.

Similarly, in the workplace, we might hear of collusion and things said behind closed doors. These have repercussions, too.

The “he said/she said” drama that often goes on in offices can cause real damage. Entertaining this type of drama only sucks you into the pattern of blame, shame and justification. One person becomes the victim, one person becomes the rescuer, and one person is the aggressor. We call this the “drama triangle.”

If this sounds familiar to you, maybe you grew up in a family where this was the norm or maybe you see these patterns in your marriage and in other relationships. The drama triangle is a repeating pattern that’s easy to get stuck in, and it can be hard to extricate yourself from the pattern.

Avoid the Drama Triangle

Learning instead, the rules of engagement, avoiding blame, shame and justification, and fighting fair can all help us keep things above board and moving forward. We talk more in depth about these important rules in our book The Heart of the Fight, in which you can learn to fight fairly and productively.

If someone at work does or says something you don’t like or agree with—let’s say they take credit for a project you did—do you discuss it with them directly?

  • Do you make snide comments during the rest of the presentation?
  • Do you give them the cold shoulder after?
  • Do you go around to your supervisor to blame them, so you can be rescued as the victim?
  • Do you post a “vent” about it on your social media page?
  • Do you plead your case to your coworkers, so they can swoop in and rescue you?
  • When the roles are reversed, do you swoop in on their behalf?

Direct action is always more productive than passive aggressive or “hidden middle finger” actions. Better yet, it keeps you out of the drama triangle.

When you go into a discussion, assume responsibility for your role and action in the situation, and assume goodwill on the part of your coworker. This can be a challenge, especially if you’ve built them up to be the villain. In reality, they may be coming from a place of insecurity or they might not even realize the consequence of their over-step.

When we go into a situation with guns ablaze and accusations flying, we can set ourselves up for a conversation that goes nowhere. Instead, remember one of the most important rules of engagement is to accentuate the positive. Another important rule? No one in any situation gets/takes more than 50% of the blame.

Does that mean it’s your fault if someone took credit for your work or if someone else instigates the argument? It’s not your “fault,” but it’s your responsibility to set appropriate boundaries, to communicate your expectations, and to express yourself in a direct manner now.


YOU are responsible for your own happiness—100% of it! If you’re unhappy with your job, your situation, or the way something was handled, it’s up to you to change it.


We often forget this, when we blame our coworkers for our dissatisfaction and frustrations at the office. It’s up to us to address the situation and express our feelings. We can then move forward or change our role (or even liberate ourselves from a negative situation), but we need to take back the power as being our own.

If you are unhappy with a situation at work, YOU have the power to change it. You have the power to engage productively and proactively. Speak up, stand up, and call out.

You don’t have to be rude—in fact, productive engagement is often the opposite. If you’re expressing yourself using the rules of engagement, you’ll approach it from a place of accentuating the positive, assuming responsibility, and not passing off the blame. This sets you up for a conversation that can move things forward and make things better.

So if you’re biting your tongue, or venting about your coworkers on social media or to the others in your office: stop. It’s time to man (or woman) up and engage the situation head on!

For more on how to get what you want out of you career, your relationships and your life as a whole, please visit us at the Wright Foundation website. Remember YOU have the power to change your world!


About the Author

 

Dr. Bob Wright is an internationally recognized visionary, educator, program developer, leadership and sales executive, best-selling author and speaker. He is a co-founder of Wright and the Wright Graduate University.


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Wright Living is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.

Dating After 40:
What’s Holding You Back?

Dating can seem daunting at any age. Remember your first date? Talk about awkward, right?

Is dating after 40 sound unappealing or scary to you? Do you ever wonder what is really holding you back?


For most of us, after a certain age, dating doesn’t seem much more appealing now than it did when we were dealing with acne and braces. Whether you’re trying to get on the scene after a divorce or after the end of a long-term relationship, it’s hard—especially just getting out there.

The first battle is simply knowing HOW to get back out there. You can feel ready, but what do you do? Wear a shirt that says ready to date (yikes) or ask a friend to fix you up (maybe the t-shirt idea sounds better after all)…?

You might be interested in dating websites geared toward older adults. Or you might try some of the more popular dating sites, as they cater to all age ranges and many interest groups. For some of us beyond the millennial generation, though, online dating might not be within our comfort zone…yet.

So how do you meet people? Dating in the workplace usually isn’t such a great idea. Maybe your friends are mostly married and in relationships. There are networking events and ways to open up a dialogue, but for those of us not accustomed to putting ourselves out there…it can be a challenge.


Listen: if you’re ready, GO FOR IT! Stop making excuses and jump in!


No, you don’t have to wear a t-shirt or ask your coworker to hook you up, but you will have to be open about the fact that you’re single and looking to mingle. You might want to try to dip in your toe online, or you might feel more comfortable networking face-to-face. Embrace it!

Guess what? It’s fun!

Dating is an opportunity to really play as an adult. It’s a chance to meet people and test what you like and what you don’t like. You can learn more about how you interact with totally different personality types and people you would have never considered 15 or 20 years ago. You don’t have to marry them…or even LIKE them! Just engage and start meeting new people.

The world is before you! If you’re ready, GO FOR IT!

The Advantages of Dating at an Older Age

There are a few things you can do to shift your mentality a little when it comes to dating and opening yourself up to new opportunities and experiences. The first thing to recognize is that, in many ways your age and experience works to your advantage.

You’ve already let go of some of the dating “myths” that plague people in their teens and early adulthood. You know there’s no such thing as “the one” and there’s no Prince Charming (or Princess) riding in to swoop you up on his or her white horse and ride away, right?

For some who’ve been on the dating scene for a little while, you might be laughing a little—fairytale romance DEFINITELY doesn’t exist!

In truth, though, who would want that anyway? Love is beautiful in its own right. Relationships with all their messiness, their awkwardness, their burps and (yes, I’ll say it) farts, and who knows what else… They’re full of messiness. There are great things in the mess though, and you know that. You’re not afraid to get a little messy. You know it’s worth it.

Is it a Love Connection?

One of the keys is to assume good intentions and look beyond the superficial. You don’t have to make a love connection on a date, but try to see the other person for who they are. What are THEY looking for? What are your similarities and what are your differences?

Another great thing about dating in the adult world is you’re able to get down to some of the nitty-gritty pretty quickly. In our 20s, we’re often playing the field—trying to figure out what we want and ourselves. We aren’t always honest and upfront with dates and we might avoid tough conversations altogether.

Now you’re ready to put it out there. If someone doesn’t want teenagers in their life and you have two, well, that might be a deal breaker, so you can get it out of the way right away. If someone knows they love to sit at home and zone out in front of the television and you love to travel, you can quickly cross that off the list. If your likes and lifestyles are different but compatible that’s okay, if they’re different and diametrically opposed, that’s okay too—but maybe you’re not a match. You might be great pals but maybe you’re not right for romance. The important thing is to be honest!

Also, as an adult in your 40s, 50s or even 60s, you’ve come to know what you want and expect. You know yourself, your limits, your strengths and your challenges. There’s a great deal of confidence and self-assuredness that comes naturally with age, even if you don’t feel self-assured or confident in every moment.

As an adult, you aren’t about pretense and putting on a façade when you get to know a new person. You can jump right in and be real. After all, if you’ve got kids or eight cats or stretchmarks or a bald spot, you might as put it out there now. There’s no reason to put on a false front and that in itself can be empowering. You know who you are, and you’re working to get what YOU want out of life. The hope is you’ll meet someone who’s the same!

Experience and Connections

So maybe you won’t find love tomorrow. Or maybe you will! Who knows?

The fun thing about dating is it opens up a world of possibility. You can meet new people, make new connections, and form new friendships. You get to try out different relationships and interactions with new people and think, “Is this someone I could grow with?”

Look for those who are willing to continue to learn and engage with you. Find someone who’s not afraid to explore the messy world of relationships. You might just find that you enjoy yourself.

So if you’re asking, should I bother dating? The answer is YES and don’t hold back! Our lives are fuller and richer with more experiences, more connections and more friendships. Meeting new people can only benefit you and help you get even more out of life!

Jump in and see where things take you!

For more on engaging, getting the most from your experiences, and grabbing life by the horns, visit the Wright Foundation. Go forth, engage, and ignite your world!

 


About the Author

Dr. Judith Wright

Dr. Judith Wright is a media favorite, sought-after inspirational speaker, respected leader, peerless educator, bestselling author, & world-class coach. She is a co-founder of Wright and the Wright Graduate University.


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Wright Living is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.

Parenting & Fulfillment: Embracing the “Being” of Parenthood

What does it really mean to be a mother or a father? What is the true definition of these roles? Can we still nurture and give life, even if we aren’t parents in the traditional sense?

Embracing parenthood as our children grow.


 

Do we need to put our own personal growth on hold while we’re nurturing our children?

It’s no secret parenting is an emotional and in-depth experience. It’s a rollercoaster—a series of ups and downs. Often parents look back on the first years of their child’s life as a blur. We wonder if we did everything wrong. We may even feel like our own needs were put on hold or overlooked during those first years raising kids.

To understand why this is, we must explore the roles of mother and father.

When we hear words like “mother” and “feminine,” we think of emotional, nurturing qualities, especially as they pertain to our roles as parents. Motherhood is the very being of the parental role. “Father” and “masculine” might bring up opposite images—someone who DOES, rather than is. Father goes out, he obtains things to fulfill the needs of his family. He provides.

Now obviously in today’s world these normative gender roles no longer apply as rigidly as they once did, but there’s still a masculine and feminine component. Fathers today can be very nurturing, emotional and caring. Mother might be a high-powered executive and the sole breadwinner for the family, but at the core, parenting requires both the “being” AND the “doing” sides of the coin.

Male and female personality types aren’t cut and dry along gender lines either. Co-parenting and raising children as a family unit, rather than just “being” in the mother role is becoming the norm as we move into a more evolved and modern viewpoint.

Still, there are certain qualities that are assigned to parenting by the very nature of the role—nurturing, growing, connecting and evolving right alongside our children (or our projects, whatever “creation” we give birth to), whether we fall into the traditional roles of father and mother or something else.


Being a parent to the fullest extent is about BEING. It is through being that we can use parenting as a platform for our own personal growth as well as the growth of our children. We cannot simply “do” parenting; we have to BE a parent.


Emotion and the “Doing” of Parenting

Every parent knows there’s a lot of “doing” as a parent, particularly at first—there’s tossing dirty diapers in the trash, warming up bottles, feeding, sleeping, washing, and so much more. While these things involve some nurture and care, they’re definitely process-involved.

Sometimes within the processes of doing parenting, we can forget we also need to embrace the being. The “being” is vital to our own social emotional growth.

As parents, and particularly as mothers, we might forgo our own desires and yearnings to meet the desires of our children. Years pass, and when our kids are grown or have moved beyond the stage where they need constant attention, we might find ourselves less fulfilled, even empty. We might wonder why we spent so much time ignoring our own needs while we focused on the needs of those around us.

During my graduate study work (and in my own journey as a parent), I closely explored this role of motherhood and the dichotomy of being constantly “needs focused” and yet forgoing one’s own needs.

On the purely practical level, there are the basic functions of the job of mothering—feeding, dressing, changing diapers, maintaining nap and sleeping schedules, etc.—that require a significant amount of time for the woman engaged in mothering, especially in the early years. One might assume a woman’s facility with her emotions is not significant in these day-to-day happenings, but that would be a limiting assumption. –Excerpt from my dissertation, Expanding Mothering: Raising a Woman’s Awareness of the Opportunities for Personal and Psychosocial Growth and Development in Mothering (pg. 21)

At the core of motherhood and through these practical actions, there’s a great deal of emotion, but these emotions are often undervalued by society, and even by the parents who are experiencing them.

Even from the first moments of being a parent,

she is confronted by her fear and scarcity/survival about being strong enough, or capable enough to birth and feed her baby. She will need to be in a relationship with herself, allowing past fears and beliefs that she is “not enough” to come to the surface for healing, acknowledge that she actually is capable and move to trust—in both herself and those supporting her. Not only will she achieve the desired outcome more effectively she will have experienced it as a fulfilling here and now moment. –Excerpt from my dissertation, Expanding Mothering: Raising a Woman’s Awareness of the Opportunities for Personal and Psychosocial Growth and Development in Mothering (pg. 18)

Experiencing Growth Together

Parenting can be both frightening and fulfilling. It can dredge up much of our past and our beliefs about ourselves—the doubts, the feelings of, “I have no idea what I’m doing,” and the fears can become almost palpable as we try to raise our children.

At the core of becoming a fulfilled parent is embracing our own personal growth alongside the growth of our children. The amazing thing about children is that they can become our model for how we can go forth and view the world. Children are always open to new experiences. They approach each day as a new adventure. They experience wonder and awe every day.

How wonderful for each of us, if we could learn to apply the same approach! By working through our fears and limiting beliefs, we not only discover and engage, but also thrive and evolve, not only as parents but also as individuals.

Parenting Workshops

The Wright Foundation offers several parenting workshops, including our popular weekend family adventure retreats where parents can spend time with their children and apply the skills they’re learning to their parenting.

By expanding our own social and emotional intelligence and doing our personal growth work, we parents can look back on the years of raising our children as years of fulfillment and joy. We can fully engage and live with intentionality and purpose. Rather than simply “doing what it takes” to parent, we can BE what it takes to parent.

At the very core of parenting is a need to embrace, rather than shirk your emotional side. You must feel your emotions fully and understand your yearnings and innermost desires. Fulfillment isn’t something parents must forgo, it can be found within the act of parenting itself.

For more information on our weekend workshops or opportunities for personal growth at Wright, please visit the Wright Foundation website.


About the Author

Gertrude Lyons

Gertrude Lyons is a human emergence coach and adjunct faculty member at Wright Graduate University. Her academic career spans from a bachelor’s degree in Finance and Accounting, a master’s in psychology from Antioch University, and a newly completed doctoral degree from WGU. Gertrude is a wife and mother of two and resides in Chicago, IL where she continues to learn, grow, and develop her skills as a human emergence coach with the Wright team.


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Wright Living is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.

Portions of this post are taken from Gertrude’s doctoral dissertation, Expanding Mothering: Raising a Woman’s Awareness of the Opportunities for Personal and Psychosocial Growth and Development in Mothering—A Curriculum Evaluation Study.

In Honor of the Feminine: International Women’s Day

Today I salute all women and the feminine values that matter more than ever in our world.

international women's day


One of the biggest challenges in honoring the feminine is that it sometimes speaks in a whisper, not a roar – like listening to the silence at a loud sporting event immediately after the score. As I woke up this morning and thought about all of the women everywhere who give, serve, care, share, and connect in all the ways they instinctively do that often go unnoticed or unvalued, I dedicated my day and my moments to them and to the feminine. Below is a tribute from me to all of the women warriors in our world I so admire.

IN HONOR OF THE FEMININE…

by Dr. Judith Wright

I made my bed today in honor of the feminine – for all of the women who tend, care, and work to improve their worlds.

I did my makeup today in honor of the feminine – for all of the women who bring their beauty to the world.

I said my prayers today in honor of the feminine –for all of the women who honor and worship the Creator in all his or her faces and forms, knowing that creating life is the greatest gift.

I did my walk today in honor of the feminine–for all of the women who love and nurture Mother Earth, and to Mother Earth who nourishes us all.

I ate my breakfast today in honor of the feminine–with gratitude to those who cultivate the food and help us partake of the gifts of Mother Earth and to all of those who activate the alchemy of food through their cooking to create nourishing meals that sustain and nurture those they love.

I listened to a friend in pain today in honor of the feminine, for those who listen with an open heart and deep caring.

I felt my stress today in honor of the feminine, for all of those who care about everything, big and small, and want the best for everyone, and to do their best for everyone.

I cried today in honor of the feminine–for all those who love, care, and tend to others, whose gifts are not honored, or worse, are ridiculed, demeaned, belittled, ignored, threatened, or punished.

I wept today for all of the girls and women who do not know their special gifts or how important their gifts are, who do not know how precious they are, how powerful they are, what a gift they are.

I sobbed today for humanity in honor of the feminine, for a world that needs the gifts of all of its inhabitants to be whole, complete, healed, at peace, and to flourish, to become what humanity can become.

I wrote today to honor the feminine in all its faces and forms, because it would be easier not to. It would be easier to think it’s too small, doesn’t matter, doesn’t make a difference.

I wrote today, because the feminine is powerful beyond measure. Because our caring, concern, tending, listening, feeling, caring, connecting, holding, touching, risking, falling down, getting up, and moving forward matter in ways we may never know in our lifetimes.

I honor the feminine.


About the Author

Judith

Dr. Judith Wright is a media favorite, sought-after inspirational speaker, respected leader, peerless educator, bestselling author, & world-class coach. She is a co-founder of Wright and the Wright Graduate University.


Loving the content and want more? Follow Judith on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest!

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Wright Living is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.

How To Face Your Fears,
Get Out There & Live
an Amazing Life!

 

If you want to change, if you want to be more fulfilled, if you want to be stronger—you have to learn how to face your fears.

Life is short. Learn how to face your fears and live an amazing life.

Now I’m not talking about bungee jumping or smashing a spider or “facing your fears” in a conventional way.

We all have traditional fears like arachnophobia or agoraphobia, and those are things to overcome, and yes, they can hold us back, of course…but those aren’t the fears that keep us from becoming fulfilled in a larger sense.

The fears that keep us from becoming fulfilled are based on the things we don’t say because we hold back. They’re the things that terrify us about ourselves. The feeling that we shouldn’t change. That we aren’t worth changing. That we’re too much, not enough, disappointing, or not worth putting forth the effort for. The feeling that we’re supposed to always be “the strong one,” no matter how we really feel.


New York Times best-selling author Marianne Williamson wrote,

It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us.

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.

 


YOU are powerful. Each of us has, within our very being, the ability to become our greatest self. We can face our fears; we can overcome them and realize our full potential.

The Shadow Inside Each of Us

Carl Jung discussed our shadow self in his archetype model. Inside each of us, we have certain archetypes (or selves) that make up who we are. Jung describes two of these as our persona and our shadow self.

Our persona is the face we put on for the world around us. In fact, the Latin origin of persona literally means, “mask.” We put on this mask and walk around presenting the side of ourselves we want others to see. This is who we think we should be. It’s how we want people to see us.

Each of us has this other side, however—our shadow self. It sounds menacing and scary, and to be honest, it can be. Our shadow self is our denied self. It’s the desires, our fears, and our embarrassment that lies within us. It’s the thing that both holds us back and represents the feelings we have that “aren’t okay.”

Maybe you were raised in a family where it wasn’t okay to be angry.

All of us feel anger, of course, and logically and consciously you probably know that. Whenever YOU feel angry, however, you might have this nagging sensation that it’s “wrong.” You may think it’s not how you should feel or that your anger isn’t okay.

So what do you do? You smash down that anger. You put it away. You feel guilty for feeling it. You might even think you’re a bad person.

Eventually, it builds and builds inside you. One day, you explode over something when it might not be warranted and you’re filled with shame. You feel like you shouldn’t have gotten angry. You’ve reinforced the belief that not only that what you did was bad, but that YOU are bad. You have this monster inside you.

First of all, we have to embrace our shadow self. To feel alive, we have to reanimate this area of ourselves that we’ve cut off and not allowed. What happens to tissue when it’s cut off from blood flow? It necrotizes. It dies. It infects the rest of the tissue around it and kills it.

Instead of allowing these negative and false beliefs to dictate how we feel, we instead need to let go of our family myths and our limiting beliefs. We need to open it up, examine it and heal, rather than cut it off.

Letting Go of Limiting Beliefs

Now, of course, it’s not that easy. You can’t just go, “This makes me feel bad, and so I’m going to let it go.” If it were that simple, we’d all be living our best lives right now…without any work.

Instead, we have to really listen to what’s going on inside of us. We have to understand the ideology of our own hurts. We have to open the doors, even if we’re afraid of the floodgates and what might happen when they open up.

Do you know what will happen? Change.

It might feel scary and it might feel uncertain, but what is life if you aren’t embracing it for all you can? What is life if you aren’t pushing yourself?


If the things that come out of your mouth and out of your head aren’t terrifying you, then you aren’t really pushing yourself. You aren’t opening yourself up.


We’re all carrying around these pieces of ourselves from our childhood. Many of them were formed before we even realized it or could do anything about it. These pieces we carry around might be painful. They might be pressures put on us by our parents—maybe you had a mother who emotionally “bled” all over you to show how much you hurt her when you disappointed her, so consequently you walk around in fear of disappointing all the other “mothers” in your life.

Maybe you had to absorb your father’s anxiety and anger. Battleships have zinc cores because they have an electrical current that runs through the center. If left, the current would eat right through the ship, so the zinc is there to absorb all of the electricity. Often, particularly with women, they end up having to “be” the “zinc” to absorb the anxiety and stress around them. (Think of the Office Manager, Human Relations Director, or the Engagement Coordinator.)

We all have a dark side, a shadow side. We all have pieces of our youthful selves running around in our head, believing those very things we were told as children, such as: You’re too much. You need to help calm things down. You disappoint others. You need to protect everyone around you. It’s not okay to be angry.

By not facing and dealing with this unfinished business, we can’t put our best selves out there.

Experience the pain. It’s okay to feel pain and use it as a gift. If you deny pain, you’re denying your gift to the world around you. We have to start exercising that best self, grow ourselves up, and start to embrace change no matter how frightening.

We’re all interested in stasis. Stasis is safe. It’s familiar. It’s easy.

But when you want to be truly great, when you want to level up and fight, stasis isn’t productive. In fact, stasis is damaging. Even if it’s painful to push ourselves, it’s through that pushing that we grow. We have to stretch our muscles, stretch our brains, and stretch our emotions to push through and become the best we can be.

So often, when people are on the verge of real success, be it in business or in life, they reach a point where they get scared and they start holding back. Rather than grow their business in the next step, take their marriage to the next level, or push themselves further, they hold on to the status quo, thinking they’re happy enough. They’re afraid to rock the boat.

You know what? Screw being happy! Aim to be fulfilled, not just “happy.” Aim to make your last breath your best breath, not just to hold where you are.

I’m reminded of a clip from the movie Any Given Sunday with Al Pacino:

I don’t know what to say, really. Three minutes till the biggest battle of our professional lives all comes down to today. Now either we heal as a team or we’re gonna crumble, inch by inch, play by play, ’til we’re finished.

We’re in hell right now, gentlemen, believe me. And, we can stay here — get the s*** kicked out of us — or we can fight our way back into the light. We can climb outta hell one inch at a time.

Now, I can’t do it for you. I’m too old. I look around. I see these young faces, and I think — I mean — I made every wrong choice a middle-aged man can make. I, uh, I pissed away all my money, believe it or not. I chased off anyone who’s ever loved me. And lately, I can’t even stand the face I see in the mirror.

You know, when you get old in life things get taken from you. I mean that’s…part of life. But, you only learn that when you start losing stuff. You find out life’s this game of inches. So is football. Because in either game, life or football, the margin for error is so small — I mean one-half a step too late, or too early, and you don’t quite make it. One-half second too slow, too fast, you don’t quite catch it.

The inches we need are everywhere around us.

They’re in every break of the game, every minute, every second.

On this team, we fight for that inch. On this team, we tear ourselves and everyone else around us to pieces for that inch. We claw with our fingernails for that inch, because we know when we add up all those inches that’s gonna make the difference between winning and losing! Between livin’ and dyin’!

I’ll tell you this: In any fight, it’s the guy who’s willing to die who’s gonna win that inch. And I know if I’m gonna have any life anymore, it’s because I’m still willin’ to fight and die for that inch. Because that’s what livin’ is! The six inches in front of your face! 

Now I can’t make you do it. You got to look at the guy next to you. Look into his eyes! Now I think you’re gonna see a guy who will go that inch with you. You’re gonna see a guy who will sacrifice himself for this team because he knows, when it comes down to it, you’re gonna do the same for him!

That’s a team, gentleman!

And, either we heal, now, as a team, or we will die as individuals.

That’s football guys.

That’s all it is. Now, what are you gonna do?

So that’s the question—do you heal NOW? Do you let yourself move forward? Do you let go of the things holding you back and kick yourself in the butt and start making each moment your best moment?

If you’re ready to start living your best life, reach out and contact us at The Wright Foundation. Learn how you can make each day your best. Go forth and ignite your world.


About the Author

Dr. Bob Wright

Dr. Bob Wright is an internationally recognized visionary, educator, program developer, leadership and sales executive, best-selling author and speaker. He is a co-founder of Wright and the Wright Graduate University.


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Wright Living is a division of the Wright Foundation for the Realization of Human Potential, a leadership institute located in Chicago, Illinois. Wright Living performative learning programs are integrated into the curriculum at Wright Graduate University.