How can you see the silver lining when overlooked for promotion in the workplace?
Is this a signal to look for other opportunities?
In this present economic climate jobs are not always easy to find when you need them.
There are some days, like today, when an old experience throws itself up into the conscious mind and I find myself ‘mulling over’ past events trying to make sense.
Last year, the unwelcome realisation of being ‘too old’ for my career and what I have done best for several decades, hit me like a ten tonne steam roller, right between the eyes, with a thud that left me stunned, shaken and in unspeakable shock.
So much so that I didn’t talk about it with my husband or family for two months.
I was in ‘limbo land’. Simply, going through the motions at work and at home as if nothing had happened and life was normal- but it wasn't!
Disconnected from the real world, my thoughts were trapped inside my head and every day was a constant struggle between two minds. One mind of bitterness and loss was growing big and fat while the other of positivity and purposeful life was barely surviving.
I am very good at my job, I go the extra mile, I am friendly and helpful to new colleagues and stepped in for my manager to make sure deadlines for the team were met.
I thought I had covered all the requirements for the new administration position.
In hindsight, I should have known that physiologically I was tied to my birthdate no matter how youthful I appeared on the outside or how much energy I had to offer to outlast the younger candidates.
Automatically, the date of my birth had moved me into another category and I missed out on this position! To say I was too old would be a constitutional violation of my rights for an equal opportunity interview, but it was clear that my age had invoked an expiry date to my usefulness.
Not only had I been overlooked for the position but I had been reassigned to another department under ‘restructuring’ of the organisation.
My heart was heavy and I felt devalued and worthless.
Bitterness is an awful feeling that brings about sickness both physically and mentally. I had endured it for too long.
Luckily, I woke up after two months of harbouring a secret from my family, and broke the news. Sharing my rejection with the family was the saving grace for my next decision.
There were two choices I could take:
- accept the rejection and look for another job in the sector.
- Or... I could forgive myself for my egotistical feelings and accept the situation as out of my control and look for satisfaction inside the new position.
I chose to accept the latter option.
One morning, a few weeks later, a colleague asked me how I felt about the change and I heard myself say,
‘Perhaps the good works that I was meant to do in the previous position are done and now there is room for me to do good works in this new position- so that is how I am going to look at it!’
Her response was ‘Good for you!’
Immediately I felt release from the whole situation- no emotive feelings!
I had made the choice to move on and change my outlook and attitude to a situation.
Every day there is a choice- to be positive about the day or to look for the negatives. Two months of negatives and secrets was two months too long for me and I don't want to go back there again.
A friend recommended ‘The Law of Attraction' by Esther and Jerry Hicks
and ‘The Secret' by Rhonda Byrne to help give a framework to work through the real and perceived experiences of regaining control of my life. Inside there are stories of real people who have used the power of positive thought to strengthen and focus their minds to attract opportunities for improvement and successful living into their lives.
I am already in my new role, without responsibility, and thoroughly loving the prospects ahead.
Putting on an attitude of gratitude has helped me to see the other side of life and I am very grateful for the opportunity that came my way when one door closed.
What is your story of how have you handled rejection in the workplace?
What are you grateful for today?