Of the many jobs I’ve had there was never a manager or “Boss,” as he would have it, that was as terrible as the last one.  This man was a tyrant, a dictator!  And although I do not like slander, it was eventually no secret that I despised him.  So I will continue, because there IS a moral to the story.

I worked under his rule for a year and a half out of necessity; my husband was unemployed and we had a young child at home.  I worked long hours to meet his goals.  I took his criticism that I was too slow, too mean, too nice, too talkative, too unqualified and I cried a river, then a lake, and soon an ocean.  Once a week we would meet, just the two of us, behind closed doors.  Part of my position was considered Operations Manager, but with the long list of responsibilites and the Monday Meeting Slams, inspiration was an elusive fish to catch.

As time passed I understood that the owners valued the manager’s recruiting ability more than the office administrator’s sanity.  I decided to dry up the ocean and say goodbye to all the imaginary marine life for which I had made a home.  This is OVER!  I blamed the BAD MANAGER for creating a stressful environment that prevented the baby I was growing to form a normal heart.  I blamed the BAD MANAGER for making me feel horrible about the way I work, even though I knew deep down that I was a valuable asset!

I would take it no more.  After a year and a half, I started to talk back without the hope of compromise or the hint of civility.  In the right situations, I told him what he was:  A LIAR!  If he shut my door and tried to confront me, I told him to: GET OUT OF MY OFFICE!  I no longer made the effort to greet him or even look at him.  I stopped caring. 

I will save you the details of how I stopped working there, but I will tell you why I can now thank and love my ex-manager, although I will never let him know my gratitude.  If it wasn’t for him I would be looking for a job right now.  But he made realize that I never wanted to have a manager again.  If it wasn’t for him, I might not be following my dream.  I might’ve stayed in the position for a really long time if he was a great manager, knowing fully that I didn’t want to spend my life doing what I was doing.  Instead, I am finishing a Master’s degree I began 7 years ago.  I am spending more time with my son and husband.  I am reading more.  I’m going to the gym and doing yoga again!  I’ve taken out my paint and canvas (which is always a first step).  And I learned that if I ever have another manager again, it will be when I find the RIGHT JOB.

In the words of The Dalai Lama:  Just as having unexpectedly found a treasure in your own house, you should be happy and grateful towards your enemy for providing that precious opportunity.  Because if you are ever to be successful in your practice of patience and tolerance, which are critical factors in counteracting negative emotions, it is due to the combination of your own efforts and also the opportunity provided by your enemy.”  -The Art of Happiness

Well, I tried to practice patience for a year and a half and failed on that front.  So, Thanks for the opportunity to practice patience, BAD MANAGER.  But, I’d like to thank you so much more for giving me the opportunity to REALIZE the REAL treasures I was too afraid to entertain.