Monday, February 12, 2018

Volunteer Victims

It’s a great temptation to volunteer as a victim. Do you know that we sign up for that job?

A man who dined regularly in his favorite restaurant complained about the bread. It wasn’t fair, he emphasized, that other restaurants served lots of bread. But here he gets only one piece.

So the next time he came in, they served him four pieces. He still complained it wasn’t enough.

On his next visit his server brought him a dozen pieces of bread. The man still complained.

For his next visit they put a large basket of bread on the table. But still he complained. “The other restaurants give all the bread you can eat.”

They decided to be ready for him the next day. They had an enormous loaf of bread prepared. It was six feet long and two feet wide. Four people carried the loaf to his table. They plopped it down in front of him. It took up half the table and hung over both sides. The chef stood back, pleased with himself, to see how the customer would react.

He looked over the loaf and commented, “So, we’re back to one piece again, are we?”

Like this man, we volunteer to be victims, but in more subtle ways. We believe life is unfair, people are untrustworthy and we are getting a bad shake. We think everyone should know just how terrible things are and we feel obliged to tell them.

One man says of a friend that he hates to ask her how she is feeling because he knows ahead of time what she will say. “You get an organ recital from her,” he says. She dwells on her health problems to the exclusion of everything good in her life.

The problem is, life sometimes is unfair and we can be victimized. But the greater truth is, people can decide whether they are victims or are victors. They can feel helpless and miserable, or they can try to feel strong. Happy people have learned that they cannot always control their circumstances, but they can often control how they will respond.

Lewis Dunning said, “What life means to us is determined not so much by what life brings to us as by the attitude we bring to life; not so much by what happens to us as by our reaction to what happens.”

You were born to be a victor! You were meant to be happy! Will you claim your birthright today?

-- Steve Goodier


Corneliatime said...

Hi Steve. This message came at a great time, I was fired from my position at a Large Bank for not meeting sales goals. The most interesting this is no one has met Corporate sales goals for the particular bank branch where I worked and the staffing turnover was horrible with me having SIX branch managers in less than two years time. Without any warning, it was decided to hire someone else and let me go as though my hard work and dedication didn't matter at all. It has taken me two whole days to realize and accept that I was thrown out with no regards to how I will maintain and support my family. But it has also dawned on me that I did not belong there in the 1st place, and I was settling in a dead zone where I could not thrive no matter how hard I tried. When I think about how cold-hearted the Regional Manager told me a decision was made to terminate my position based on sales performance, I'm thinking now it was God who decided it was time for me to fly higher, and released the chain from my ankle. It still hurts but I will focus on something better for me and my family. Thank you for this message, as I will not allow myself to come across as a victim in this situation.



Steve Goodier said...

Cornelia, as you look back in a couple years' time, I would be interested to know how this all worked out for you. Making the hard decision NOT to be a victim can pay off in huge dividends.