Tuesday, November 11, 2008

I'm such a horrible person sometimes

I don't like conflicts. And I want everyone to like me.

Sort of. Most of the time.

However, I don't forget things easily and I've learnt to be more careful when it comes to giving people second chances.

If you're nice to me, I'm nice to you. And I'm loyal. If you're mean to me, I cut you off. And I don't forgive easily.

I'm such a horrible person sometimes.

A couple of weeks ago I got into an awkward situation at work. A colleague of mine had done something I reacted to. Something that made my work much more difficult. And something that isn't in our company's policy or routines. This colleague has responsibilities that are sort of new to him/her. I talked to another colleague about what had happened (not in a gossip-kind-of-way but in a I-have-to-inform-you-as-you're-affected-as-well-kind-of-way) and we both thought it'd be a good idea if I called this other colleague and talked to him/her about the possible consequences of his/her action and how it affected others in our organisation. If we were unlucky an action such as his/hers could result in others having to "clean up the mess" and for the company to pay large amounts for damages.

The call turned out to be a bad idea. My call wasn't well received at all. I was told to mind my own business. To let my boss be the one to tell him/her how the work should be done. To find my place in the organisation. (Which is totally absurd as our company isn't hierarchical in that sense). I was told I was rude. That I was stepping out of line. And that he/she would report "my behaviour" not only to my boss but also to our company's executive manager.

This was on a Friday afternoon.

Monday morning I reported to my boss. I told him about the situation that led up to the call and I gave him copies of the emails that were the issue to begin with. I told him about the call in itself and that I could've come out sounding rude as I actually did laugh at one point during the call, but that my laugh was a sign of nervousness as I wasn't prepared for the kind of reaction I got from the colleague.

My boss assured me that I had every right to contact the colleague to inform him/her about the routines of our company. And that he didn't see any reason to not back me up if he was called to a meeting about this. He told me about the pressure this colleague is under at the moment and that he thought the colleague would've come to his/hers senses during the weekend and realised that he/she overreacted. My boss thought I'd get an apology.

This happened about three weeks ago. I haven't heard anything.

I don't think about it all too much. Not anymore. But everytime I do, I get frustrated. I get angry at him/her. I can feel how I tense up.

Yesterday I used this reaction to get through a spinning class at the gym. I was about to completely give up and sit down on my bike during the last song instead of trying to stand up as the instructor wanted us to. She tried to energize us and told us (yelled at us!) to find inspiration within to be able to get through the class in a standing position. And the picture that came to my mind was this specific colleague and a torture machine that reacted to my pedalling...

The more I pedalled, the more pain he/she was in.

I'm such a horrible person sometimes.

But I managed to get through my spinning class in a standing position.


swedish fishie said...

Ugh! Work place conflicts! I had one awhile back because for once in my 3 years I told my coworker I didn't have time to do her work...we both still don't talk to each other. They (the conflicts) can unfortunately make things very uncomfortable in your workplace but at least your boss has your back in all this!!

Kim said...

What a great way to turn that frustration and disappointment in to something constructive.

There is still time - maybe they will come to their senses.

Geek Knitter said...

I don't think you're a horrible person. Now, if you actually built the torture machine, you might be a horrible person. Fantasies are not realities, they're just fantasies. Workplace conflicts are hard, as you well know. Try not to beat yourself up too much. You may never get the apology, but you know you did the right thing.


Alissa said...

Yuck! Work conflict is always the worst... if you ask me, your boss should have requested that this person apologize to you! But at least you're getting a great work out due to it all! Ha!

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, we can't control the reactions of others; fortunately, we can control our own reactions. -Shell

Archiknist said...

I did a similar thing in kickboxing class... the instructor would tell us to imagine the sound of our fist hitting flesh when we hit the punching bag (which I couldn't really do, since I haven't ever punched anyone), and I'd always see the same person's face. I didn't imagine I was punching him, exactly, but that he'd understand from my workout how mad I was at him. He never did understand, but my arms looked really great!

crrly said...

Jag bara gapar. Vilken otrevlig människa. Usch, jag förstår din reaktion, det är superobehagligt. Ska du fråga chefen vad som händer eller bara försöka glömma? Har du nåt med den här personen att göra?

Gött att det kunde komma nåt bra ur din frustration!! :-)