First off let me say how much compassion I have for all the participants of the devastating Hurricane Katrina. I don’t like the word victim because that implies a guilty party inflicting harm on another and whom can you blame in this case? Certainly not W or do the “evil republicans” have a hidden weather machine targeting minorities?
As a restaurant management recruiter in Atlanta, I have seen first hand how this disaster has left its mark on the citizens of the region. There are 2 types of candidates that I have tried to help in the last year and a half: the “Why Me” and the “Survivor”.
The “Why Me” has a negative mental attitude about everything, their lost possessions, their former job, their flooded house, their missing family and friends…every single thing that has ever touched their life. They feel as if they are the targets of misplaced punishment, rage or unjustified action against them. They feel that life is out to get them and because they made it through a horrible event everyone owes them something. The worst thing is they focus all their energy on what has happened in the past.
They waste time on something that cannot be changed and do themselves even more of a disservice. Unfortunately, this behavior leads most times to an employer giving him or her a second chance to which they oblige by revisiting old wounds and the negative mentality. Their goals are not positive in the long-term range and they wish to exploit the situation in the short term, only to get what they feel is due to them now.
Let me set this straight once and for all. The world is not currently, in the past or in the future ever going to be a fair place. Fairness is something an author came up with to pass the time and entertain children. It does not exist. If you wait for a fair world you will be dust before that dawn ever arrives. The world owes you nothing! Let it go! To be blunt get this through your thick head and lose the ego and you will be on the right path in no time.
I can tell you that by using a positive mental attitude and long-term goal setting you can do anything humanly possible. If you focus your energy on making your situation better, instead of dwelling on the negative things that have plagued you, you will be in a better place because of it. This has been proven throughout time, but as human beings we always take the hard route and have to prove things to ourselves. We do not learn from history well and many of our mistakes have been documented over the years.
We are very stubborn and egotistical creatures of habit and often those habits are bad.
Because of this, I love helping the “Survivors”. These are the few who have been to hell and back and ask what’s next? They will not falter and they can handle anything that comes at them. They will succeed no matter what! Instead of absorbing all the negative energy and letting it misdirect their goals, they reflect and reshape it into a positive mental attitude and a new vision of themselves.
They take what life has sent their way and learn from it. They expect nothing in return, know what it takes to get where they must go and prove themselves again and again. They will accept nothing less than success and know it will be theirs if they try hard enough, have persistence, resilience and a strong foundation of faith.
As much as I try to send people down the right path and redirect their energy, I am not always successful. You have to truly want to let someone help you to complete your journey. No one can force your acceptance; it has to come from within.
So the next time a tragedy befalls you, will you choose to let it alter your whole life and spoil your core or will you get back up triumphantly and bloodied after getting knocked to your knees?
From a hiring managers perspective, who would you rather hire…a “Why Me” or a “Survivor”?
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