When People Lie About You and Other Wrongs Leaders Experience
Feeling wronged begins when you’re in diapers.
Remember that look of betrayal your son or daughter gave you when they got their first shot in the doctor’s office. Things go downhill from there.
It’s easy to feel wronged when you’re a leader because the actions of others reflect on your performance. We say, “I’m disappointed,” but sometimes we mean, “You wronged me.”
You feel wronged when people:
- Lie about your motives. Some people assume you’re acting selfishly when you’re trying to help.
- Carelessly drop the ball. Some people don’t realize their poor performance reflects on them AND you.
- Backstab you for personal advantage.
- Judge you based on partial information. Keeping confidences means you make decisions others may not understand.
Responding to feeling wronged:
At first blush, disappointment turns to pain and self-justification. The people who wrong you deserve to be attacked.
A person who feels wronged justifies doing wrong.
First responses to feeling wronged are self-sabotage.
- Pulling back.
- Paying back.
- Manipulating and deceiving.
Time doesn’t heal all wounds. Some people die with old wounds gnawing at their hearts. Resentment makes wounds hurt more.
A person who handles wrongs wrongly hangs on to offenses in order to justify wrong behavior.
How to deal with being wronged:
- Never justify doing wrong with someone else’s offenses. Do the right thing because it’s who you are.
- Notice your language. Repeatedly talking about the offenses of others is self-justification in disguise.
- Unrequested forgiveness cleanses your soul. (Forgiveness is never deserved. Forgiveness is an event and a process. You may need to forgive many times.)
- What part might you have played in the wrong?
- Hold people accountable for their good, not your revenge.
What wrongs do leaders experience?
How might leaders deal with being wronged?
When You’ve Been Wronged (webmd.com)
Stay Right When You’re Wronged | Psychology Today
Wow. No responses, yet!
This makes me wonder what we’d learn from knowing which of your blog post topics get no responses.
I’ve often said #1. I ask… “What do you want to be remembered for?”
My reasoning is this… humans don’t have perfect memories. If they only remember part of the story, make sure your parts are as respectful and forward-thinking action-based on improving the situation. (Which is my re-wording of #4… I say “What part can you play in making this right?”)
Thanks Macisaac. Your re-wording of #4 is powerful.
I’m never sure why some posts get lots of comments and others don’t get any. 🙂
This post gets me thinking about people from my past. There are just a few, who my thoughts are around the negatives and I have difficulty remembering the positives of the relationship.
The negativity can bring me down a notch when I think about them.
Maybe if I can focus on the positives from those few people, I can change a part of my personal trajectory?
What wrongs do leaders experience? The typical fact is people don’t see the entire picture, purely judged on what people see and only half of what they know. Often times we are to quick to bring criticism with only a minimal amounts of information, people need to step back and think before they wrong others. granted the intent may not be wrongful, yet the perception of the Leaders can be viewed differently. “People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones”.
How might leaders deal with being wronged? By doing the right thing as 2 wrongs don’t make a right. As you mentioned ” Doing the right thing because its who you are”.
Folks lying about you or putting spin on your motives is the darkest side of leadership pain. Good leaders care about their people having someone you care about lie is deeply hurtful. I often default to a trusted friend, and this is an area where an advisor can be helpful. An accountability voice outside our own who we can consult on how we communicated, did we create an ambiguity that allowed this lie to gain traction?
Measure against truth, not against others opinions/misunderstandings/lies or the pain they might bring. My daughters — even in their 30’s – 40’s now repeat the family credo (sometimes with affection, sometimes frustration) “we tell the truth.” If there’s an opportunity to dialogue with your offender, truth is your most powerful too, usually applying it gently is most effective — that can be difficult, if we’re leaders we usually have egos and forgiveness (for the short-sighted) can feel like a loss.
Dan, Thanks for the post. Your point on “Unrequested forgiving” was very good.
Is this why people say Forgiving is selfish and its perfectly ok to be selfish.
Nagarajan. I’m not sure why people say forgiving is selfish. But, there is personal advantage when we do. If dropping the rocks in our pockets is selfish then I’d say being selfish is OK.
There you go: https://leadershipfreak.blog/2020/05/12/rocks-in-your-pockets-drop-the-weight-that-holds-you-back/