In life, we are defined by our actions. Words have little value without the action to back them. I was reminded of that today. After one of my clients living with diabetes informed me that he was being harassed at work and reported it to the human resource department.
Some people spend hours worrying about the outcome of their actions so much that they don’t act in their best interest. That is unfortunate.
Remember: not acting is an action in and of itself. Think about what, not taking action will cause when you’re trying to resolve your problems.
People will tell you that there are things that you can’t do or shouldn’t do because of their fear of the unknown or their best interests. It is not the outcome of your action that is important, but that you act on what you know and feel to be correct with the information you have at the moment.
Before acting on what you believe is right, take other points of views into account and weigh the pros and cons.
Our words and our behaviors need to match! When that happens, regardless of the outcome, we are being true to ourselves and can hold our heads high.
Most times in life we don’t know what the outcome of our actions will be. I can tell you what I do know. If we sit in fear of that unknown, we will continue to keep everything where it is. Nothing will change.
“If you are in an abusive relationship, we will continue to be abused.”
Some people don’t act out of fear of being fired from a job, even though they know what is happening is wrong. So they will continue to experience abuse in their professional lives, day in and day out.
It is not so much about facing your fear—you already do that! It is recognizing that it is okay to be afraid and acknowledge what you are feeling. It is taking action despite the feelings of being afraid that helps you to overcome your fear and allows you to find happiness.
If your choices are to do nothing, spending the next few years sad or go to human resources to make a formal complaint, you need to way it out. Then here are the possible outcomes:
Nothing happens, but you feel good that you did what you could.
You get fired! You collect unemployment and now have the energy to actively look for work in a supportive, less abusive environment. You may have a new problem, but you now have more control over your life.
The offender gets fired, and the problem is gone. You still feel good that you took your life into your hands.
They stay but realize that if they continue their abusive behavior they could lose their job. They also recognize that you have someone to go to if that person acts up again. You have taken control, and you are in charge of you and how people treat you at work.
There are other outcomes too. I don’t have all of the answers (my clients and I wish, I did). What I do know is that a person who lives in fear of the unknown will not find happiness in the Here and Now.
When you stand up for your rights, you can look in the mirror and be proud of yourself. That is the person that matters the most.
The truth is we are all scared from time to time. We may not choose the situation we’re in, but we can decide how to handle it.
Eliot LeBow, LCSW, CDE, is a diabetes-focused psychotherapist. His private practice, located in New York City and is also available via Skype. LeBow, who has been living with type 1 diabetes since 1977, treats the many diverse cognitive, behavioral, and emotional needs of people living with type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
All the advice included in this blog is therapeutic in nature and should not be considered medical advice. Before making any changes to your diabetes maintenance program, please consult with your primary physician or endocrinologist.