I got an unsolicited and unwanted e-mail from a former boss this week.
A boss who would consistently call me out for following the same practices she’d compliment many of my colleagues for.
A boss who would barely allow me to talk, and would discount all of my thoughts, ideas and suggestions.
A boss who would randomly lash out on employees she did not like.
A boss who posted my position without ever letting me know there was a problem–and then lied about it when I confronted her.
A boss who I suspect got a secret thrill from leaving people completely disoriented and disempowered.
A boss who was amazing when she was in a good mood but an absolute monster once the flip switched.
She got along well with people who would blame themselves for her erratic behavior.
She has always reminded me of what writer Julia Cameron called a crazymaker in her book, the Artist’s Way.
“Crazymakers are those personalities that create storm centers. They are often charismatic, frequently charming, highly inventive, and powerfully persuasive. And, for the creative person in their vicinity, they are enormously destructive. You know the type: charismatic but out of control, long on problems and short on solutions. Crazymakers are the kind of people who can take over your whole life. To fixer-uppers, they are irresistible: so much to change, so many distractions….”
Cameron then goes on to list techniques crazymakers use to get by in there lives… break deals, destroy schedules, expect special treatment, discount your reality, triangulate those they deal with, act as expert blamers, hate schedules (except their own), hate order, and, of course, deny that they are crazymakers.
She also pointed out that blocked creatives are attracted to crazymakers.“Very often, we fear that if we let ourselves be creative, we will become crazymakers ourselves and abuse those around us. Using this fear as an excuse we continue to allow others to abuse us,” she explains.
Losing my job and getting caught up in a smokescreen of lies was devastating at the time, but ultimately a huge relief. Although I don’t want to be buddies with my former boss (and simply asked her to remove me from her list in response to her seemingly well-meaning message), it reminded me of how much happier I am now. I love my job. I leave you with some words by Kahlil Gibran:
“And what is it to work with love? It is to weave the cloth with threads drawn from your heart even as if your beloved were to wear that cloth. It is to build a house with affection even as if your beloved were to dwell in that house. It is to sow seeds with tenderness and reap the harvest with joy even as if your beloved were to eat the fruit. It is to charge all things you fashion with the breath of your own spirit…”
Today, I send you the best wishes for finding this kind of magic, if you don’t already have it.
And with love.