109: How to Be Spiritual in the Corporate World (Sort Of)

We explore taking spiritual principles into the work world. This part 2 episode, follows episode 103: Working in Recovery to talk about how we can apply the spiritual principles, values and morals that we find are right for us, in the workplace setting. Do we have to do nonprofit work to be spiritually fit, or is there a way to take principles into any job? Is it okay to aspire to make money? What “good” can I do at the job I am at? Do I ever ask myself how love and being of service fit into my job description or daily duties? What are my motives for doing a good job at work? Would the customer or my employer want to hire more people like me? Can I trust that showing up and being of service will have outcomes I am happy with? We explore all these questions and more as we talk about using spiritual principles in our profession. Join the conversation by leaving a message, emailing us at RecoverySortOf@gmail.com,  or find us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, or find us on our website at www.recoverysortof.com.

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Transcript:

recovery sort of is a podcast where we discuss recovery topics from the perspective of people living in long-term recovery this podcast does not intend to represent the views of any particular group organization or fellowship the attitudes expressed are solely the opinion of its contributors be advised there may be strong language or topics of an adult nature

welcome back it’s recovery sort of i’m jason a guy who has a job and i’m billy i’m a person in long-term recovery and i’m caroline i’m also a person in long-term recovery and also super quiet i gotta get you to yell in here so we’re gonna continue our conversation about work and last time it was a lot about the obstacles that we run into as being people in recovery things that might be in our work history or not in our work history uh different complications that arise and now we’re going to transition into like you know the idea that we carry these spiritual principles that we learn in recovery and in our meeting and fellowship environment into all of our affairs right we take these out into the world we take them into our family life we take them into our work life and today specifically we’re going to talk about what does that look like in our work lives and our professions right we we’ve probably all met the person who talks about the things they do at work at you know before or after the meeting or during the meeting and you’re like holy [ __ ] that doesn’t sound spiritual at all right you’re taking materials from your job and that’s stealing right we’ve all kind of been put on to that idea i think when i got here well let’s get real right when i got here i had never really held a job for real and so i didn’t know what the hell to do with any of that but i heard stories about people and they were like well you just take materials home if you’re a roofer and you need stuff done on your roof you just take roofing materials home and it was like okay cool like that’s how you do it and then i heard other people say yeah that’s stealing like that’s not how we live life unless you ask the boss for it or the owner like that’s just stealing um i’m sure there’s some other you know good anecdotal stories we have about different people and how they they do maybe some weird things in our work environment for me like thinking about people like who have a reputation in a field like car dealers who have a reputation of being shady i’m like how can you be a car dealer in recovery but i’ve known a couple right so i think it’s just exploring how in the world we can use these principles to our advantage maybe in professions where these principles seem like hindrances maybe just in any of our jobs so who’s up who wants to say something about that well i i can say i take materials home from my job of the type of like pens and paper but i also work remotely so

i think that’s encouraged um yeah you know i think i think you brought up a really good point jason the careers where almost the very act of being in that field is in direct contrast seemingly to the spiritual principles that we that we uh that we are encouraged and and and learn to apply in recovery car dealer is a good one another one i was thinking of was you know those people that like that whole subfield within the recovery field of people who are like actively recruiting people to go to their recovery program um or or like selling families on the program um there’s some really cruddy stuff happening in that world um and maybe not all of those people certainly not all of those people are in recovery but certainly some of them are and and it really makes me question but i think i think humans also have a pretty strong ability to to justify their behaviors right so um that’s probably something that’s really really key in this is is making sure that you you have self-awareness and that you’re not kind of justifying behaviors that that really go in opposition to your spiritual principle because it earns you money yeah yeah we had that guy on uh basil came on and talked about you know the right quote-unquote right way to run recovery programs when you’re a member of recovery and trying to be honest and i feel like i’ve heard stories and of course this is you know heard through heard through heard through people and but of people who are car dealers who were good car dealers because of the fact that they were just straight up and honest like look this car is not the right car for you i’m not trying to make two billion dollars today it’s it’s more about like let’s just put you in the right car for for your situation um and i was gonna i have a good friend that’s a car dealer and we’ve had that conversation and he said exactly that he said i as a car dealer and more successful when people are happy and they come back to me or refer people to me like that’s why being honest and getting someone the right fit works better he’s like it’s not you know in the long term it’s better for me to be honest than it is to just try to make a quick book but anyway it just it reminds me when you were talking about getting people in recovery programs this situation there was a company and apparently there was a big fraud lawsuit thing that affected a member of the recovery community around baltimore i don’t know the specific names of the company or anything but they they had some deal where they were like buying light bulbs and oh yeah getting uh churches and [ _ ] and old people to buy these it was yeah that was yeah it’s a big so i have a previous sponsor that did that for a lot of years and made a lot of money and he got out of it for the ethical point he said man after years of doing that he’s like i was making tons of money and i just couldn’t couldn’t do it anymore and got out of it yeah i know a lot of people who were caught up in that yeah well the i mean so the thing that was going on while it was going on the talk was like hey people who are being recruited to do this who just stepped in the door of 12-step programs right they’re new to recovery they’re just trying to find a job this gets offered to them they get into it all of them kind of had that feeling like this just doesn’t feel right and that’s what happened with my previous sponsor he did someone offered him the job and he took it and he was good at it well but you have the people who have more time than you in recovery telling you you know they’re your bosses and they’re like oh no this happens all over the place this is normal this is just what we do and then like feeling especially if these people we talked about in the first work episode if they have criminal backgrounds if they struggle to get jobs and you have one play straight in front of you like it makes it hard to leave or to get out of even if you don’t feel like it’s the right thing to do and so i could see how people could get caught up in that but yeah that’s i don’t know i guess one of those things some things don’t sit right with my whatever you want to call it spirit soul uh itself and i just don’t feel like i could ever do that not to mention i hate making phone calls anyway but yeah it just feels so so off like how why would you want to rape somebody of their mind take advantage of people i just it’s very weird yeah so you know talking about situations where it does feel a little in opposition to our to our principles i certainly encounter this at times at my work where you know i work for corporation and i’m in uh management there are times where i will find out or know things um that that my employees that work under me are are not supposed to know um and that always feels very awkward to me um because i tend to be fully transparent um but in these very specific circumstances where it’s like you know i i know this but i’m not allowed to tell the person this i have to kind of talk about something else like that’s always a bit of a struggle for me and i will tell you that i i generally i mean i do i follow my company’s protocols that you know there’s certain information that is not intended to be you know disseminated down lower in the organization um and i try to do that still within the the the framework of my principles so you know i’m not kind of outright lying i just tend to avoid those subjects or or skirt around them but uh yeah that is something that that feels awkward for me and luckily that is not something that happens on a regular basis i would say i encounter that kind of situation maybe once a year if that um but yeah that is probably for me that at my work that’s that’s the only thing that kind of happens that can be in in opposition to kind of what my natural instincts are or my values um but it is something that i that i encounter yeah that’s i mean i i just that feeling in general someone telling me something and beforehand they’re like yeah look i’m gonna tell you this but don’t tell so-and-so and i’m just like well just don’t [ _ ] tell me i don’t have a hard time with it yeah i’m not so curious that i need to know that at the cost of having to [ _ ] worry about am i gonna slip am i gonna do this right like i don’t no i don’t even wanna just don’t tell me at all i’m usually good with it but i i yeah put you in a weird spot yeah i’d rather not and i’ve been in the same situation at work and i i’m gonna use the phrase justify it i don’t know that it’s justifying it but i justify you know knowing things that i’m not allowed to share with other employees or whatnot as as i work for that company i’ve agreed to do this job and perform these duties and this is a part of it and i have the choice to quit if it goes against my morals and values i can leave but i shouldn’t do a bad job at my job because i don’t agree with it morally or ethically or i just talk to my boss about it and say hey this is i don’t know that this is the right thing to do or this is why i don’t agree with that and then we figure it out right right yeah but i still think following following my duties as an employee my responsibilities as an employee for me has come first now it’s never been anything overly ethical you know it’s not like some sort of whistleblower situation where there’s terrible things happening water’s tainted right don’t tell anybody right so that might be different right right but i’m sure that that is the excuse that or the justification that people use when they actually are doing things that are questionable yeah you know they can tell themselves that same thing well this is my job this is what i’m supposed to be doing so it’s like what is the line and and i agree i think that’s the stance i take too which is why i do it because that as a person in management at my company that is an expectation that you know that i will at times know things and it’s not for our my my employees to know um and it is in most cases benign but again that line like where is where is the line well and to be honest and this isn’t a judgment or criticism of you but it even sounded very much like a a justification when you were like well i’m not outright lying and i remember having a conversation with like a sponsor years and years ago where he was like look there’s lying telling false information there’s just not telling the whole truth right like that’s part of lying and then there’s like these other forms of life so like there’s different missions yeah yeah there’s like different versions of lying so like we can say well i’m not outright like but it’s a lie either way yeah yeah i think the real the real test for me when i think about kind of the one of the worst case scenarios of that potential situation would be if i knew you know like everyone’s getting laid off in a month and i’m not allowed to tell them for a month until like the day they’re laid off and they’re not getting severance you know something like that where it’s like a really extreme impact to their lives and i know about it but they’re not they’re not supposed to know about it in advance and knowing about it in advance would allow them to prepare and find another you know like that that would be the real real test because that that would be very hard for me but again the expectation would be that you know if my company says don’t tell then i’m not supposed to tell that would really be that would be a big struggle i was thinking oh i come out golden on the side of this therapist don’t have no reason to lie we’re always doing spiritual principles and then i realize that’s not true right so a lot of insurance does not cover couples or families counseling right and so the way to get around that is to see one person and code it that way for insurance to cover it and then just see everybody while you’re doing that and that’s a lie whether you know no matter how you want to look at it but i think there’s a lot of therapists who would say well that’s a lie because our system’s [ _ ] up and we want to make sure these people get the help they need like we’re family and couples problems are real and are affecting our our you know world and they need to be addressed and so we need to have this covered by insurance so i i don’t know like i feel like that would be viewed by people in my arena as a a justifiable lie like it’s yes we know we’re lying but the point is we’re lying for a purpose because the system’s [ _ ] up right so does that change how we view like carrying out a spiritual principle like so it’s interesting i have these conversations with somebody who follows more buddhist practice versus like 12-step practice i guess and like 12-step is like oh no you just follow the spiritual principles no matter what that’s just how you do it you’re always honest period right even to the detriment of [ _ ] people and buddhist practices is like well what’s your intent well if your intent is good then it really doesn’t matter what the [ _ ] you’re doing honestly like if you lie to save someone’s life [ _ ] it you lied to save someone’s life that’s great the intent was awesome yeah ends justify the means right so that’s that’s an interesting perspective too that does i don’t feel like we have that in 12-step world like we don’t talk about oh well if your intent was good that’s fine i think that’s a problem of addicts in general we think in these absolutes and concrete ways it’s like learning about the gray areas of life and how to manage those gray areas is where we struggle the most yeah i but i do think even though like technically our program is like never lie i’ve had numerous sponsors over the years that have told me like no in that circumstance it’s okay so in in like actual practice i think that always feels great let’s fake it till you make it that’s a lie i don’t think that’s a lie i don’t see that’s funny i always look at that differently i always think a fake until you make it it’s not like lie about where you’re at it’s just act as if i’m gonna act as if i believe that things will work out even if i technically don’t yet and we’ll see what happens by just acting like they will yeah okay does that feel different or is this yeah sounds different

so interestingly i did a little bit of googling uh because that’s the most i do to prepare for this ever um and came across an article that talked about some things and the guy was talking about and who knows how old this [ _ ] was but he was talking about building like parts that went on to f-16 bomber planes and talking with a sponsor about feeling like that’s shitty right i’m like contributing to people dying probably and his sponsor was like giving him this idea back of like well what do you do while you’re creating these you know parts for the plane are you thinking about the families of the guys who are going to fly them and trying to keep them safe by your positive craftsmanship are you like creating these and like during that process saying a prayer for those pilots to stay safe and saying a prayer that they never have to be used to hurt anyone or harm anyone like and i just found that kind of fascinating this idea of like am i expressing love as i perform my job like it’s less about what i’m doing so to speak but more about the idea of like well how am i doing this am i doing this in a case of if i do a good job maybe people benefit from that you know like if i do this well is there a way i can do it that people prosper from me doing it or i can well wish the world while i do it so thoughts on that i don’t know i feel like if you’re doing something that is like morally corrupt which i wouldn’t argue that this example is there’s no amount of like positive positive thoughts or positive thinking that you can do to counteract that you know i hope the money from these jacked up priced light bulbs goes to help well i took a little different understanding of what you said which fits for my situation is that like when i do my job at work i manage a heating service company and and you know i try to think of well how would i want to be treated if i were the customer how would i how do i respect people that we’re doing business with how do i honor them as individuals like these are people that are working giving their hard-earned money to our company and you know do we just look at every opportunity as a way to take more money out of their pocket or do we try to be fair and honest and and respectful of them and in that case it makes the job way easier because when there are conflicts or differences like i don’t go into if if somebody’s mad at us or upset about something a bill or issue that they had like when they call i don’t immediately feel defensive because i know that our company tries to be fair and honest and yes we make mistakes and we’ll take ownership if we made a mistake but if you got a bill and you don’t like it you know i don’t feel like i’m not immediately like defensive and argumentative and things like that so it makes that aspect of things easier because i know our approach comes from like the right place right what about you what do you think how does that affect you i don’t know i i’d come back to so so a few years ago i remember um trying to get my husband at the time uh into treatment and i had call or detox or something and i called mercy detox and they only apparently take people that don’t have private insurance and so they put me in touch with what i found out was one of those like selling recruiter people and i ended up on the phone with this person and i mean the things that this person was saying to me were were shocking for someone in recovery like literally telling me that like if my husband attended their program he would be guaranteed success and if he didn’t then you know he was guaranteed failure and as someone in recovery i can know that that is bs but when i think about the families that don’t have my background in knowledge like to know that they’re being told this stuff felt like morally reprehensible so then if i think about that person then being like oh but i’m while i’m saying this absolute garbage to take advantage of people like in the worst times of their lives but i’m i’m putting positivity and love out there it it just doesn’t it’s just it has more to do with coming at things from a spiritual place you know right not happening with that person right not that yeah yeah and that’s so i’m thinking of kind of those worst case scenario careers where it’s like there’s just really no way to you can spin it in your head and i’m sure they do but there’s really no way to like line that up like it that just doesn’t it doesn’t work sure there i mean we all know people who have had experiences where people are living against the values and and morals that they seem to have you know and i hate to use this but it’s like having affairs and things like that like we’ve all known people that do those things and it’s like if you ask them they know it’s wrong and they know it’s not what they should be doing and when they share they don’t share about those things but then the payoff that’s what they’re doing and it’s like i think it’s easy to fall into that with work as it is in relationships you know because there is a value of work to making money being you know quote-unquote successful which in a lot of careers means making money or having the highest sales or getting the most people in the door you know whatever that means to be successful and then you’re getting that positive reinforcement from your boss or the people in your company or you’re honored with a [ _ ] award you know yeah i got the most people into treatment this month i got a bonus of five thousand dollars like you know those those reinforcements help you continue to justify and rationalize well it’s a job and they’re going to go somewhere and might as well get them here at least we have a good program or i think our program’s better whatever you know it’s tricky well and and i think i mean there’s one thing about carrying spiritual principles into our workplace and there’s a whole other idea of can is it possible to practice spiritual principles in a place that is out to take advantage of people like when your sole intent from the beginning of the company is to take advantage of people that just might not be a job where spiritual principles are ever going to apply like that’s somewhere where you hope somebody who is practicing spiritual principles just doesn’t work right i don’t know that there’s some way to like like if my whole job is based on getting people into a certain treatment center and i can’t do that just based on saying hey you know we’re a treatment center this is what’s positive about us there’s some other people out there that do some different things or some similar things you know we’re just one of those spots if that’s not enough to sell people on it and this comes back to one of our traditions right that one of the 12-step traditions is about the idea of like attraction rather than promotion and it’s not that they don’t promote that they exist the theory is they don’t promote some outlandish claims it’s just like this is what has worked for some people and it might work for you check it out and i feel like if a company could do that that’s not taking advantage of people but once you move into we only make money by people’s ignorance there’s no spirituality in that and i don’t think you can bring any to it and be successful right yeah at the core i mean i was thinking when you when you started talking about this i was thinking about the light bulb scam and uh you know can those employees could those employees bring spiritual principles to work and they certainly could in their interactions with each other you know that you know you could come in that day and say hi and you know bring your buddy a coffee and be a nice person and you know be willing to help the you know your fellow employees and and you could even be super like nice and friendly and polite and compassionate on the phone you know you have someone on the phone who’s having a bad day you can talk but at the core the core objective of your of your business is is not going to be aligned with spiritual principles so does that override everything else and and i would say it does well i know there’s a sket at least what i understand of i mean do you know how the light bulb scam works no okay so i’m a guy on the phone you’re a purchaser at a big giant warehouse say amazon warehouse this is the way i understand that it works i call you up hey jason how you doing i’m george because i’m never going to give you my real name i’m george i you know work for this company and we sell light bulbs and and other things for your industry and blah blah blah you know sales pitch and we give out you know bonuses and incentives for people you can’t say it exactly this way but there’s a there’s some wording you can use and uh why don’t you if you give me your home address i can send you some of these coupons and discounts that we have to offer and then i would send you like 50 hundred dollar gift cards to say outback steakhouse or whatever to try to bribe you to buy light bulbs from me then you’re getting a kickback to use my company to buy your light bulbs and i’ll send you light bulbs but i’m gonna send you whatever the t87 bulbs that you can buy at lowe’s for whatever a hundred dollars a case but i’m gonna charge you four hundred dollars a case for them so there’s a skirting around of like if we never talk about price and i just bribe you into buying from me then i can sell you 50 cases of light bulbs at 400 a piece and then i just go to lowe’s and pick them up for a hundred dollars a piece and ship them to you you know what i mean so it’s it’s unethical like the way i understood it works and they may be ripping off little old ladies but the way i understood it worked is the goal was to get these big corporate accounts where someone in purchasing is not in connection with the actual guy who’s making the purchase and then these bills just get sent in with a po that just gets paid and nobody’s ever questioning anything yeah so that’s the way that scam kind of works i don’t know the so the version the that was happening down in east baltimore i don’t your sponsor wasn’t probably working at that company no he’s been out of there for a long long time so the the the company that was in east baltimore i think it was worse so my husband worked there for a couple of weeks a few weeks maybe um and i have some friends that were involved in all of that and it was it was preying on smaller businesses where especially churches where you know things are a little more mismanaged they’re not people aren’t always like super aware of like what’s going on or you know their primary purpose isn’t to be a business right so they have less stringent business practices and my understanding was the salesperson would call up and act as if a sale had already been made and say can i mar okay it’s time to renew can i mark you down for another 100 boxes and that person they’re talking about probably doesn’t really know and then they send them with this massive bill yeah and it’s funny we get those calls all the time you know at our office it’s toner oh you know we’re due for toner for your copy machine you know it’s the same kind of thing like oh it’s time to update your whatever and they’re companies you’ve not worked with yeah oh yeah we know i mean i know who they all are right we know right away like we like to have fun with those people when they call oh yeah they want the model number of the copier we just start making things up and yeah different things it’s fun it’s a dick 69 version so anybody listening to recovery sort of right this moment your car’s extended warranty is probably about to expire and if you just click that donate uh tab on our website recoveryswordof.com you can gladly paypal us and we will cover you not really but it is it is odd to me that like say these would be people in recovery that would end up in those businesses um because you know my previous sponsor again he got the job from someone in recovery and i’m sure they did other shady stuff because he got out of it because it was shady and a lot of that stuff’s illegal like i’m not allowed to offer you kickbacks to buy from me like that’s bribery it’s not allowed yeah and you know then if people do question bills you’re caught in line you know trying to justify why you’re over charging for things and so are you surprised as people in recovery that do that kind of work um yeah i mean i guess i am are you yeah yeah i think it makes a lot of sense to me like and not to say that people in recovery are bad or anything along those lines but when we first get here we are probably very used to shady practices in our life of how to manipulate and make money from nothing and i think it is this process of recovery that helps us learn like there’s a reason we have to learn the spiritual principles you know in our version at least through the 12-step program there’s other programs that do it in other ways but there’s a reason that we have to be retaught these things and recover them right because we’ve lost them and and our way of life is very how do i get over on everyone around me i think we’re like the perfect candidates when we walk in the door to do that kind of work like yeah this feels like what i did before right i’m good at this yeah i think the shame is when you know it’s the person with 15 years clean who’s owning who owns the business and is running the business that’s the part that is more disappointing than you know the people that are working there with with six months or so yeah and i guess that’s more what i meant is that these are people in long-term recovery like say the guy that recruited you know my previous sponsor was someone in recovery that recruited him when he walked through the door like hey you’re good at talking to people why don’t you come you know rip off some companies for me this episode has been brought to you in part by voices of hope pink a non-profit recovery organization made up of people in recovery family members and allies together members strive to protect the dignity of those that use drugs and those in recovery by advocating for treatment harm reduction and support resources and mentoring please visit us at www.voicesofhopemaryland.org

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so to take this in a slightly different direction what about instead of the necessarily the work practices right the just the idea of does my on-the-job behavior demonstrate humility and loving service right like i think a lot of us go to work and we’re miserable and we probably have crappy attitudes maybe we’re not at the job we want maybe we don’t feel like we make enough money and there’s nothing wrong with any of those thoughts but how do we act on them while we’re there do i just go to work and understand that hey somebody’s paying me maybe not enough but they’re paying me to do a service right now and like that is my job today so i’m gonna do it to the best of my ability i’m not gonna take extra breaks in the bathroom on my phone i’m not gonna take hour long shits i’m not gonna like i’m not gonna you know steal material i’m not gonna like is it just am i not gonna treat my co-workers with disrespect right i’m not just gonna uh and i guess i always look back to my own experience like construction site work like people losing their [ __ ] minds and being angry with people around them or once mistakes happen like am i just being a you know i hate to just say just a good human being but am i practicing these principles just in the way i carry myself and my attitude right yeah maybe i am tired and i don’t really want to be here but this is what people pay me to do and i signed up to do that we created some contract to do that like am i carrying out my duties with humility and loving service in mind while i’m here so in my recovery practice in my normal life i’ve come to believe and come to experience that when i practice spiritual principles in my life things get better than if i just try to manipulate and do the easiest thing in that moment and i’ve come to have those experiences over and over and over again it’s like doing the right thing in the moment leads to better outcomes later on down the road um and that’s been my experience at work so you know more recently in the last couple years um i’ve taken on a different management role and i try to bring in a lot of the spiritual principles you know that i learned in my life into work honesty communication like making sure everybody’s getting what they need out of their job you know checking in with each individual employee hey how you doing how you feeling and i think overall that’s led to a much better attitude that carries through to everyone like people feel like they matter you know what i mean that they’re not just coming in to punch a clock and and being able to create that i don’t know what you want to call it like that sense of community and shared purpose and and a shared vision within our service department has led to a lot of success um so it’s like like say maybe you know practicing these principles and just trusting that the outcome’s going to work out the way it’s supposed to that’s been the case you know in the last couple years yeah i would say um i definitely have brought spiritual principles and and the practices i’ve learned in recovery into my careers and my jobs and um you know it’s it’s paid off dividends from me and i think it’s paid off for other people as well you know when i when i started where i work now um i didn’t manage anyone um so i didn’t really have as much of an impact on on other people at the company as i do today but certainly applying things like willingness and commitment and um perseverance things things of that nature to just my my job and my tasks um really helped me to to be recognized as a good employee and and get the benefits of that um and and now that i do manage people and i have a direct impact on on other people’s working life which let’s be honest i mean we we spend unfortunately in this country we spend a good portion of our working at our waking hours working like work ends up being a huge part of your life three day work week yeah um four hours a day three days yeah i can’t survive on that but more pain right

you know i with my employees i really try to make sure that they are are having a good experience um because i believe that when people are happy and they feel appreciated that’s when they’re going to be the most successful and the most productive but definitely trying to um you know i don’t view myself as their their boss so much as as like their co-worker and leader right um so it’s a good word yeah it’s not my job to micromanage them or or you know grind them down into the the the dirt if they do something wrong or you know like my my job is to enable them to to grow and become better not just in their job today but for for future jobs too um and i think that that that really pays off and i do that through humility is like a huge one like um i’m i take a very humble approach with my team in that i’m kind of always constantly seeking their feedback and like having them weigh in on on the different things that they are involved in um because i believe like two heads are better than one and democratic four heads are better than two and um you know like recognizing people’s intrinsic value and worth kind of regardless of where they maybe fall within the organization um but that all pays off for me too right like you know i i when i have a team that’s that’s happy they’re doing better work they’re you know rating me as as a as a boss or a manager as a leader better so that’s getting me recognized further up in the organization but it also just it sits right with me and i’m really fortunate and i think you guys can probably speak to this too that like after having been in this program for many years number of years i don’t know how you want to quantify i mean we’re all over a decade so um that behavior that way of treating other people does become second nature so it almost is just my instinct in in many cases to behave that way with my employees because that’s how i’ve learned to behave with humans with people you know i think uh i think the two heads are better than one principle is applied in the porn arena too um you know we mentioned that’s nice to go there yeah that’s lovely so we mentioned like uh angry at work or or you know cheating on your contractual obligation by taking too many breaks or too much time on break but like also one that came up for me is gossiping right like how how am i living at work am i frustrated by someone else’s lack of performance or job performance and i’m approaching them and talking about it like humbly and lovingly like hey look you know when you do this i feel like it makes my job harder and and i really wish we didn’t work this way or am i just going behind their back and talking to everybody else about how much they suck as an employee and how much i hate them because i feel like option two is probably the more common option and i’m not talking about for everybody else i’m talking about for me like i have done that at jobs in my life and you know so there’s these these little ways and i think these examples that we don’t think about sometimes like like gossiping is a huge thing in a work environment right a lot of people talk about their work feels like a soap opera i know we don’t talk about soap operas much in 2021 but i grew up with them so um yeah just what attitude am i carrying into my work right is it the same attitude i would carry into my family would i just talk behind one of my family members backs instead well maybe i would right i don’t know but maybe that’s also something i want to evaluate how would i handle it if i was being of service in the program or the fellowship that i’m involved in right would i carry my work duties out in the same manner would i be just as excited about work as i am about putting on an n a event or taking a meeting into a hospital and institution like what kind of vibe am i bringing to work and i think you both kind of spoke on that a little bit i don’t know i str that’s one area that i struggle the most and i will justify what i do by saying it’s not really gossip so what i will do is definitely not go to like the other so i supervise a group of guys that are all service mechanics and repair guys and you know they all have their own shortcomings and defects and you know i’m aware of what they are for the most case and occasionally they create problems some of it is the the soap opera aspect of things i one of my responsibilities i feel like is to like squash that [ _ ] before it has a chance to this guy said this and he did that and he was here but he didn’t do this and it made it harder for me you know all that [ _ ] i try to eliminate all of that it shouldn’t ever get past me amongst them but what i do to to vent some of that is i have another guy in the organization that’s like an equal level to me that i will call him and [ _ ] and complain and it probably is gossiping about you know [ _ ] this guy did this today and [ _ ] stupid you know but like and i’ve justified it by being like so there’s no like direct consequence to that guy for that and it helps me to get rid of it and let it go and then i can just like for for me personally like to do that then i’m done with it i don’t hang on to it i’m not carrying that over and stuffing it down it’s a way of venting it it’s probably not the best i mean i’m not going to sit here and say oh yeah that’s the way you should handle it because it’s probably not a good way to handle it but i feel like just stuffing it down isn’t right and if it is something that needs address with an individual i don’t have a problem going and talking to the individual about the situation um it’s usually just dumb [ _ ] that it’s like are you real aren’t you a grown [ _ ] adult do you really have to act like this in this situation like what i would argue and not really argue but i would point out for me at least in my experience with those type of situations the bene the the drawback or the repercussion for the individual is that i am continuing to spread a negative view of them amongst other individuals so next you know next week when they do something quote unquote dumb and the other manager has to deal with it he’s already coming in with this negative bias towards that individual the last dumb thing they did that he would have never even heard about but you had to talk about it and the success i found in that is talking to somebody outside of the whole thing about it right so i still get the opportunity to vent it’s just to somebody who doesn’t even know that person and doesn’t work there and doesn’t care and that provides the space to not stuff it down and it doesn’t come back and and carry on but i mean you know your setup might work for you right and maybe if that other manager is keyed into spiritual principles of like understanding that you’re just vending and it’s not about holding on to this and having this negative light you know cast over this person so well and it is funny because he does the same thing with me and we’ll tell each other that when we call like hey i’m just calling to to [ _ ] because i just gotta get this out and he’ll do the same thing with me he’ll be like i’m just calling to [ __ ] just get you know i just i gotta get rid of this so i’m telling you and i think that’s definitely different than gossiping um and i would also say one can make an argument that that that is providing transparency to the other manager like maybe it’s important for the manager to know the other things that are happening in the organization within the context of like that next time he has to deal with that employee now he knows what else is going on yeah but it’s a little different to have like hey just to let you know had an interaction with this guy these are the facts of what happened you know you might want to know that going forward in case we need to have some kind of repercussions against uh what’s going on bless you thank you that was me trying that’s my attempt to not totally blow my broken ribs out when i sleep so it’s one thing to present those facts but it’s another thing to be have an event session right because that’s a lot of probably extra that doesn’t just go into the facts of the situation i’m tying into that a little bit like and i think this is an idea look it’s a it’s been a biological imperative meaning it’s been good for us to stay alive to have a negativity bias right we notice what’s wrong in the environment because that keeps us safe and living so i get it we all have that to some extent some some of ours are more cultivated than others mine in particular i like to see what’s wrong not what’s right um but this idea of like when’s the last time i was looking for

positive behaviors or contributions from the people around me at work and pointing them out to them right like when’s the last time i told somebody dude you were doing such a great job today and i i really appreciate that you work here right and it doesn’t always have to be for the biggest things sometimes congratulating people for mundane things pumps them up to do better right and i just think that’s a great attitude to carry into our work environments and one that recognition is something i have not gotten much of in most of the jobs i’ve been at some but most probably not and and how much more would i want to go there or maybe i’d still be there if people were pointing out you’re doing a good job i really appreciate your help here it’s great i don’t feel like we do that enough so i almost feel like in your position you probably do that plenty we do it a lot we so we do a ton of pushes for that you know rate your experience with our service and blah blah blah and we get so much positive feedback anytime that a guy is specifically mentioned in a compliment or where they say like the service tech that came to our house or the guy we specifically pointed out to the guy hey so-and-so mentioned you in a comment you know things like that um speaking of the [ _ ] session though it reminded me of so there was a lot of like what felt like gossip amongst the service guys about different problems and issues and then i would hear it you know so and so was bitching about this or that so then i’d go to that person and be like hey you know i heard you didn’t you know it was an issue oh no no and then they act like they don’t know what you’re talking about because that’s their version of wanting to just [ _ ] about stuff so then we started like a monthly service meeting and there became an opportunity of like hey does anybody have complaints like now’s the time to bring it up you can bring it up in a group you can all gang up on me and tell me what i’m doing wrong or what things could be better or you know just take this as an opportunity to approach me you know individually and bring up what the problems are and addressing their problems when they actually have them because that’s the other thing if you make a situation where they can vent their problems or concerns but then do nothing they will stop telling you their problems and concerns you actually have to follow through on fixing problems or addressing issues if you want people to give them to you and uh by creating that space i think that’s helped a lot um but that’s also been an opportunity getting back to your compliments thing is where everyone and individuals get compliments during that time like in front of all their peers and all their co-workers you know so it’s it’s an opportunity there you know each service meeting to tell them what a great job they’re doing specifically what jobs they got extra compliments on things like that in front of their co-workers in front of their bosses and i think that helps a lot yeah so i actually had a conversation about this on friday so i feel like i i do a pretty good job of like any time i get something from uh from one of my employees that i feel like they did a good job at i i do a pretty good job of like great work thank you exclamation point x you know in the email uh smiley face sometimes i’m i’m i’m really big with the exclamation points um and and making a big deal out about it sometimes you know like one of my employees fixed like a graphic that that we had both kind of been contributing to um but she is a much stronger graphic designer than i am and she works a magical like she got it good and i i sent her an email and i was like oh my gosh so much better i i knew you could fix this and then i was like now i love it exclamation point explains great work or something like that but one of my peers i’ve noticed so our program our company has this program called bravo where you can like send people like appreciation awards and then they get these points and then the points can be used to buy gift cards or different items on this website and i noticed that he had been sending some of my employees bravo’s like i had gotten a couple because every time they get one i have to approve it and i message them and i’m like are you bravo in your employees at the same like the way you’re bravo in mine and he’s like yeah and i was like oh crap like i ha i don’t generally bravo my employees unless there’s something like really outstanding that they’ve done and i talked with him a little bit and kind of got a sense of the cadence he was doing it and like his use case and now i’m going to be making a better effort to really look for opportunities to to use that system more um so i think there’s i and i think that’s again that’s that’s something recovery taught me is that like there’s always room for growth there’s always room to get better at anything i’m trying to do so even though like i feel like i’m i’m a pretty good manager i know that i have opportunities to to be a better manager and i can seek those out and i can take in that feedback and and then try to implement it and i feel like that really does come from from recovery yeah being introspective and sort of maybe not formally but like taking an inventory of the situation what things are going good with things working well well things aren’t working so good right i mean and another with the humility piece another thing with individuals just like say principles i’ve learned in the program that i can take into work is you know certain employees certain guys that work with me have stronger skill sets and and weaker skill sets and i can sort of honestly evaluate that and put them in better situations to succeed instead of forcing them to all be like you know in a service industry some guys are better at certain things than others and i’ve gotten to know each individual guy instead of being mad that so and so can’t do this or that so and so is better at that i just try to put them in the situations that allow them to succeed you know it makes my job a little bit harder but it in the end makes it easier because then they’re set up for success and they’re not in a situation where they feel overwhelmed or doing something that they’re not capable of and you know just being able to to look at each person as an individual they’re not just service mechanics like they’re individuals with individual abilities and skills and treating them that way one question i i think might be a useful question to ask ourselves is if i were the customer that’s interacting with me or if i were my employer would i want 50 more of me like you know really evaluating like am i a contributor i like that employee right would somebody want more people just like me coming on or you know uh do i evaluate that and say oh yeah if they had 50 of me they’d probably go out of business in the goddamn bathroom all day looking at pornhub like i don’t know it’s interesting so it’s it’s hard to think of this from anything but my experience like i for whatever reason have just generally been a good employee i don’t know if that means i just buy in or i just hate myself enough that i want to do a good job and get validation but for whatever reason like i have always strived to you know get not really get recognized but just to do whatever i’m doing the right good way like even when i worked at mcdonald’s at 19 years old it was like i want to put the exact amount of mustard on this sandwich that’s supposed to be on this sandwich every [ _ ] time just because that’s how i’d like i don’t want to serve a burger where the burger’s half off and the cheese is half off the other direction and like i want this [ _ ] to look like it looks in a picture right or a burger that doesn’t have a burger in it yeah like whatever internal drive i had to make this picturesque model mcdonald’s burger right it’s not because they were paying me you know a billion dollars it was like six dollars an hour at that point actually i think it was like five dollars an hour at that point in time and i don’t know what that drive was so it’s hard for me to understand completely what it’s like to be a shitty employee i i think there’s been times when i got a little disenfranchised with my jobs and probably wasn’t the greatest employee anymore but even me at like half ass was still pretty decent yeah so it’s hard to picture just wanting to go in and be bad or wanting to get just a paycheck and not do a good job like for me it wasn’t even about the paycheck i just did a good job because i’m motivated by some other [ _ ] inside me so i learned an interesting concept listening to uh some some literature i say listening to literature like that sounds weird but there’s an audio book on the adult children of alcoholics and they had a concept in there i guess they call it basic text in their text that was this idea that our character defects become rewarded outside of our individual lives like society-wise our character defects are rewarded and so for me my success at work has probably been more due to that is that i am a people pleaser and an overachiever and so that looks really good to an employer when you’re a people pleaser and an overachiever because you’ll go above and beyond and you want everything to be good and you want everybody to like you and get your approval so yeah interesting yeah i would i’m not a people pleaser at all definitely not i’m definitely not um but i i probably am an overachiever and that’s interesting because i was thinking jason when you were talking you said you know i don’t understand people who don’t want to do a good job and i was thinking well maybe they just haven’t had the experience of how good it feels to to do a good job in and of itself not for the recognition but just to know that like i set out to do this thing and i did it well and i accomplished it and that’s a good feeling but maybe we’re all three just overachievers and other people don’t get value from that feeling i don’t know and i think what you’re saying kind of ties in you know we did that polyvagal uh episode that was about the different states of the nervous system and how it reacts to dangerous cues um listen to it it’s kind of interesting but maybe people don’t get that reward right like we have an intrinsic reward system that feeds us based on how it’s programmed and so whatever reason we three seem to be programmed to the fact that like you know oh doing good and people giving pats on the back yay i’m good boy right that’s great um other people might be rewarded by the feeling of doing nothing like that might be the reward like oh it feels good to not [ _ ] do work her job was to sit in one of those little tiny cubicle boxes in the city and like she at a gas station and she just managed the pumps at the gas station handed out cigarettes and she loved it she would sit there for eight hours and do nothing like that was great right so everybody’s programmed to get a reward in their own way and that that would make this trickier right that would make but i think the question like what are my motives for doing my best at this job am i trying to get a raise am i trying to get promoted am i trying to get recognized am i just trying to feed this inner emptiness still just through work you know achievement of doing a good job and being happy with it or is my motive really to serve others right because i think maybe that’s the most spiritually principled centered places am i just here to do the best job at serving others and that’s probably a stance i don’t think i’ve ever thought that question at any of my jobs maybe the one i currently have but but not so much in any other position like am i serving others well it’s am i doing a good job and that’s two totally different questions i think right yeah i would say for my job when i started and i wasn’t looking for a job that had anything to do with serving others and on the surface what i was doing didn’t necessarily appeal appear to be serving others i was writing documents to further our our sales basically um and uh but what i realized after i had been in the job for a while was one of the things i liked best about it was that in writing those documents i was directly helping other people within our business and i i loved that i loved being able to help other people within the business and get them what they need and do these things that maybe they weren’t so good at doing themselves or finding them the information they need like that was one of the things i loved most about my job and so i think there are a lot of jobs where it maybe doesn’t on its surface like obviously jason your your job on its surface very much appears to be a job about helping others like that is what it is but i think most jobs there is a a component to that whether it’s just like your co-worker or um you know if you’re a janitor and the people that are going to come and use the building i appreciate four hours later yeah like like there’s all i think there’s always that that way to kind of frame i can’t think of a a job where you’re not in some way helping someone else so yeah or maybe you know instead of like for myself just focusing on serving our customers it’s also to serve the employees and the people that work for me you know it’s like not just about outside of our organizations within the organization how am i serving those people that i work with as well yeah the the view of the customer is always right is usually to the detriment of the employee that was dealing with the customer that might be out of order right like yeah sometimes the employee messed up but sometimes the employee didn’t and the customer’s just not satisfied and you know a manager might step in and appease the customer is always right idea but that kind of really invalidates the employee in that moment right so we need to do have a balance of you know stepping up for both of those people yeah the customer is important and their feelings matter but so does our people um and and i think at least for me the last piece i had of this is like can i carry the spiritual principle of trust into my work that if i live in spiritual principles without manipulating the outcomes it’ll work out well for me right is can i trust in that idea that if i just show up if i just live in these spiritual principles do my best job for the right reasons of trying to help the world will that get me what i need in life whether that’s enough money to get by whether that’s you know a promotion or recognition that comes with that can i trust that or do i need feel the need to like not trust and kind of manipulate the situation to get the raises that i think i deserve or things of that nature i don’t think you can always trust that within every organization or every job but i think that if you act in those ways and you start to see that your contributions are still not being valued or you’re not seeing indications of the progress you’re looking for or you’re getting to a point where you hate your job that’s an indication that okay it’s time for me to to make it make a switch i mean i i really believe like i said like people spend so much of their life working if you hate your job you’re gonna be a miserable person like there’s i don’t think there’s a way around that um so i would encourage anyone who hates their job figure out what it is you hate about it and find something even if it’s still not your dream job find something that’s not going to have that thing you hate well and i think this kind of ties into that a little bit this idea of how much we work you’ve said that a couple times today uh the people who are driven so much to do a good job at work that maybe they’re not doing the greatest job in their family and i don’t know if that ties into how do we carry spiritual principles into our home life episode or if that falls more into this or somewhere in between but yeah is am i following this spiritual principle idea of like yes i’ve given my company there signed up for amount of hours and now i’m gonna go home because my day’s over and it’s time for me to be of service elsewhere like this this idea that like i don’t have to continue to go above and beyond for my job but to the detriment of the other parts of my life that matter i think that’s valuable too because there’s a lot of companies that make you feel like over time is like necessary or if you don’t you won’t be viewed well and and can i carry my spiritual principles of like trusting that the outcome of that will be well you might not view me well but i do a good job while i’m here and it’s time for me to go home my day’s done yeah and i think that speaks to you know companies have companies have culture right every company has a unique culture and that culture generally aligns with values and principles of its own so if you’re working at a company that maybe doesn’t have the same values and principles you have that could be another indication that it’s time to make change you know the company i work at does have a value of like employee autonomy and flexibility and work-life balance like these are things that they explicitly say is is important to them and i see the ramifications of that but then on the flip side too i’m a salaried employee so i don’t have work hours i have an expectation of work product and sometimes that does mean that i have to work longer than an eight-hour day to accomplish my my objectives with my work product so understanding that too right like are you salaried or are you our lead what is what are the expectations you signed up for when you took the job and are you meeting those expectations while also still being able to balance the other things in your life well and we’re talking you know you mentioned culture like when we’re talking about carrying spiritual principles into our jobs the big question i guess would be does this company’s vision culture and bottom line align up enough with my vision culture and bottom line that that’s possible right because if they are too out of alignment like well this probably is not going to work yeah right i was lucky in in my job i realized that i had some influence over the culture like i was in a position of authority enough that i could either just sit back and be a product of that culture or i could try to make some active changes to kind of change the culture a little bit right and i mean i think we’ve done that to some degree so getting to our hour mark any more thoughts about work and spiritual principles that we want to add in just for me i think liv working for a company that has shared values or that i can live by the values that i believe in it makes my life and my job so much easier you know i mean it’s i don’t go home in these ethical dilemmas and things and there was a time in my life where i felt like i was doing that and i don’t do that anymore i do a good job i feel like the people that work for me and with me are happy and and feel confident about themselves and i feel good about the work we do and and it’s not like say it’s not overly emotionally rewarding but you know we live by values and principles that we share we’re honest we’re hard working we do a good job we don’t try to take advantage of people like there are things like that that just they might not be overly outwardly rewarding but there’s a sense of relief in living that way a peace that comes in living that way and being able to work in an environment that is that way yeah and i think another thing to note is that there can be subcultures too like you could be working for a big organization that maybe the culture of the organization as a whole is not really super aligned to to your values and principles but you know within potentially your department or your area there’s a little bit of a different culture in place and and and that works better for you so it doesn’t always have to be you know i think of like amazon and like do i do i feel like i align with their culture and values no but could there be a place at amazon for me where where you know it’s far enough removed from kind of the top that it does have a different feel or or value you don’t humbly lovingly want to send jeff bezos into space my god what’s wrong with your spiritual principles uh yeah and i would say uh you know the first step to anything is awareness right like this might be something we’ve just never thought of so let’s question ourselves what spiritual principles am i enacting at work right am i honest am i open-minded am i willing am i being of humble service am i here just to be of service to others and do the best i can am i trying to be loving in my actions like just questioning ourselves like what does this actually look like in my life who am i really um and then from there we get to make the adjustments when we have the awareness of what we see that we don’t like yeah just like other spiritual principles you know we learn about in recovery just try it and see try to practice those principles and see if it makes a difference make it till you make it there you go all right stay safe did you like this episode share it with people you think might get something out of it check out the rest of our episodes at recoveryswordof.com also while you’re there you can find ways to link up with us on facebook twitter instagram reddit youtube anything we’re always looking for new ideas got an idea you want us to look into reach out to us

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