Sometimes we find ourselves in a work environment that calls for a mobile morphine drip just to get through the day. I know; I’ve been there—when you’re working with people whose ethics would make a vulture retch; when you’re tempted to amputate your boss’s limbs with a very blunt scalpel—and no anesthetic; when the thought of another day in that hellhole makes you want to jump off the nearest building. But because of your circumstances, you have to hang in there just a little while longer. Keeping your self in sight at times like this can be challenging in the extreme. But it can be done.

Rule #1 Resistance is an invitation to push against you harder. Disconnect mentally and emotionally from the person or situation as often as you can. Buying into it will allow it to suck you in, contaminate you and make you an active participant. Your body might have to temporarily be there—but your mind and emotions do not.

Rule #2 Shift your perception. This job is not using you—you are using it—to get where you really want to go. Refuse to become the victim. Use the experience to motivate your momentum towards something better.

Rule #3 Stay in alignment with your principles as much as possible. Lead by example. Be the change you would like to see, regardless of what’s going on around you.

Rule #4 Develop an escape plan—study, apply for other positions, teach, research, gather information, strengthen your weak links, explore all the options, network, collaborate or develop a second income. Let this be your place of inspiration and affirmation. While you may not be appreciated in one environment, what you gain in satisfaction is valuable beyond measure in another. Your passport to freedom is reclaiming and developing the only thing you have absolute control over—you.

If you repeatedly find yourself in miserable situations, be they relationships, work, communications, financial or health related, have you considered that the source of these problematical patterns might originate inside you? Okay, I can hear you scream are you insane? My spouse is an abusive monster, my boss behaves like a rabid buffalo, my work’s as stimulating as studying the mating habits of snails, people I try to communicate with act like I’m speaking in a foreign tongue, my finances lurch from crisis to crisis and my body is staging a  full blown rebellion! So I’ll repeat the question have you considered that the source of your problems might originate inside you? Why does this pattern keep repeating; would you like to change these experiences?

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