Working in a family business can be incredibly challenging on your psyche! Not only do you have the normal wear and tear of work, but then you add the complexity of family dynamics and family history.
If you’re going to not only survive but actually achieve peace and happiness in the family business, you better get good at practicing forgiveness.
People will disappoint you if you let them.
People make mistakes.
Family members can say things that are hurtful.
No one said life was fair, especially life in the family business.
Other people have their own challenges, demons, and dark sides they’re working through.
When the disappointments of life turn into anger, frustration and resentment, all of those types of energy can leave you feeling helpless, or like a victim.
When you can learn to practice forgiveness you can take a major step toward restoring your energy and your happiness in life. Hanging on to disappointments and resentment is like keeping big rocks in your knapsack — it can weigh you down and make life more difficult than it needs to be.
Forgiveness is a gift you can give yourself and the other person. It’s a choice.
When you can practice forgiveness you can provide an opening for a new future in your relationships with people. I’m not suggesting to simply forget about the past or pretend it didn’t happen. I’m suggesting you acknowledge what happened, learn from it, and still move forward.
If other people continue to make the same mistakes or cause additional damage without remorse or any effort for their own personal Improvement, then those are people you shouldn’t spend your life with. That could mean leaving the family business — I did after a 16-year career in my family business. Take responsibility for your own health and happiness.
Acceptance is another important muscle to build. Accept that others have shortcomings and style differences that can rub you the wrong way. You can make a conscious decision not to allow those shortcomings to cause negative energy within you. We often time tell clients, “Don’t give YOUR power away” — in other words, don’t allow their shortcomings to cause you to get angry.
Take the high road, be a leader, lead by example in your business and all areas of your life.
The best quote I saw recently on this subject was:
Grace is when somebody hurts you and you try to understand their situation instead of trying to hurt them back.
When you can build the muscle of forgiveness in all areas of your life you’ll be on a course to long-term success and happiness.
If you’re continuing to struggle with it we have an exercise in our Family Business Coaching System called Forgive and Forge Ahead. Check it out here.
LANDMINE DETECTION MAP
Are you battling next-generation issues, in-law drama, sibling rivalries or even health-related problems due to stress in your family business? The Landmine Detection Kit will help you identify underlying issues that eventually could create catastrophic damage to your family business.