“Dealing with backstabbers, there was one thing I learned. They’re only powerful when you got your back turned.”
I’ve been at the receiving end of some nasty backstabbing. I was new to this team I joined and I was supposed to be just an engineer or support staff (which was what I applied for) and I was but only for around 2 weeks before my new boss decided that he can get more out of me by making me a team lead.
The team I joined had mostly senior technicians who have been there for more than three years and some of them didn’t take my sudden promotion that easily.
We were civil when we crossed paths. We even cracked jokes most of the time and we were all friends in Facebook but I heard a different story every time I’m not around.
I was given different names whenever they have their “anti-Noel discussions”. I’ve been labeled an amateur, inefficient, and some took it a notch higher by branding me “stupid”.
On the one hand I did understand where they were coming from. How can you take orders from the new guy right? They’ve been there for the longest time and they knew all the ins and outs of the job and here I am, barely a month into my new role already running the show.
The thing I didn’t get was that the same position was offered to them and they refused. Now that I took it, they can’t accept it. Talk about sour graping huh?
You know what they say about being the subject of rumors when you’re not around? That is absolutely true especially if the people talking about you are in the same wavelength.
It wasn’t easy for me and I would admit that there were times when the things they said really got in my nerves but I’ve learned how to deal with it and this is what I’m going to share with you.
1. Drop them out of your life
You don’t need to have a relationship with people who are hell-bent on bringing you down so just cut them off. You don’t need to be friends with everyone be it co-workers or acquaintances. Accept the fact that there are people that were not meant to be your friends. That’s a fact of life.
Unfriend or block them from your social media accounts, remove their phone numbers from your address book, don’t be all chummy with them when you’re with them face-to-face.
You don’t need people like these in your life so don’t waste your time trying to win them over. You know who you are and what you are so don’t let the rumors they’re spreading about you get to you.
2. Keep yourself from retaliating
This is one of the biggest mistakes I’ve made when I dealt with these backstabbing. I just can’t keep myself from getting right back at them.
I remember posting quotes about negative people as a way of “blindly” getting back at them and I made sure I didn’t mention any names though it was almost clear as daylight who that post was for.
They pissed me off so I’m gonna piss them off too. WRONG!
If I can do it all over again, I never would have resorted to those tactics. Why? Because by doing that, I am no better than who they are. I just added fuel to the fire.
I should have kept quiet and laughed at whatever lies they were spreading about me. So if you ever get into the same position as I did, don’t get affected.
As the law of attraction states, think more of what you want than those of what you don’t want.
3. As much as you can, try not to talk about it
As tempting as it may be, try not to talk about it with your friends or known allies. Doing so will only make the situation worse and will make you look defensive. If you need to vent, do it outside of work or away from the “crime scene” so to speak.
It is natural for us to seek the solace of someone close to us when we are being oppressed. It’s usually the first thing that comes to mind but you have to consider the person you will be talking to and the venue where you will be having the conversation because you will just be mirroring what your backstabbers are doing if you’re not careful.
4. Let it go!
I know this is easier said than done because in times like these, we have the tendency to get consumed by our anger. We tend to get more focused and sometimes become even more creative in crafting our comeback. I learned that doing this only made me a lot angrier. It lessened my productivity and happiness. it ruined my mood.
It’s natural for us to get hurt especially if the rumors that are being spread against us are as nasty and and as insulting as they come but you can’t let those things get in the way of your happiness.
Just like what Elsa from Frozen said, “let it go.” Taking away all the hate and all the negative thoughts will make you feel better. TRUST ME ON THIS!
5. Take the high road
I firmly believe that you cannot right a wrong with another wrong. Fighting back will never resolve anything. It would just escalate the problem and make it bigger than it already is. What was once a war of words behind each other’s back may eventually lead to a full-blown, face-to-face fight.
Be the better person and just walk away. Don’t waste your time trying to defend yourself or fighting fire with fire because it’s not worth it.
Turn the other cheek. Smile, and get on with the more important stuff.
6. Prove them wrong through action
Remember what I said about not getting back at your backstabbers? Well, you don’t wanna get back at them with words or justification but rather, with action.
You don’t have to do anything special. Just being gracious and composed throughout the whole thing already speaks volumes about you. It will make everyone realize that the things you are being accused of are absolutely false.
I love the TV show House MD and one of his most memorable quotes that resonated with me when it came to this topic was:
“If nobody hates you, you’re doing something wrong.”
7. Learn from the experience
My philosophy in life is that every experience, good or bad, has valuable life lessons it leaves us with. In this case, being the victim of backstabbing will definitely help you learn more not only about your haters but also about yourself.
Some of the things I learned from my oh-so-great backstabbing experience are the following:
- People are different from one another. Some has conscience, some don’t.
- I didn’t have a lot of patience in me.
- I was the tendency to retaliate.
- I can’t shake negative feeling off that easily
- Sometimes I have a big mouth.
By recognizing these things, I believe I experienced growth. I can now say that if I ever get into another backstabbing incident again that I will be ready and I will know what to do and what not to do.
Over to You
When was the last time you’ve been backstabbed? How did you deal with it?
I would love to hear your stories so please share them here by leaving a comment.
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