Every Organization Needs A Superhero!

When Do-Gooding Ends Badly, How Do You Cope?


Aug 28, 2016 Advocacy, Career Mamma, Colors, digital story telling, Leadership , , , 6 Comments

A very dear friend and work buddy of mine is going through a rough patch. A program that she worked hard to fund and develop was hijacked by an overbearing colleague who was once a friend and trusted collaborator. I worked on the project too, and watched the train wreck play out over a few months period of time. Never have I witnessed so much deceit, manipulation and crafty, fraudulent behavior in the workplace. The project is still moving forward, but those of us with scruples exited before the major inevitable damage takes place. We feared that people might get hurt, live in unsafe conditions and catapult a great movement backward 20 years. The entire experience was sad, reckless and I hope to never encounter anything like it again in my career.

With chats over lunch meetings, happy hours and at backyard parties, I have come to realize that this sort of story is quite the norm for many professionals. Almost everyone I have conversed with about this tale had their own equally terrible and recent story to share…some had two and three! SO…I ASK, WHAT IS GOING ON?

In the unpredictable world we live in, I get that this sort of thing happens in politics and I have certainly seen some manipulative behavior play out during holidays at my family’s dinner table, but this rampant, territorial, stab you in the back behavior from trusted colleagues, I just don’t understand.

The processing of this experience caused both my friend and I to have several esoteric discussions about just desserts. We needed to develop new coping skills to successfully avoid our feelings of revenge and rage, and most importantly, we needed help with how to digest, accept and move on to accomplish the good deeds we set out to achieve in the first place.

In our discussions, the concept of karma came up many times. Google says the definition of karma, a noun, is “the sum of a person’s actions in this and previous states of existence, viewed as deciding their fate in future existences. Informally, it is 
destiny or fate, following as effect from cause.”

In the next few weeks I will be exploring karma and what it means to us in modern times. I will be delving into the spectrum of karma, the different ways karma has been adapted by our pop culture and the traditional ways karma still has an influence over (some of) us.

I invite you all to tell me about your stories that relate to your feelings and beliefs about karma. I am developing a coping tool that I will pilot; in an attempt to approach a more scientific view and interaction of what many feel is just a spiritual dogma.

If you do not want your story to be viewed by the public, but still want to share, please email me at: gracealfiero@gmail.com. Do-Gooders of the world, you have a safe home here!

#karmaisthebestmedicine, #karmicintentions, #noroomformeanpeople

-Grace Alfiero


  • Sara Faircloth
    Aug 28, 2016 at 4:50 pm Reply

    Excellent post, Grace-Anne. As you know, I’m old enough to be at the very least, your mother. That means I’ve been in this profession we share for lots and lots of years. Unfortunately, what you talk about is nothing new or unusual in the field. It is always disheartening, frustrating, and tests our faith in people. I don’t know about karma or anything like that. What I do know and have experienced and seen among so many of my friends, many of OUR friends is that you walk away, head held high, knowing in your heart your intentions were good. Toxic people exist in every walk of like. I’ve seen it in the ministry, in nonprofit, and in higher ed….all fields that are designed to do good things. Another thing that needs doing will come along and fit your passion and your skills. You will be wiser, maybe a little more cautious of people, but you will have the opportunity to keep doing good. The thing you won’t do is allow them to change who you are and what your purpose is! XXOO

    1. grace alfiero
      Aug 31, 2016 at 2:47 pm Reply

      Sara…you always have the voice of true wisdom! Thank you for your comment! Gina sure did win the mommy lottery! SMOOCHES!!!

  • Marta
    Aug 28, 2016 at 6:05 pm Reply

    Sorry you had this horrific experience Grace! Karma, to me, equals consequences. I may not live to see them get what they deserve, but I do get the blessing of having first hand knowledge of that person’s lack of integrity and polluted people-skills.

    1. grace alfiero
      Aug 31, 2016 at 2:43 pm Reply

      Marta, thank you! To be honest it was both horrific and enlightening and it has opened soooo many more doors and opportunities. SO in hindsight, in a very weird way, I am sort of glad that it happened! It definitely solidified and focused the workgroup and now our future endeavors are more defined. How are you lady! I hope you will be traveling thru Philly soon so we can connect in person! Thank you so much for your post!

  • Lisa P
    Aug 31, 2016 at 2:24 am Reply

    Karma is not medicine or punishment. It is not a payback in this life. It is a seed planted with every single thought, word, breath and action. It is germinated and born out in the next life. Sara is right. This crap happens every day, in offices and schools, labs and chambers all over our planet. For our own karmic sake we continue to work towards alleviating suffering, towards compassion and goodness. And sometimes towards a really strong margarita with our girlfriends. March on, do-gooder. Nothing but love and respect for all you give to the world. X

    1. grace alfiero
      Aug 31, 2016 at 2:40 pm Reply

      Lisa, I love your comment and how you framed your response! Now for that really strong margarita! When can we meet up again? Hopefully soon!

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