Revenge May Be Sweet, But Like Saccharine, It Leaves An Aftertaste

By
Services for Real Estate Pros with TheHousingGuru.com

man sticking pins in dollAt some time almost all of us have suffered insults or worse from others and have secretly longed for a way to even the score, to avenge ourselves and gain retribution for the wrongdoing. And while vindication may temporarily soothe our feelings, such acts have the potential to harm us more than the offender.

 

It’s the “burning bridges” concept. We just never know when such actions may come back to “bite” us, when we may need to call upon the offender. Bridges can be crossed, that is, we can walk away from bad or obnoxious behavior; but if we “blow” the bridge, we lose the option of returning; and those on the other side are forever exiled. It doesn’t matter whether the situation involves friends, family, or business associates. It’s always best to seek the “high ground” from which we both gain a better perspective of the terrain and separation from the fray.

 

Maintaining your cool keeps you in control of the both the situation and your reaction, and it allows you to exercise your options. When you are wronged you always have choices.

• You can go into attack mode.

• You can try to shame the offender.

• You can ignore the offense.

• You can look inward to see if your actions or behavior may have contributed to the conduct.

• You can reach out to the offender and try to remove the differences that separate you.

 

Some might object, saying that to ignore the offense or to placate the offender shows weakness. I would suggest the opposite; that it shows both strength and character. And in so doing we are the ultimate winners. By refusing to be drawn into petty or destructive behavior we demonstrate our professionalism and our self-control, and we fail to allow ourselves to be pulled into the black hole of negative thought and action.

 

Sure, revenge may be sweet, but like saccharine, it leaves an aftertaste—and also like saccharine, it’s artificial and bad for your health.

 

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Ambassador
1,894,639
Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Sometimes it is very hard not to want to just lash out and let someone have it between the eyes.  But as you say it often can come back to haunt you in ways that you never imagined. 

Aug 29, 2009 09:28 AM #3
Rainmaker
456,240
John Mulkey
TheHousingGuru.com - Waleska, GA
Housing Guru

Edward - And definitely not always easy to do.

Liz - I keep the voodoo doll for those times when I can't follow my advice : )

Cindy - Those sorts of negative actions can haunt us forever.

Aug 29, 2009 09:33 AM #4
Rainmaker
194,059
Mary Strang
Viroqua, WI

Which of the 5 bullet choices used will depend on how egregious the act was. Mostly, however, I agree it is best to not burn bridges in the real estate business world. Stealing, lying and fraud are reasons to burn a bridge, but being out maneuveredby a quicker and techier agent is fair game.

Aug 29, 2009 09:46 AM #5
Rainer
41,037
Jane Penttinen
V.I.P. Mortgage - Tucson, AZ
NMLS #222178

the high road is sometimes tougher - but the view is always better

Aug 29, 2009 10:56 AM #6
Rainmaker
456,240
John Mulkey
TheHousingGuru.com - Waleska, GA
Housing Guru

Mary - Yes, all bets are off if the offense involves dishonesty.

Jane - Nice analogy.

Aug 29, 2009 12:13 PM #7
Rainer
297,808
Gloria Laughton Allston
COLDWELL BANKER RESIDENTIAL BROKERAGE - Princeton, NJ
Realtor(NJ)/Broker(NY)

I absolutely agree with you ABSOLUTELY!!!!!!

Aug 30, 2009 01:30 AM #8
Rainmaker
456,240
John Mulkey
TheHousingGuru.com - Waleska, GA
Housing Guru

Gloria - Does that mean you really agree?  : )

Aug 30, 2009 01:31 AM #9
Rainer
33,198
Robert Solomon/Broker/Owner
I Net Realty Group, Inc. - Hudson, FL

I think you are right but sometimes I lash out in my head and feel better about it and keep smiling.

Aug 30, 2009 01:34 AM #10
Rainmaker
456,240
John Mulkey
TheHousingGuru.com - Waleska, GA
Housing Guru

Robert - That can somtimes relieve the "pressure."

Aug 30, 2009 01:38 AM #11
Rainer
288,281
Leslie Helm
Tennessee Recreational Properties - Jamestown, TN
Real Estate For Trail Riders

You know that old adage, "Coat your words with honey; you never know when you'll have to eat them."  This is especially true in real estate; you can't guarantee that you'll never encounter that seller, that buyer, that customer, that client, that agent, that home inspector, that termite guy etc. etc. ever again so you had better be prepared to have to call them or see them....easier to do if you haven't blown up the bridge.

Aug 30, 2009 01:40 AM #12
Rainmaker
456,240
John Mulkey
TheHousingGuru.com - Waleska, GA
Housing Guru

Leslie - Good advice. You don't want to have to eat those nasty words.

Aug 30, 2009 01:45 AM #13
Rainmaker
427,786
June Tassillo
Owner/Broker RE/MAX Elite Realty - Franklin, NC
Let me help you with the next phase of your life!

John great post!  I agree with you all the way.  I have learned not to jump so fast when something comes up.  I usually wait a day, see where I had contributed to it if any and move on.  Stirring or plotting revenge takes too much of my energy.  Once in a while someone will get my goat.  It all depends on my state of mind that day.  If I'm not in a good mood to begin with it may be another situation that is really bothering me.  Its human nature to want to correct something that isn't right in your mind or you don't agree with. 

Aug 30, 2009 01:54 AM #14
Ambassador
2,759,191
Lenn Harley
Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate - Leesburg, VA
Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland

Keep your eye on the goal and server your client's needs.

When dealing with an abrasive adversary, say as little as possible.  Get the job done and put the entire thing behind you. 

Then make a doll.

 

Aug 30, 2009 01:57 AM #15
Rainmaker
456,240
John Mulkey
TheHousingGuru.com - Waleska, GA
Housing Guru

June - Yes, it's human nature, and when we can avoid allowing our more "base" side to control, we win.

Lenn - Good advice, but keep the doll for later use.

Aug 30, 2009 02:43 AM #16
Rainer
257,323
Kathleen Frawley
Keller Williams 916 730-4404 Elk Grove, Wilton, Folsom, Sacramento - Wilton, CA
South County Sacramento, 916 730 4404

Good advise.  Forgiveness is free.  Revenge takes emotional energy...It's not in my budget

Aug 30, 2009 09:30 AM #17
Rainmaker
456,240
John Mulkey
TheHousingGuru.com - Waleska, GA
Housing Guru

Kathleen - That's a good way of looking at the situation.

Aug 30, 2009 10:02 AM #18
Ambassador
531,313
Mirela Monte
Buyers' Choice Realty - North Myrtle Beach, SC
Myrtle Beach Real Estate

When people do bad things that impact others adversely, I feel sorry for them, for I know what they have coming: Karma.  What goes around comes around.  What you give comes back only stronger...  I don't need to take any steps to even out the score; Life does it for me...

We have a saying in Romania:  "God does not slap with his hand..." 

 

 

Aug 30, 2009 12:16 PM #19
Rainmaker
456,240
John Mulkey
TheHousingGuru.com - Waleska, GA
Housing Guru

Mirela - You get it; but too many don't.  And yes, I don't need to see what the "big slap" might be.

Aug 30, 2009 12:19 PM #20
Rainer
437,789
Terry Chenier
Homelife Glenayre Realty - Mission, BC

John,

Good post. I always try to take the high road; it pays off most times.

Aug 31, 2009 03:31 PM #21
Rainmaker
456,240
John Mulkey
TheHousingGuru.com - Waleska, GA
Housing Guru

Terry - But as Lenn suggested, keep the doll just in case : )

Sep 01, 2009 12:12 AM #22
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John Mulkey

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