Would you rather get even or get AHEAD?


It’s been said that the world would be an ideal place to live if it wasn’t for people. Working with people is not always a walk in the park.  People are stressed out with their lives day in and day out for only a handful of reasons and one of the biggest ones is dealing with difficult people.  What makes them difficult is that everyone’s agenda is not the same.  We all have goals and plans and when they don’t match up is when turmoil is encountered.


Linda has a business agenda of improving profits by raising customer’s renewal fees by one percent.  She proposes the plan to her boss in an office meeting and he loves it.  Not only will this allow the luxury of an increase of production, but it will also allow them to retain three positions within the company that they would be forced to let go due to not being able to pay them.


The only person who raises any questions is David.  David is opposed to the idea.  As a matter of fact he doesn’t like it at all.  He knows he will be part of the group that will field the customer’s phone calls about the price increase.  David also has an agenda.  His agenda is to retain his customers and not be hassled with phone calls and complaints.  He has worked hard to build a system of ease.  He has streamlined everything to function with very little involvement.  This new “policy” will really hamper his work life of ease.


David reminds everyone how Linda has had an idea in the past and how it didn’t work out.  Linda along with the rest of everyone else in the meeting is a little taken back.  He voices the rest of his opinions along with a couple more backhanded complements.  The meeting concludes and the boss elects to move forward with Linda’s plan anyway.


Linda has a great opportunity to work her plan and see the process through.  This would be a tremendous feather in her cap.  Not only would she increase profits, but she would save the careers of three people.  She has the chance to be a modern day hero.


Linda however does the opposite.  Her agenda has shifted. It has moved from doing something noble and necessary to something darker.  Her new agenda is to DESTROY David!! She will prove him incompetent, lazy, selfish, and downright evil. At every turn she is passively aggressively attacking him and his actions from backhanded comments to coworkers about David to not communicating critical information that he needs. Some people would rather get even than get ahead. 


When their agendas crossed paths they not only met but actually collided and set both off course from their original destination.  Have you ever done this?  I bet you have.  It’s happened to me.  Just the other day a utility truck cut me off in traffic.  I was very upset. I could feel my blood pressure instantly rise.  I followed him for a short distance.  I was bound and determined to get his tag number. Why? I don’t know.  I would have never reported him; I just wanted him to see me recording it to put a scare in him that I might.  Before I realized it I had driven two miles past my turn.  Then it hit me as to what I was doing.


Ancient scripture says to not repay evil for evil.  Vengeance is not ours.  It is left to a higher power.  God will bless those who bless us and curse those who curse us.  Our responsibly is to not set everything right, but to do the right thing at all times and become a better person.


Do you want to be get even, or do you want to be happy?


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13 thoughts on “Would you rather get even or get AHEAD?

  1. calmgirl06 says:

    Sometimes it’s worth waiting awhile before responding to these situations. Whilst our human response initially would be to get even we usually feel differently after a literal pause for thought!

  2. I would hope that I always choose to get ahead… great post – thanks!

  3. Can’t I sometimes pick both?
    Great post! It is so very hard, as humans, to put aside our ego and focus on getting ahead, doing the right thing, or even putting God first. Our ego is a powerful thing and can rule us if we allow it. It is very hard to step aside and put our ego away; however, if we do, it is amazing the things that we can accomplish. My prayers every morning are to let everything I do come from a place of love, so that I can set aside my selfish needs and desires and help myself get ahead, and not get even. I think we’d be surprised how often it helps others get ahead, too.

  4. erickoelma says:

    Great post. Thanks for sharing. We can only ever justify our own choices in how we respond.

  5. Rajiv says:

    This happens all too often. Getting even is what blocks us. It makes us happy for a while, and becomes obsessive. Sadly, all too often

  6. […] a very mature approach, one in keeping with the overall positive spirit Ryan displays. In a post on Today’s Manager, Cranston Holden shared the experience of someone who took the opposite […]

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