"Do not be agitated by evildoers; do not envy those who do wrong. For they wither quickly like grass and wilt like tender green plants. Trust in the Lord and do what is good; dwell in the land and live securely. Take delight in the Lord, and you will be given your heart's desires. Quiet down and be prayerful before God. Don’t bother with those who climb the ladder, who elbow their way to the top." (Psalm 37)
We have all come across women who chose to discourage us instead of encourage us; to harm us rather than help us and prey on us instead of praying for us. We have encountered women who treated us as though we were out of place and didn't deserve to be in that elevated place where God called us to be all along. These women were so busy looking at our appearances and abilities (or the lack thereof) that they remained in one place. That's what negativity does. When we have evil in our hearts toward someone so much that we prefer speaking negatively behind their backs, there is a root. The root more than likely is self-hate, envy and bitterness and it has the power to block our very own destiny.
Ideally, women (in our nurturing make-up) will choose to come together and support one another to break every glass ceiling that persists, but we don't. We are often our own worse enemies in a world where we make up over half the population globally, yet we are seen as less than. From owning a significantly less than amount of land and sitting on the boards of Fortune 500 companies in less than numbers, we have a long way to go. Yet, we consume the most and studies even show that women enroll and graduate from college in record numbers in comparison to men today. Even if "coming together" seems far-fetched to some, we definitely should avoid tearing one another down. Without dwelling on the negativity of the event further, let's discuss the messages in Sheryl Underwood's reaction.
"Sometimes it's better to react with no reaction." (Unknown)
- Sheryl Underwood listened and didn't react. Oftentimes we react in an instant and in a way that causes more harm. We even allow what we hear others say about us cripple and intimidate us. Instead, she took the negativity and turned it into a teachable moment. She made a choice to listen throughout the conference call and improve herself based on their criticism with hopes of becoming better. She used their words as strength and fuel to get to the elevated place where she belonged.
- Sheryl Underwood acknowledged that she was bruised, but not broken. As many of us would have been, she was hurt listening to these women [colleagues] speak badly about her during a conference call she anticipated. However, she didn't allow their negative words and insults concerning her appearance and work define her. She acknowledged that she can heal and come out whole.
- Sheryl Underwood was not vengeful. While speaking to the promoter for the tour, she rejected the opportunity which I'm certain was a sacrifice for her. This was important. How many of us occupy space with people we know mean us harm because we feel we have to? Why share space with people who emit negative energy into our lives and spaces? Spiritually, it is not good. Instead of trying to prove a point to them at that moment, she separated herself. The people we surround ourselves with matters. During the conversation with the promoter, she did not return the favor in speaking negatively about the other comediennes. From what she stated, she didn't tell him about the conference call at all. Instead, she did something greater: she hoped for them great things. Many times we make matters worst by how we choose to react to them. Yes, it's a choice and in our quest for being right, we don't take the high road. We want our grievances to be known right away, we want our enemies to suffer in some way (knowing vengeance belongs to God.) With this type of response, we wear the negativity others place on us to our own detriment. Instead, Sheryl Underwood soared higher. She hoped upon them great things and in return even greater opportunities came to her.
What do you think of Sheryl Underwood's revealed secret? Should she have said anything at all? How do you think the other comediennes should respond? Let me know in the comments.