A friend gave me a really intriguing book entitled Soul Catcher some months back. I shelved the book for a bit because I felt like answering the life questions was too much work, and that I did not have enough time to answer them. Strangely, though, recent events and my 6-month hiatus necessitated additional self-discovery so I decided to fill out the questions with some aim of catching my soul, wherever it decided to malinger and abandon me. Last Saturday, I managed to fill out 42 pages that ranged from historical pains to anger management issues. It was enlightening for a weekend exercise, an alternative to people who do not have time for a weekend off or mountain retreat. Anybody who wants to get to know themselves better should get some benefit in using a journal like this.
My most recent life issue involves that of hijackers. One would think that only airplanes have hijackers in them. In reality though, you will find that there will be so many opportunities for hijackers. These people steal even the things that you legitimately have. Some do it subtly, and some people do it in broad daylight. They can steal your project, your idea, your dignity as a human being… And the painful part is that there is no penalty for people who steal these intangible things from you. In some circles, they are even REWARDED for being thieves.
The action of forcefully taking an object, and using it for own purpose.
I took that from Urban Dictionary, which is not exactly the most reliable semantic source for grammar nazis, but for this post’s purpose, I think this description is OK.
Usually the most tempting response for hijackers is to smack them in the head and give them a good beating. However, civil society will reprimand you if you do this. You will even get a criminal case for physical injury. Some snide insult or sarcastic remark may also serve as alternative, but that will leave a bad taste in your mouth and give the thieves of your life a reason to label you as an uncooperative twat that needs to be squished. And this will allow them to advance their shady cause much further and to your detriment.
So what exactly do you do when someone is hijacking you unfairly?
Honestly, I don’t know all the answers and I am not sure if my approach is the best solution for such a situation. I write about it because it’s something that I have personally experienced in many aspects of life. I only know of three strategies, so far.
Strategy 1: Accept and Endure. Also known as the martyr’s path, this involves giving way. And watching your own ideas and projects go down the drain because of these hijackers who come barging in and steal everything that you have worked for. Sometimes you just have to let it slide, a manner of choosing your battles. But then, if the thing that was stolen was huge, blatantly wrong, and affects many innocent people, there’s a second strategy to take…
Strategy 2: Take a Stand. In a way, this is what I did for my recent situation. It was a semi-accepting and semi-resisting stance. Other people were not happy with what I did, but I did not regret it because I knew that given the situation, I had given it my very best. You know that it’s right when you can sleep soundly at night knowing that you did not make it easy for them to steal things in a jiffy (like put up a good fight and all that shit…)
Strategy 3: Pack your bags and change direction — When things get so impossible and intolerable, and when you have fought with both tooth and nail to protect yourself from hijackers, sometimes you just have to accept the lost cause, throw in the towel, and change direction towards a place where you can be encouraged to do the right thing and be protected. It’s a hard decision to make because you will never be sure if there are no hijackers in the next bend when you change direction. But some people think that this risk is worth taking as opposed to just sticking to the status quo and being miserable on a daily basis.
Strangely though, there are hidden gifts that come from such a situation. It’s somehow a blessing in disguise to solve a problem like this.
What are the good things that came out of it? For one, I did realize that I actually have some life principles and that I am willing to risk things to fight for these things if the situation calls for it. Another thing was that it made me firm enough to make certain life decisions. I gained the strength that I never knew I had if things did not happen in this manner. This event allowed me to be more true to myself. I had a firmer grasp of what I want and what I value as a person. It made me much braver to make a decision that I never knew I had the strength to make.
And there’s one more thing. I realized that it’s necessary to forgive the hijacker/s for lifelong peace of mind. This is quite difficult if you are still heavily involved in the situation. Note that you do not forgive the hijacker for their benefit. You forgive them so that you will not have additional baggage to carry in your life.
Also, when people tend to punish you instead of thank you for your efforts of shielding yourself from hijacking attempts (because hijackers are often acting in the guise of charity and promote themselves using smoke and mirror tricks to impress the big people of this planet), you just have to accept this. Just because you see through the schemes of these hijackers does not mean that other people can also see what they are doing. You’d be surprised; you might even get a lot of flak for pointing it out and warning people. People generally hate being warned.
So, what works? Aside from the three possible strategies I mentioned, some space, lots of water, lots of sleep, and a firm decision often makes for a well-recovered person.
Are you hurting and hijacked, too? Welcome to the club. Take comfort in the fact that you are not alone. Try to get yourself together and later, the Universe will smile back at you in the next bend for bouncing back as well as you can. 🙂