How to handle betrayal in your career

By Laura Woodworth

The entertainment industry can be a treacherous place to build your career. The stories of betrayal and backstabbing abound. Without describing details, I’ve found that no one is immune to it – even if you’re working among Christians. It’s a tough life and everyone feels like they’ve got to protect their back to “make it” in LA.

You may not be part of that industry, but you’re probably nodding your head and recounting the number of times you’ve been betrayed as well. It happens – even from the best, well-meaning people who naively get caught up in the drive to climb the ladder.

It may have been years ago or just last week when you were wronged, but the sting, the outrage of it burns in your soul. You’re still trying to recover from the consequences. A missed promotion, a bonus that should have come to you but didn’t, someone else taking the credit for your job well done…

So how do you handle betrayal? And how do you get rid of the anger and the injustice of it all?

Before you stop reading and think I’m going to tell you to do the “Christian” thing and just take it – hear me out. For me, managing my emotions when I feel like I’ve been wronged starts with a deep inner search, a time of coming before God and letting him check my heart and my motives. Is any of this my fault? Did I handle something wrongly? Who is the real culprit here?

The prayer King David wrote in the psalms is a good starting point. “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you and lead me along the path of everlasting life.” Psalm 139:24

Then, depending on the situation, I re-read my contracts, re-examine the situation, talk to the boss and plead my case if necessary. There have been times when a contract has been breached and I seek the counsel of my entertainment lawyer.

Sometimes a situation can be resolved and worked towards a fairer outcome. Sometimes, there is really nothing you can do except learn from the situation and yes, move on.

In those instances, you’ve got to have a firm grip on God’s word and his promise to you. Otherwise, betrayal will eat you alive. You’ll rehearse the incident or the conversation again and again and never move past it.

King David knew the sting of injustice. Fiercely loyal to King Saul, he knew what it felt like to be betrayed, as the king literally sought to destroy him out of unfounded jealousy. Almost incredibly, David was able to maintain a purity of heart and great peace even in the midst of horrible injustice.

Can you? Can you find peace in betrayal? It begins with trust in the One who cares for your soul.

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Laura Woodworth is a development executive with Cooke Media Group in Los Angeles and an award winning freelance writer-producer-director. Access her free download “7 Steps to Wise Decisions” and get more resources at LauraWoodworth.com.

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