The news that Tiger Woods has fired his 12-year caddie, Steve Williams, has hit the airways. And it appears Mr. Williams is firing back, recently telling a New Zealand TV station that he plans to write a tell-all book about his relationship with Tiger.
This calls into attention a sad event that happens throughout our lives. How can you best cope with a friend or colleague upsets you?
There are many ways to handle this- some deal with addressing the problem while others address the emotional reaction. In psychology we differentiate between these two approaches to coping:
Problem focused = you take steps to change the situation itself
Emotion focused = changing your emotional reaction to what has happened
When it comes to being fired by someone you trust, problem-focused coping may include:
- Trying to get your job back
- Trying to get a better severance package
- Asking for assistance with getting another job
- Getting another job on your own
Then there are emotion-focused coping approaches, such as:
- Not personalizing the termination
- Move through the stages of mourning, including anger, to get to acceptance
- Forgiving the person who fired you
- Focusing on the positive aspects of the relationship
- Choosing peace in your heart and moving on
What do you think about Steve Williams’ reaction?