With Thanksgiving coming up, I wanted to write about something to be grateful for even if you are in the middle of a divorce or custody battle. In the past I have told you how you should be thankful for the problems that life gives you to solve, what to be thankful for, and the things you can learn from a divorce. Today I write about being thankful for your enemies.
Life is a story with yourself as the protagonist. And we meet different characters who are allies or enemies. It is easy to be grateful for our friends and mentors.
Surprisingly, I also have a great deal to be thankful for from my enemies. The worst boss I ever had as a lawyer was sadistic. It wasn’t a good day for him unless he brought a little rain into someone’s life. He drove me and his other lawyers to work 80 hours a week. But there was no pleasing him. Once I asked him what priority to give to two tasks he assigned me. He said, “The first is priority 1, and the second is priority A.”
And yet I learned a great deal from him. I learned how to write a business letter and a contract. I learned how to make a business presentation. I learned how to confront and attack my work. I learned how to deal with adversity, stand up to bullies, and stay calm in a legal fight.
I didn’t realize it at the time, but looking back on it now, it occurs to me that you can learn as much or more from your enemies as you can from your friends.