I am humbled on a regular basis as a mediator. One occasion is when someone acts on the power to let go. Not an easy thing to do.
In a recent mediation over alleged pregnancy discrimination, the employer’s lawyer had his job cut out for him. He’d have to overcome inappropriate comments in response to the plaintiff’s report of her pregnancy, soon followed by a suspiciously reasoned termination, among other challenges.
One would expect the plaintiff, suddenly without income, effectively unemployable as she was visibly into her pregnancy, for reasons that were shocking to her, would hold a stalwart position at the negotiation table.
Instead, I saw her mind take over. I saw the paradigm shift in her as she came to a conscientious and graceful decision to let go. She reached a satisfactory outcome with her well-being very much restored.
It reminded me of a story…
A means of catching a monkey was placing a succulent nut inside a hanging wooden box with a hole just large enough to fit a monkey’s out-stretched hand. Once the monkey formed a fist around the nut inside, though, it was unable to pull its hand back through the hole. There the monkey would stay struggling and stuck because it didn’t realize the key to its freedom was to let go.