Have you ever applied for a job that you really wanted … only to be crushed and disappointed when you didn’t get it?

Me too. Dozens of time. I felt frustrated when I didn’t get what I wanted. I’ve been fired and laid off, too. It’s painful. It hurt my feelings, frustrated my ambitions, and crushed my dreams – or so I thought at the time.

I recall years ago, when I didn’t get a job I wanted at a television network in Los Angeles. I thought I was perfect for the position and was so disappointed when they gave the job to someone else. I pouted for weeks.

A year later, that job – and the entire department – were eliminated.

A few years after that experience, I applied for a higher level position at the university where I was working. The dean gave the job to someone else – someone who wasn’t as qualified as I thought I was.

Six months after that, that position was eliminated.

About twenty years ago, a well-respected newspaper executive encouraged me to apply for a job in Chicago. Alas, I didn’t get the job and was so disappointed, as I would have loved the opportunity to work with that executive.

But in less than a year, he left Chicago to move to Maine to head up another media company, and not long after that, the Chicago newspaper was sold.

Some years ago, the newspaper I worked for offered me a buyout package as part of their efforts to gradually downsize the company. I was hurt that they didn’t value me enough to want to keep me. In fact, I was so hurt and so angry that I wrote a book about my experience: “A Peacock in the Land of Penguins.”

Twenty years later, the book I wrote has sold over 400,000 copies and is now published in 23 languages worldwide … while my former newspaper employer has gone bankrupt.

The Taoist philosophy teaches that we never really know whether something is bad or good. A blessing can turn out to be a curse … and misfortune often turns out to be a blessing. We don’t really know for sure until time has passed and we have the advantage of hindsight.

BJ's new book (with Sam Beasley) is "Your Life Is Your Prayer"
BJ’s new book (with Sam Beasley) is “Your Life Is Your Prayer”
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