In the game Ultima IV, you play a character whose mission it is to become pure in virtue by only doing good things. It’s a rather sharp contrast to modern games, right? But anyway, knowing about these virtues makes for some positive change in your real life.
Some of these virtues are stronger in me than others. Honesty, Humility, Sacrifice are some of the stronger ones. In a real-life Ultima, I would probably end up being one of the wimpier character classes, like Shepherd. But, good virtues are good to have. I say this because I recently made a mistake. A big, big mistake at work.
I do a lot of my work on intuition, doing what I think is best and usually that works out pretty well for me. So when I was told to reactivate some application functionality that we had taken out previously, I immediately knew what needed done and where to go to make the change. The problem was, I didn’t read the details.
My change had been in use for almost a month and when Accounting went to do their billing, everything was rejected. And it was because of my change. I didn’t notice the instruction to leave the records open after processing. That was different than the way it used to be. And because of that, the company had lost a month’s worth of billing.
It’s not often that a person can say that they cost their employer a million dollars in revenue, but at that moment, I was in that exclusive crowd. When asked about the change, I owned up to the mistake and fixed it immediately. And then I started thinking about what I did, which is never a good thing.
I did the math and calculated the damage. What could I ever do to fix it? I can’t take a pay cut to zero dollars and work the next 15 years for free. Even if they fired me, that money can’t be recovered by my elimination. And there wasn’t anything I could do about it, that corrective work is in a totally different department working on a whole other level. All I could do was wait and see what would happen to me.
And as I thought about it that night, I wasn’t scared. I knew I could get another job easily enough. I was just sad. I just cost the whole company a substantial amount of money. Bonuses for everyone? Forget it. Pay raises? Nope. New equipment? Not this year. They could fire me, but the impact of my mistake would hit everyone. And for that I was sad.
The next day I went in to my boss’s office and I asked what was going to happen. He looked puzzled and then remembered our discussion where he explained that I missed a detail in my task. “Oh, that’s taken care of.” The honesty I gave him for my mistake, he gave the same honesty to the client that was rejecting the billing of all of our “closed” records and they agreed to work with us to reopen them and bill them properly.
So I was never really in any serious trouble. The fear was just something I invented in my head. But that mental invention, taking ownership of and feeling the impact of your actions on others, is a reminder of one of the principles of Reiki: I will do my work with honesty.
And, like many of my other instances of fortune, I am grateful for what I have been afforded in life. Never forget to be grateful.