Tortured Poets Department: Workplace Edition

by | May 15, 2024

Darcy Luoma is one of America’s most highly credentialed coaches. She’s worked in 48 industries, with more than 500 organizations, and has impacted tens of thousands of leaders and employees.


It’s not a big deal, she thought.


Snappy responses that just grazed rudeness,

Targets narrowly missed like darts in dim light.

Conversations slightly off-beat, like a jazz tune missing a note—

not quite harmonious, yet far from discord.


Maybe it will get better, she thought.

It just takes time, she thought.


Yet, beneath her feet, eggshells shattered with every cautious step.

Signals tangled like crossed wires, sparking confusion.

Elephants in the room grew, their shadows looming over each meeting,

Progress crawled—inchworm slow and just as visible.


I should say something, she thought.

It’s time to say something, she thought.

This can’t go on like this, she thought.


She crafted her words like an artisan,

Polishing her tone, sharpening her intent.

But then—


A breakthrough meeting!

A project well-received!

A client satisfied and smiling!


They do good work, she thought.


It’s not that big of a deal, she thought.


So what if tension hums like a live wire in every interaction?

So what if each email sent is a bullet to dodge?

So what if every conversation is a tightrope walk over an abyss of conflict?

So what if every decision feels like a minefield to navigate?


She thought.

She thought.

She thought.


Their work is solid, she reminded herself.

I’ll hold my tongue, she decided.

It’s not a big deal, she thought.


(Repeat indefinitely)


2 minute quiz