It’s surprising how many of us fear that we are inadequate, assuming the best way to approach our work is “any way but mine.”
We love to sell ourselves short. This collective practice has emerged in reaction to external cues – specifically, how we are and aren’t supposed to be, think or act. We internalize these directives and judge ourselves in relation to standards that have little to do with who we are.
An example? I was recently told by an entrepreneurial client “I’m not motivated by money. That’s bad, right?”
Or, a client who wants to work with juvenile offenders saying, “It’s weird that I like the discipline angle when everyone else likes the ‘fun’ aspects of working with kids.”
Actually, the world needs you. It needs all of us. If it didn’t, we wouldn’t be here. And if our gifts and inclinations were not diverse in nature, our world would be sharply out of balance.
Let’s stop trying to measure up to others’ expectations. We aren’t doing anyone a favor by criticizing our innate talents, motivators or values.
Let’s move away from notions of good or bad, right or wrong. We are all blessed with different motivations, strengths, and tendencies. It is our job to identify those qualities and then work to maximize and/or manage them in order to actualize our goals.
We are the standard by which to measure our success. Barometers of that success include our happiness, personal and professional satisfaction, and our ability to live within our values on a daily basis.
We are each a square in a patchwork universe, whose beauty embodies the sum of its parts. We are each responsible for the piece of the world that draws us in most strongly, for if we do not take care of it, someone who does not love it will take over.
We provide contrast by our very nature, shining light on each other’s beauty through our inherent differences. By valuing our unique roles in this world, we honor the whole.