Fiona Blayney says that it’s time to silence your harsh inner critic and focus on the positive.
I thought of you today. It’s not often that I do, but today I thought of you. I wanted to give you an enormous smile, a big hug, and say you’ve done an amazing job and I hope you’re proud. I wanted to show you the road you’ve taken, make you remember the things you’ve learnt, the setbacks you’ve had and the determination you’ve maintained to keep going.
I wanted to invite everyone you’ve ever touched into your day, showcasing that the contribution you made into their world has had an impact on their life in more ways than you can imagine. Perhaps just for a moment, perhaps forever. At times you are such a critic, perhaps your harshest, and we both know that at times your critics have been pretty harsh. I know you think of what you haven’t achieved rather than what you have, and today my wish for you was that you could see how untrue these thoughts really are. I wanted you to see those moments when you felt a fraud, when you doubted yourself, when you had a hundred balls in the air and were working tirelessly to keep them there. I wanted to say, ‘See what you’ve done? You’ve done all of this; be proud and stop punishing yourself for what you are yet to achieve!’
It’s been many years since you left the school gates, destination unknown. You’ve had more learning since then, and there’s much more to be learned along the way. Sure, there will always be someone with more money than you, more assets and more possessions. There will be someone smarter, more driven and perhaps even with more energy. But guess what? There will never be another you.
Today, I watched you on- board another team member. You recounted the journey of your career and the timeline to establishing the business that you now direct. It was as you stood back to view the whiteboard scrawl of the world that is you that I saw you catch a glimpse of what you’ve created, and I wanted to jump up and down as you smiled. I knew you were proud.
You turned to look at your new starter, and you saw a face beaming with pride. I knew you could see this person had made the choice to come on the ride with you; they had bought into your dream and I could see the humility fill your heart.
You should think of you today. When was the last time you thought of you? We spend countless hours in workshops, undergoing training, reading books, considering ‘our goals’, setting career milestones, scoping out what we want our life to look like, and ultimately setting our plan of attack to achieve. Like you, I do this too.
In the midst of the goal- setting, budgeting and planning, in the midst of reflection on what you did and didn’t achieve last year, do yourself a favour. Stop and ‘think of you today’ and how you will right this atrocity in 2015.
Take a moment to congratulate yourself on everything you’ve done to be the person you are today: the knowledge you’ve gained, the people you’ve surrounded yourself with and the home you’ve created, to name just a few. We are all often our greatest critics, always striving for more and thinking ‘What’s next?’ We forget to take a moment to congratulate ourselves for who we are, what we contribute and the life we’ve created.
Of course you can always list more, sell more, lease more, manage more, employ more, service more: in essence you can always achieve more. Perhaps we all can; but does it appease that person staring back at you in the mirror?
I thought of myself today and for a moment I saw a person I am proud of. In that moment I thought, everything from here is all a bonus.