I was enjoying a walk the other day when a colourful note made me stop. It was stuck to the fence of a nearby house. In crinkly words it read: Be Greatfull… It was clearly written by a child who wanted to create a nice message in difficult times.
Aside from the lovely reminder, what got me thinking was the way grateful was spelt – greatfull. We’re often encouraged to be grateful for the kind people and fortunate things in our lives, which is a wonderful, important practice. But we’re less encouraged to focus on and remember the ‘great’ things about ourselves, that we are also great full. Full of skills, capacities and great qualities.
If you’re in transition – setting up a business, launching a new product or service, or returning to study, here are four tips to help you embrace your great full self and feel energised.
1. Have a think and make a list
Create your ‘Great’ list, however you want. One idea is to use a few different categories such as Professional Skills/Strengths/Achievements and Compliments. You’ll need to scan your history, but you might be surprised how quickly or thoroughly you fill the page. Once you’re done, you’ve got an excellent list to draw on professionally, and for when you need a boost. If you’re unsure about your strengths, think about what energises you and what people compliment you on. One way to reveal your abilities is to think about what’s easy for you and harder for someone else. For example, in our house, I’m my husband’s spell check and he’s my calculator. Be grateful for the abilities that let you help others.
2. Do get personal
It’s important to know your professional skills, interests and achievements. It’s also important to know your great personal qualities as these often fuel your professional success. For example, are you personable and a great listener? Organised and prompt? Quick to learn and eager to help? If you’re experiencing some self-doubt while learning a skill, adjusting to an environment or trying to win a client, remember who you are as a person – your innate value. Stay close to the people you care for, and to those who care for and believe in you.
3. Create more greatness
Why not top up your greatness! For a confidence boost, add some small daily or weekly challenges that progress your goals a bit further or help develop your knowledge and skills. Celebrate these small wins, lock in the learnings and use the experiences to inspire more small challenges. Also, do you remember how great it feels to make something? Think about what you enjoy outside of work and create something, anything you like. It could be a soup, a scarf, a shelf, a song. Then bask in the satisfaction that follows.
4. Shelve the comparison game
It’s unwinnable and not much fun. Focus on your goals, your strengths, your progress, your service. Even if someone appears to have the perfect life, remember you don’t fully know their daily challenges, the hoops they’ve jumped for success or of course their future challenges. Undeniably, they’re human too. And even if someone has been more fortune than you in some way, there’s no point comparing unfavourably because you’ll just feel deflated. Be your own best friend with how you talk to, encourage and comfort yourself. And remember, the comparison that feels great and propels you forward is looking at the progress you’ve made towards your important goals.
This article was originally published on emmadelahey.com