As a parent to two little ones, I’m acutely aware of the stories, beliefs and values we’re communicating, through our conversations, our behaviours, our choices and the way we live our lives. Every. Single. Day.
It’s the small things – the tiny criticisms, or seemingly inconsequential comments that land the heaviest - and as a parent, it can be excruciatingly difficult to tread that fine line between nurturing what can be positive traits and tempering them.
So many of the people I work with are labouring under beliefs instilled in them either as a child or at some point earlier in their lives…
Usually these no longer serve them well and in fact, most of the time, they are so detrimental that it would be much more useful to let them go.
Below I’ve noted a few of my own long-held beliefs that I realised were no longer serving me well…
“I’m not very good at writing”
This was one I told myself for years…
The only B grade I got – among a raft of A grades in my GCSEs – was for English language…the subject which is all about communicating through the written word.
For years, I laboured under the impression that this wasn’t a strong point of mine, and look at me now: I essentially make a living through communicating with the written word.
“It’s not the winning that counts, it’s the taking part”
And yes, I have heard myself saying this to Mali more than a few times :O
I was – and still am – extremely competitive. I wouldn’t play a game unless I knew I could win and when I did play, I’d always cheat!!!
But when it comes to life, I want to win. I don’t just want to take part in life, I want to win at life – and winning to me, means living the life I choose.
If I settled for participating, I’d have stayed in a world I didn’t love, doing a job that didn’t really matter and living a life I fell into rather than grabbing by the throat with two hands and never letting go.
And on the cheating…you can’t really cheat in life, but you can play smart, use hacks and get creative about how you do things – that’s my version of cheating these days, and I think it’s smart, rather than silly.
Who says everything has to be done the hard, long, ‘right’ way all the time?
“You’re so uncompromising”
Yes, yes I am. And it’s what enables me to stand up for my values and beliefs time and time again, and to run my business the way I want to run it. I have boundaries, and I’m not afraid to stick to them.
I have strongly held beliefs and core values – we all do – and yet many of us are taught that we need to be more flexible, more accommodating and more compromising.
You know what that leads to? Wanting to please. Weak boundaries in business. Being taken advantage of by clients. Selling yourself short. Undervaluing yourself and what you have to offer in the world.
I’ll take uncompromising and run with it, thanks.
These are some of my stories – ones I’ve long since let go of.