Can you remember some of the compliments you’ve been given lately? Now, how about the times you’ve been criticised? Can you remember those?
If you’re anything like me (and apparently a fifth of the female population²), you brush over the praise but dwell on any ‘constructive criticism’. I can still bring to mind ‘feedback’ I was given in annual appraisals at work about how I could be “more assertive”, “more challenging” and “louder”. In short, not me. I spent way too long focusing on how I could do better without stopping to question it.
But I see it more clearly now.
You have two options. One, you can focus on improving your ‘flaws’ – those ways you or someone else has decided you could be better. Or, two, you can focus on fulfilling your beautiful potential – your inner sparkle as I like to call it.
Option one asks you to try to mould yourself into something you’re not. Option two asks you to be you in all your brilliance.
I look back now at that annual ‘feedback’ I was given and, with the benefit of hindsight, wonder why I didn’t just embrace my limitations rather than allow it to distract me. I’m not saying I would have given up trying – I always want to be learning and I took huge pride in doing the best job I could – BUT I wonder why I didn’t fight my own corner and find ways I could break the mould and shine in my own way. Maybe because I wasn’t challenging enough, hey!
It makes me all the more passionate about getting women to recognise their potential. It’s not about living up to someone else’s rules, it’s about creating your own.
What does being the very best version of you look like? How can you be more ‘you’?
My challenge this week is to follow your inner north star. How can you shake off some of the things you feel you should be or do, and be more of you instead. I’d love for you to share with me how you get on.