Your Best is Good Enough: Why Sometimes You Need to Go Easy on Yourself
For those of us who are driven, hardworking, motivated, type A people, going easy on ourselves can be a challenge. I always feel like I haven't done enough. I always feel like I am behind the curve, and that I should have done better. It doesn’t matter that our company grew by almost 20% last year even when our CEO was out with an injury for nearly three months. It doesn’t matter that I had some amazing trips. It doesn’t matter that I grew as a person and became more disciplined than I ever thought I could be. I SHOULD have made us grow 30%....and on and on and on.
There is something inside of me that makes me always want to be better, and drives me to succeed, never give up, and try, and grow, and learn every single day. This is a good thing. It gives me purpose. It helps me wake up in the morning. It makes me good at what I do. But there are two sides to every coin, and the dark side of that coin is fear and insecurity. Right around New Years every year, I start looking at everything I didn’t do, or “should” have done. This isn’t fair to myself, because just like everyone else I am not perfect. (That can be a relief to know!)
Sometimes it is important for each of us to take a deep breath, celebrate our accomplishments, and enjoy what we HAVE done. We need to be kind to ourselves, and understand how hard we are working, and how much we ARE doing. It can be hard to slow down and take that breath though, because there is always something that NEEDS to be done right now. There is always something that isn’t finished. There is always something that didn’t get accomplished, but there are always many things that we didn’t plan on accomplishing that we did. Even failures are important to celebrate, because each failure gets us closer to our next success. Failures or mistakes are life’s way of explaining things we need to know more about.
Going easy on myself is hard. I expect a lot from myself. But I would much rather be chasing successes than lamenting failures. I need to remember that just like I want to help others, sometimes I need some help too. Just like other people need to be trusted to learn from their mistakes, and don’t need to be beaten up emotionally over them, I need to trust myself to do the same, and be kind to myself when I do mess up. If I don’t trip…I’m not going anywhere!
If I am not willing to give myself a pat on the back now and then, how can I ever be happy with what I have? Self-satisfaction and being grateful gives me energy and peace, which restores me. Having a plan and working the plan is great to keep moving towards our goals. I find being open to surprises, veering a little off track to explore possibilities, and putting curiosity and fun into all that I do, improves the quality of my days! My guess is that many of you have experienced this as well.
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“The key to success is doing it, every day, no matter what, one day at a time.
What did you do today?”
- Jeremy Larsen
Business Development and Operations Manager
Coherence Associates Inc.