Confession: I'm Not Perfect. Not Even Close.
I don't have all the systems in place. I don't have everything figured out. I miss deadlines.
Things fall through the cracks. I'm not exactly where I wanted to be by now - in a lot of areas including "being in shape."
But guess what? I am a shape. For all the things that fall through the cracks, tons more actually gets done. Things may not get done perfect, or with an ideal system in place, but I get them done anyway. I do my best - even though I know I could improve, and do dramatically better.
And I intend to. Improve, that is. Consistently. In fact, I'm always working in that direction. Not that I'll ever reach a state of perfection, or that it's even a goal. I don't even like perfect people. But I do ultimately want to be the best version of ME that I can possibly be.
But I'm not there now. Not today. Probably not tomorrow or next week even. And who knows, maybe I'll never get it all exactly right, but why stop trying?
Every year I become a better person, and my business grows more and reaches more people, and as long as every year is better than the last... why not at least enjoy what IS better, even if it's not "best" - right?
Perspective, Perception & Negative Self-Talk
What's interesting is that if I stop looking at the faults I have right now, and look back at myself a year ago - or five years ago, even ten years ago - I realize (WOW!) just how far I have come. How much I have achieved, and how much I have moved my life in the direction I wanted it to go. That changes my perspective!
It's bad enough that we have to deal with our own (sometimes shortsighted) self perspective, but add in the perceptions of others (which are sometimes not too kind) and it's easy to fall in the habit of viewing ourselves as "less than".
Less than who we want to be, less than what others are...
I make less money than ___.
I am not as young/attractive as ___.
I am not as organized as ___.
I'm not as successful as ___.
I didn't start as early as ___.
I'm not as outgoing as ___.
I have different circumstances than ___ that make it harder for me.
Some of that may be true.
In fact, I can fill in every single one of those blanks!
You may not be in the same position I am, in that you don't have a history of growth and improvement that you're proud of, that improves your perspective. But I'm not in the same position as others who are ahead of me either. It's like a ladder and we're all on it: there will always be people ahead of you and people behind you!
So what? All that matters is you - and your goals.
You are here. So am I. We are exactly where we are. We can't compare ourselves to where we should be, or compare ourselves to others. We can only embrace where we are, decide where we want to go, and move in that direction. Period.
“Man must cease attributing his problems to his environment, and learn again to exercise his will – his personal responsibility.” -Albert Einstein
I'm a true introvert. I used to be painfully shy, to the point of breaking a sweat around people, but fortunately I overcame that - which took work, of course.
I still get nervous when I publish a blog post, go to an event and meet new people, host a webinar, or (ack!) have to speak on stage. Sometimes to the point of being physically sick. But I do it anyway.
I look back at my first year of blog posts and cringe. I'm in my 10th year of blogging now, and it's still not perfect but my writing and formatting has really improved with time and practice.
Perfection Is Not Required!
If you want to make things happen in your life, the first step is to deal with the negative self-talk. Dump the doubt, uncertainty, fear, worry or whatever else holds you back. It isn't reality, it's simply perception.
Make a habit of blocking those negative thoughts (from yourself AND others) until it becomes second nature to ignore the negativity and just DO.
Disappointed in yourself, behind on things, missing goals and deadlines that were important to you, screw something up? So what! Get over it, fix it, figure out a solution, create a new goal or a new deadline - whatever it takes.
One thing I've learned is that the things that worry or stress me the most... don't seem to affect anyone else but me.
And they affect me HARD if I let them.
So I don't.
I simply step back and reevaluate, journal out the worst case scenario, and figure out a solution.
That's a choice I get to make, and it's your choice to make too.
You get to decide how you feel, how you respond or react to things in your environment, how you deal with circumstances, and what you do with your time.
It's your life! And you only get ONE.
“A sign of wisdom and maturity is when you come to terms with the realization that your decisions cause your rewards and consequences. You are responsible for your life, and your ultimate success depends on the choices you make." -Denis Waitley
My advice: Put yourself out there! Whatever you're doing, you'll improve with experience. You'll never be great until you get your hands dirty and figure things out as you go. So go! Forget what everyone else is doing, how well they're doing, how smart or organized or fast they are - and just BE YOU 100%.
I encourage you to be ambitious. To do something outrageous. Do something that shocks yourself, even. With all your imperfections, quirks, shortcomings, and circumstances even. Because hey, I have them too! You're not alone. The only difference between you and someone that is "better than you" (in your mind) is that they pushed past those perceived barriers. Because we ALL have them.
It's time to make serious change in your life. Whatever it is you REALLY want to do... put it in motion, starting today. Regret sucks. Taking no action just means you'll continue to feel disappointed or "less than". Taking even the wrong action will get the wheels turning and get you moving in the right direction, even if it's by trial and error.
Decide today to make your life what it is meant to be.
You'll be so glad you did!