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Hello lovely and welcome to Day 5 of Searching for Serenity's 7-day video tutorial series, The Crash Course to Boosting your Confidence at Work.
We are three quarters of the way through the week already. I can't believe that we are here already and I really do hope that each of the steps that we are taking day on day are helping you to see just how amazing you are, just how much of a difference you are making in your career and where you can go from here.
I did term this as your annual review without the sweaty palms and, hopefully you are still sweaty palm free (let me know if not!). What we are looking at today is bringing together a lot of the elements we have already looked at, to consider where you are now and where you are going to be in the future.
So over the last few days I have asked you to check your job description and update your cv, not only with everything you do in your so-called work capacity but with everything that you bring to the table; every time you support other people, every time you make cakes and biscuits for the other people at work because they are having a difficult time, whatever it is that you bring, that has to be on the list because it is everything that you personally bring to the table and the added benefit that you bring to others.
Yesterday we looked at a journal, box, whatever you want to keep it in, but a journal of awesome. Every piece of feedback, every time someone says thank you, every card, every note, even handwritten notes of what has been said to you, well done, good job thank you very much. That journal is there to remind you that whilst you focus on the negative, the positives are there and you just need to focus on them a little bit harder and that every negative that you have had has probably transformed into a positive at some point; you have learnt and grown from it, you have developed and improved form it or that negative client became a positive at the end.
Today we want to draw those together for a more introspective exercise.
Consider where you were 12 months ago; not just where you were working but how you felt. Grab a notepad for this and start jotting down your ideas. Where were you working, what were you doing, how did you feel?
What did you really want to achieve? If I had spoken to you a year ago, how would you have described your career and your life? Where did you think you would be in 12 months' time?
Once you have noted those down, where was I, how was I feeling, where did I think I was going, take a moment to sit back and reflect. How are you now, what has changed, are you where you thought you would be or has life thrown you a curveball, as it often does.
I also want you to consider what difficulties you have faced in the last 12 months. What things came up that came out of left field. What difficulties did you anticipate but that were far better or worse than you thought?
What positive things happened, were there things that were completely unexpected - did you win a holiday or did you other half propose? List all the things that have happened to you over your last 12 months and think of it as your road map.
For me, I can think of certain things that happened over the last few years that really did throw me for a loop.
Tell me how much of this is familiar; when those things happened to me, I focused on how I couldn't control the things that threw me for a loop. I felt as though I had let everyone down (for these quirks of fate over which I had no control). I felt that I should have done better.
Just speaking with you now I can relive the emotion of how down I felt and how difficult it was to pull myself back out of this.
You might wonder why I am asking you to focus on the negatives in particular. Check your list; how many of those negatives did you create versus how many happened. Shit happens, life happens. How many of those toad markers are you blaming yourself for, holding some resentment for or thinking you should have dealt with better.
Then, consider, if it were someone else, a friend or a colleague coming to you saying that they weren't where they thought they would be now, or that something came up that they thought they could have done better.
What would you say to that person?
This is a tricky exercise because it's really easy to shy away from. It's easy to listen to this video and think that you will come back to this when you are feeling less tired/stronger/later.
I want you to take this exercise very seriously because we spend our lives living day-to-day, moment-to-moment and very rarely look back at where we have come. We spend so long looking at a horizon that never seems to come any closer, not realising we have crossed two continents already.
This exercise is designed for you to firstly consider how far you have come but also for you to realise the strength that you have developed.
It might be that, in the last 12 months, absolutely nothing bad has happened to you. I would be surprised if there weren't a couple of moments on the list though because I know, like me, you drawn to focus on the negatives rather than the positives and tend to be hard on yourself and think you should always do better. I want you to recognise today how many of the things on your list you had control over, and how many of them you dealt with and you probably dealt with them very well. It might have taken some time but you did because you are still here now and you're not just here, you're trying to be even better than you were before.
That deserves some recognition.
So, this is the goal setting part of our appraisal - where we have been, where we are going, what's happened in between, what positives have come out of our experiences, realising that not everything is within our control and remembering that, to have come as far as you have already has taken immense courage, amazing skills and that there really is nothing that you can't achieve.
Let me know how you get on with today. Please do take the time to sit down and review this one properly.
You might be surprised at what it throws up.
I would love to hear what has come up for you or how you have dealt with it. I hope that you realise, on reflection, you have done an amazing job so far and that you are stronger than you know. I hope this exercise brings home just how strong and flexible you are.
If you need to reach out to me you can get hold of me at firstname.lastname@example.org or reach out to me in the Facebook group, I will be there to support you.
In the meantime, have an amazing day today and I will be back in your inbox for day 6 of the course tomorrow.