When it comes to personal development, it’s so easy to focus on lack. I think, instead, we should focus on achievement!
So often our thoughts go to –
- On what do I need to work?
- How can I improve?
- Why didn’t that work?
- What could I have done differently?
- How do I need to change?
It’s easy to become trapped in this loop of “needing to do” or “needing to be” more before stopping to appreciate how far we’ve come. Does this sound familiar? You’re not alone. I’ve struggled with this lack of self-appreciation and acceptance myself.
In mentoring new VAs, I’ve witnessed these feelings of uncertainty and the concern over perception. When I first
became a full-time VA, I struggled with these feelings too. I was intimidated. I stumbled. I was scared, actually, terrified. But, as they say, “If it doesn’t scare you, it doesn’t change you.”
The biggest thing I credit for overcoming my fears is faith. I relied upon the fact that I had a solid educational foundation. I relied upon the direction of my coach. I built on my experience in administrative work at my previous, corporate job. I prayed. A lot. Over time, my prayers overcame the butterfly-filled-upset-stomach. We replaced my uncertainty with a calm awareness. Peace.
A steadfast confidence grew from simply doing what I love to do. I love my work. In accepting myself – my strengths, my weaknesses, my uniqueness and my truth – I broke past the barrier of trying to “prove” myself. I let others see me for who I truly am, and then let them decide. I owned who I am, even if only a little at first, but that compounds daily. I’ve accepted my gifts, the talent and experience I have, and the things I have learned. If I am unable to offer something that someone needs, I’m happy to help them find it elsewhere.
I love my story, and I am honored to share it with others. My dearest wish is that you embrace your story too. I hope you can own who you are and share it with the rest of the world. Part of this self-discovery is looking back and acknowledging just how far you’ve come. Motivation often stems from celebrating personal development and growth, which then fuels your future endeavors.
Personally, I feel a lot of joy and thankfulness in taking the time to appreciate hard work and achievement. If you’re struggling with feelings of doubt, lack of self-worth and discouragement, it’s time to take a moment out of your day and focus on how far you’ve come. If you’re not sure where to start, consider the following tips:
It’s hard to think about anything when a thousand worries are bouncing around in your head. Even if it’s just a few minutes, sit down and enjoy a little quiet time to reflect.
Ask yourself some questions
Ask yourself where you were this time last year. How about five years ago? Ten? As you go over these answers, rest in the realization that change is a slow and ever-evolving process.
If you keep a journal (or, for me, a blog), reread some of your older entries. Reflecting on what you were going through during that time, the feelings you had, the entertained hopes and the overcome obstacles, are all written evidence of how far you’ve come.
Make a list of your accomplishments
Even if the accomplishment seems small or insignificant, include it on your list. In the future, this list can provide encouragement; it will serve as a reminder of how far you’ve come, and what you’re now striving to achieve.
Seek loving encouragement
Unfortunately, the majority of us are our worst critics. I’ve been guilty of it. Sometimes, hearing a clearer view from a loved one (friends, family, trusted mentor, etc.) is what we need; they can remind you of how much you’ve grown.
Celebrate the little things in life
Every small achievement, every step forward towards your goals should be recognized and celebrated. It’s critical to take a moment to be happy and rejoice in the little things in life.
Realize some work will never finish
We all yearn for that feeling of reaching the top of the mountain or closing the book after reading the last chapter. In reality, life’s journey is never over. It’s a constant work in progress.
I firmly believe it is so important to find what you love to do, enjoy it, own it and celebrate it. That is my intent in writing this. I fervently hope that you do so as well.
On September 24, I was honored to receive the AssistU Virtual Assistant of the Year award.
It was really special, too, because my Virtual Assistant, Pat Denzer and my parents were there with me when I received the award. Pat really helps my business run smoothly so I can focus on my clients… she supports me so lovingly and I am so grateful. My parents, who are also entrepreneurial, have been so very influential in my development as a business owner, not to mention being a firm foundation in who I am as a woman, in business and out.
I am beyond grateful and blessed for each and every opportunity that presents itself. In taking a moment to celebrate personal development and growth, I’d like to thank all of those who have played a part in my own journey. I appreciate each of you for your help in reaching the point I am at today. God bless!