This image illustrates the fallacy that hard work leads to recognition and advancement. That accessories will make you feel important. That salary equals fulfillment.
These are merely coverings we lay over our desire to be valued when we don’t believe in ourselves.
At a certain level everyone is working hard, earns a reasonable wage and has a nice pen or handbag.
Hard work can turn into the treadmill to nowhere if it is your only career strategy or your escape from things that are not working.
Negotiating for salary without a tool belt of signature strengths, how you’ve applied them, your measurable key accomplishments, your value proposition in a new role and a timeline for delivery is far less effective.
And the stuff you buy is a great way to treat yourself as long as it isn’t how you make yourself feel good when you doubt yourself.
Everything on the bottom of this image comes from an internal sense of self-worth.
I see this in my clients. Society tells...
When a team feels they have psychological safety at work they’re not experiencing cynicism, personal agendas, bureaucracy and posturing. It’s up to us as leaders to provide that.
By working on ourselves. The answer is not in a book or a training or a conference. It’s inside of you.
When we can go into the dark corners of our lives and root out what holds us back - what makes us insecure, we stop doing and tolerating these culture killing and self-defeating behaviors.
When we can stand our self-doubt up against our courage we make space for the truth - that we are all human and better when we support each other.
When we can accept that we’re not perfect especially in the face of regret, we soften to ourselves and then to others.
Nothing is permanent. We’re all a work in progress.
The human condition is happy when it feels safe and accepted. You deserve to be safe. You deserve the promotion or new job. You deserve...
Yesterday I got a call from my second oldest daughter who had just had an intimidating experience. As I was helping her stay in the moment and not relive the fear or project a repeat occurrence I remembered the wisdom in the book The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz.
The book offers a code of conduct based on ancient Toltec wisdom that advocates freedom from self-limiting beliefs that may cause suffering and limitation in a person's life.
The Four Agreements are:
Always do your best.
Be impeccable with your word.
Don’t take anything personally.
Don’t make assumptions.
The first two are character based. Good people have less trouble with them. The last two are self-esteem based. Everyone has trouble with them.
Fear can be debilitating. It’s worse when we make assumptions about it. At work it usually shows up around what people say, do, what you assume is behind their behavior and what you assume they mean. You think it’s about you personally but usually...
If you work anywhere you likely have had a colleague try to make you look bad. Most of my clients have had to struggle with this. It is disempowering and injects a fear of losing your job which ultimately leads to a fear of losing people who you love. This is where executive presence is crucial. This is where you don’t react at all. This is where you just pause, stare at them for a count of five and then ask, “Are you trying to make me look bad?” That will stop them dead.
Call them out with curiosity for exactly what they are doing. Don’t characterize them, get angry or defensive. Simply ask them if what it looks like they are doing is in fact what they are doing. If they deflect back to you say, “Ok, I wanted to get clarity on that because for a minute it felt like you were trying to make me look bad.” No one can argue with how you feel.
This scenario gives you a few moments to recenter yourself, for people on the periphery to validate in their...