During stressful times, one of the things that sees us through is self-confidence - confidence in our ability to do whatever it takes to weather a storm; trust in ourselves enough to know that we'll take the necessary actions that will honor our self-care; and courage to do the tough stuff even when everything inside us wants to run and hide.
A while ago, I wrote about watching a series on "The Big Idea with Donny Deutsch" called "American Dream" where Donny interviewed successful people who had experienced both significant success and failure. One gentleman, a businessman who made billions only to lose it all before creating success again, had a great idea that's worth repeating, especially during this period of change and uncertainty. He explained that the thing that got him through his toughest times was an "accomplishments list" he kept with him in his briefcase at all times. He explained, "Most of us spend a great deal of time thinking about how we've failed or what we don't have and not enough time on what we've done right or on the success we've created. I use this list to remind myself of what I've done well - especially during the difficult times."
As I listened to him talk about this idea, I thought about how valuable a tool this would be for anyone who needed a boost of confidence or a reminder of his or her potential. Think about it. When's the last time you sat down and looked at your life through the lens of success? If I asked you to list ten accomplishments right this minute, could you? If that question draws a blank, then I invite you to make your own list this week. Here are some examples of the kinds of accomplishments you might include:
- I raised healthy and good kids
- I enjoy a successful marriage
- I completed my college degree
- I landed a job in a field that I love
- I created my first garden
- I learned to speak Spanish
- I started my own business
- I wrote a book, a poem, or a song
- I bought my first car or home
- I made a difference in someone's life
Get the idea? Okay, let's stop for a moment and have you do something good for yourself. Open a new file on your computer right now and take a few minutes to do your own list. Challenge yourself to come up with at least 15 examples, large or small. Think of this exercise as securing a great insurance policy that may just pull you out of an emotional fire when you need it most - and it may also help you to make a wise decision to stay on board when you're tempted to jump ship.
Once you've made your list, print it out and keep it somewhere handy. Read through it at least once a day this week and smile as you do. In spite of what challenge, failure, disappointment, or hardship you may be facing right now, deep inside is a smart, wise, committed, and hard-working soul who has a track record of success. Yup - that's you!
Take Action Challenge
Have you started your list yet? ?