It can be hard to face ourselves. Our best and worst qualities are all there right before us, we simply have to choose to see and believe them. We of course can list rather quickly the things we do poorly, our bad habits, our flaws and even remind ourselves of our mistakes. The worst we know about ourselves seems to always be top of mind. Why is it so hard to recognize the things we do best, the good stuff, the places where we excel and shine?
I liked these words from Nietzsche, they help us understand that we need to be frank with ourselves, not just with others! And that can be tough – totally tough! Somehow we discount the great things we do, especially if we are under pressure or having a bad day. And yet we focus with complete clarity on our bad habits, never giving ourselves room to grow. Never giving ourselves credit for the lessons we have learned and applied to make our life better.
So how would your day, month, week or year look if you were frank with yourself about what you are doing well and what you need to improve? Instead of harping on the worst in yourself, what if you started by making a list of the things you do that make you feel energized? Effective, proud and the things you want to share by screaming, “Look at me, look at what I did!” This list can serve to provide perspective and insights as these successes get forgotten along the journey. You can look back at this list when days get frustrating and nothing seems to go right. Let it provide the information you need to pick yourself up knowing that it is not all bad.
And that second list is the items you want to improve. Not your flaws, your areas for improvement. What habit do you want to break? What emotion do you want to manage better? And what skill, tool, thing do you want to learn to move what you want forward? Having this list reminds us that we are a work in progress, human and we make mistakes. It keeps us humble and reminds us that life is a journey not a destination, so give it a break and take a deep breath. No one is perfect – no matter what your Mother tells you – we all have room for improvement.
Take time today to be frank with yourself. Look at the best and worst you bring to the table. Leverage the best and learn to tone down your worst. In the end of our days, people remember the good stuff more than our bad habits…it’s a great insight we need to do for ourselves more often.
Thanks for the reminder! 😀