I have a few monsters under my bed, and as per my conversations with many female professionals, I’m far from being the only one, in spite of the “I’m a woman, and I fear nothing.” almost binding trend.
I’ve always worked with dedication and passion. For years. I did despite all the hardship, the war I’ve lived painfully through, the health setbacks, and the criticism. I haven’t given up and have worked my way to..well, the next thing. Even if I have always focused on the destination as much as I did the journey, I have learned to recognize and acknowledge that I do have some fears and that I might not have faced them all.
So, since flashing the light under the bed is usually a good way to get rid of monsters, this is exactly what I’m going to do.
First monster: Mediocrity
It is scary. Fear of being mediocre haunted me since I was a young girl in elementary school. Almost nothing was as disappointing as the word “average” on a test or a writing assignment. I knew I couldn’t afford to be just average. The idea of being just run-of-the-mill troubled me. It translated to someone who keeps trying, but that just doesn’t have it in her -in this case- to reach the top, a place that only “brilliant, talented people can reach.” I have since developed a true aversion for mediocrity.
Second Monster: Being perceived as a little too sensitive
A little sensitive is a politically correct euphemism for “de-fen-sive”, aka too weak to deal with criticism; too jumpy to respond with torturing objectivity to any comments less than positive about your work, and not “sports” enough to crack a joke after a tough exchange, especially with male colleagues.
This monster is shrinking, though. I have come to focus on the big picture and now take any criticism as an opportunity to outperform and compete with myself. A mini flashlight might just do for this one.
Third Monster: Being too ante-Prada
So, I’m not a devil, and I don’t wear Prada. Can I still get to the corner office? Or do I have to tell off every kid on the block to be perceived as tough enough by the crowd? How about I be myself: stay warm; get things done, and keep a balance between being overly firm and sheepishly lenient?
Okay, I’ve calmed down now…
My biggest monster is to reach a point where I realize I have “made it” at the expense of my time with my family, missing precious moments with my loved ones just because I was too busy working on the latest report or on finalizing the next critical document.
- S: One of the monsters- now bigger than my bed- has been following me around and asking: What is the impact you’re making?
What’s your monster?