It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Time for caroling, ugly sweaters, never ending hot chocolate, and white elephant gift exchanges. This time of year also brings with it our beloved end of year reviews!
This week I had my year end review for my job. Before the review I had to rate myself on a scale of 1-10 in a few categories. The prep was nerve wracking! In the pursuit of humility, I scored myself right in the middle or one point above the middle in areas where I know I could have scored higher. I went into the review with a positive attitude and high expectation that I would receive genuine feedback about my work outcomes and character. What I did not expect to receive was a shedding of the years of lies that I’ve told myself. All of this came out with one simple statement: “You’ve got to give yourself more credit.”
For most of my life I chose to live under the radar and behind the scenes. I was so afraid to fail that I would try to minimize the risk of failure by saying no to opportunities that I was actually interested in. Whenever I did achieve something great, I would dismiss the achievement as if it was a fluke.
With enough lies you can silence even the greatest force of confidence.
When we dismiss achievements we are choosing not to acknowledge our God given gifts, strengths, talents, and abilities. You cannot be responsible for what you do not acknowledge, so that takes you off the hook of being a participant in the betterment of this world.
Every time my son (age 2) does something well, he acknowledges his achievement with two fists in the air and squeals, “I did it!” Every day and multiple times a day, we celebrate his achievements. When his little sister sees him celebrating, it inspires her to try the same thing. On the flip side, now that he has acknowledged what he is capable of, I know that I can ask him to do more. Not for the sake of doing more, but to continue unlocking the greatness within him.
As an adult it’s scary to acknowledge that, “I did it!” You don’t want to appear arrogant, but it also means you can’t back down from it. You have now shown the world that you are extraordinary and capable of creating something that will make a lasting impact. You have no more excuses; so let’s go! Expect more opportunities for you to participate in making this world, your community, your home a better place. So go ahead and write the song, create a new process or system, say yes, and keep acknowledging the gifts you possess.
That is being confident.
That is being brave.