Has someone ever made you feel like a failure?
Whether it was their intention or not, it’s so easy to take it personally and get down on ourselves when we really care about doing a good job.
I still remember the sting of it years ago when it struck me hard.
I was sitting in another manager’s office, a meeting I bravely arranged to discuss some issues between our teams.
I figured instead of harboring this frustration and resentment, I should do something about it.
A minute after I sat down, the meeting took a turn for the worst.
She took control and used our time to make me feel like I was a poor leader for not being able to work this out myself. Apparently I shouldn’t have needed to involve her.
She also shared that a lot of her team thought I was a bitch.
Have you also dealt with a difficult personality at work?
Okay in retrospect I probably had a little stick up my butt at the time.
But I was a new manager – only 2 MONTHS!!! – and I thought I was doing the right thing to openly discuss this and come up with a better solution.
I can’t remember how the meeting ended.
All I recall is I felt like crap the entire weekend.
I really let it get to me.
Clearly, she’s the bitch. Right?
Actually, that’s irrelevant.
The only thing that matters here is how uncomfortable I was with my relationship to failure.
Of course I wasn’t the best leader. I had only been in this role for TWO months!
Of course I’m still learning. Of course I’ll make mistakes!
There are so many qualities we try so hard not to be.
Can you relate to that? Is there a quality, failure or otherwise, that you do everything in your power to avoid being?
We think we’re in control, but really when we feel this way, we’re giving all of our power away.
Fear of failure was making me its bitch.
How about instead, we create space for acceptance?
What if instead of disowning the part of me that felt like a failure, and trying to hide it, I actually shine the light on it and let it be okay?
I asked myself a couple of questions when I couldn’t shake the disappointment in myself.
1. How am I a failure?
I recognized I can’t possibly succeed at everything, and there are many things I fail at. Sometimes I cook a meal that comes out horribly!! Sometimes my sales pitches generate little to no interest. Sometimes I give talks and feel like my performance was crap.
2. How am I not a failure?
I’ve set so many goals and accomplished them!! I’ve won many speaking competitions. I ran my first group coaching program earlier this year and loved how it went. I’ve dealt with anxiety head on and barely struggle with it anymore. So many wins!
3. What’s the benefit of “failing?”
We can’t all be good at everything. This is what makes us unique. It means we need each other. We can help each other! “Failing” allows us to learn, grow, and come back even stronger. It allows us to appreciate how far we’ve come. To fail is to be human. To try again anyway is to THRIVE. That is definitely worth feeling.
As I progressed through these questions, I began the process of loving and accepting not just the “good” parts of me but ALL parts of me.
How would it feel to love and accept yourself completely, to the point that no one could make you feel that crappy again?
Now as I look back, I’m so grateful for that experience in that manager’s office for allowing me to accept the part of me that fails.
Because that’s still me, and all of me is worthy of love.
Your Turn: What quality are you trying to avoid being? How would it feel to let that be okay? Take some time to write out your answers to these 3 questions and cultivate more love + acceptance for your beautiful self. You’re worth it.
If you struggle with being your own worst critic and you’re exhausted by the voices in your head telling you you’re not good, smart, beautiful, or capable enough, I want to invite you into a total transformation to build your confidence and courage to go after ANYTHING YOU WANT and know you deserve! Check out the Worthy + Wealthy: 14 Days of Empowerment course HERE!