I hear this (“this” being the title) all the time from my mom. She must have told it to me a thousand times. She’s also told me that I am my own worst critic. That’s true. I can often be way harder on myself than anyone else could be.
I have always been an overachiever. I like to surprise people. When people give me a challenge, I’ll do my best to meet the goal. For example, if a teacher gives out extra credit, I get it done the first night. That’s just part of who I am. Usually, I’m not doing this for the teacher, or even the extra credit. I’m doing it to prove to myself that I can do it. Because I love to surprise myself as well.
On the other hand, I really don’t like to let myself down. I don’t like to feel like I haven’t done as well as I could have. It’s not a nice feeling to have. For instance, if I’m writing an article, and the words aren’t coming out right, and none of it’s coming together, I get upset and discouraged. The reason is because this is something I like. I want to do it right. Sometimes the only thing you can do in a situation like that is to get up, and walk away. Don’t keep sitting there, staring at the page, or the screen. Give yourself a break, and your creative juices will flow easier.
Even if I don’t quite enjoy it, I still want to do it well. That’s something we all want, isn’t it? To be great at the things we do, and succeed at the things we try? Unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. I discovered a while ago I’m not super coordinated when it comes to dancing. I never really have been. One of my friends is pretty good at it, however. I get frustrated when I’m trying to do some of the things she is, and they just aren’t working. I try not to let it get to me. However, I try to look at it in this way. The harder the struggle, the greater the payoff. If something’s really hard, don’t give up on it. You have to keep with it, because it will be worth it in the end.
Public speaking is another thing that I don’t really like, and am not super good at. I’ve figured out, though, that it’s not being judged by my peers, or even the grade I could get that makes me not enjoy it. It’s the fact that when I do it, I feel like I’m letting myself down. I always want to do my best, and I don’t like it when I don’t manage to do that. I have a big speech coming up, and I’m really nervous. I want to do well, to prove to myself that I can do it.
There are always going to be some things that you won’t be super good at. Public speaking might be that thing for me. I’m not instinctively good at public speaking, but I’m hoping that with practice, I can improve. I have to give myself room to improve, and not be too hard on myself if I don’t get it right away.
No matter what your strengths and weaknesses are, you are always going to have something that you wish you were better at. When you find it, don’t be hard on yourself. Try to remember the things that you are good at. Remember that you can’t be amazing at everything, but you can sure try! And above all, remember to always be nice to yourself. See you next week!
“Reprinted from Hagel Publications, Inc. dba as Courier Newspapers”