5 Ways to Rise Above Self-Affirming Nonsense

It’s pointless to get things done and lose yourself along the way.

Who you are, while you get things done, is the most important thing about you.

its pointless to get things done and lose yourself along the way

Pressures cause leaders to neglect their best selves. The favorite advice of Jim Parker, former CEO of Southwest Airlines, is, “Be yourself.” But…

“I’m being myself,” is self-affirming nonsense, unless you have some idea of what your best self looks like.

Half the battle:

Go beyond describing your best self with negative language.

  1. I didn’t yell.
  2. I held my tongue.
  3. I’m not afraid.
  4. I didn’t quit.
  5. I’m not holding a grudge.

“Not doing” is half the battle. The other half is positive.

5 ways to rise above self-affirming nonsense:

  1. Expand yourself. Look someone in the eye and tell them you appreciate their hard work.
  2. Feed your spirit. Reconnect with purpose. Write a few sentences that describe the reason you came to work today. Circle the most important one.
  3. Define outcomes. What do you want to accomplish today?
  4. Imagine your best self. What are you doing when you’re being your best self. One reader said, “I’m my best self when I’m smiling and laughing.”
  5. Describe one key behavior that expresses your aspirational self. Who do you aspire to be in meetings, tough conversations, and while delegating or giving direction.

Stop thinking about challenges for a moment. Connect with yourself and the people around you.

3 questions:

  1. Imagine your best self, what does that look like in behavioral terms?
  2. Who do you admire? What one behavioral quality of theirs would you like to emulate today?
  3. What are you doing that makes you thankful to be you? Do more of that.

Stop making excuses for neglecting your best self.

Excuses are the reason mediocrity solidifies.

I’m my best self when _______.

How might leaders help others bring out their best selves?

See how Facebook fans and friends filled in, “I’m my best self when ______.”