Things are kind of a mess right now.
But you’re not.
Even if you feel like you are.
Even if you insist you are.
Things aren’t working well.
Things are broken.
But you’re not.
You’re you, being human in an increasingly complicated and messy world.
And when that world challenges us in unfamiliar and frightening ways, we attempt to control the chaos with things we can fix.
A leaky faucet. That mess of a sock drawer. The time we laze around in favor of more productivity.
Some are easy fixes. Others are not.
So we blame ourselves for not being able to fix what we think needs fixing. For being messy, broken, or incomplete.
I’m here to tell you to stop trying to fix yourself.
There’s nothing broken about you.
I spoke recently with a client who left a position she had held for years at a company she loved when a new manager moved in and made her life miserable.
After months of trying to fix the situation, she decided the only fix she could make was to move on with her career and go elsewhere.
Now she’s looking for new work and reflecting on what she could have done differently. She wants to make sure when she lands a new role that she doesn’t bring any of her own challenges to the new situation,
And while her desire for self-growth and improvement is admirable, she needs to know that the only thing that needs fixing in this situation is the way she thinks about it.
I understand where she’s coming from. High-achievers accustomed to hard work are always looking at what they can improve.
I do this too.
When I took a StrengthsFinders assessment, one that is designed to help you acknowledge and better utilize your strengths, where did my eye go?
Not to my top 5 or top 10 strengths. Nope! I went right for the bottom 5 to see where I needed improvement.
What do I suck at? What needs work? I can fix it!
Are you maximizing how and when you use your strengths, rather than always looking to shore up weaknesses?
Maybe you just need to look from a different vantage point to determine what you see.
Instead of searching for what you need to improve about yourself, look at the improvement you’d make by just focusing on what you’re already good at.
Stop looking for the fixes. Stop fixing what’s not broken.
You’re not a leaky faucet. You’re a human being with human needs and flaws and capabilities. Lots and lots of capabilities.
It’s time to see the big picture.
Fix your gaze accordingly.
Valerie Gordon is a storyteller, humorist, blogger, and motivational speaker. Through her career and communications strategy firm, The Storytelling Strategist, she works with corporations and speaks at conferences on how to harness the power of strategic storytelling. Her new book, “Fire Your Narrator! A Storyteller’s Guide to Getting Out of Your Head and Into Your Life” is available on Amazon.