This weekend, I got to experience TedXEastVan and it was inspiring and engaging! If you’ve never been to a TedX (or Ted) Event, I highly recommend them! If you don’t know what I’m talking about, start here with a list of some of the most popular TedTalks ever! And then look for a local event (or start one like the bold superwoman you are!).
So bold superwoman, I have a question for you.
Have you ever wanted something you didn’t have?
If there's some human inside you, you probably have.
It might have been a glamorous trip or a sexy car. Or maybe after watching some of the world’s best presentations, you want to be a more powerful presenter (I definitely had some TedTalk envy this weekend).
So you won’t get that sexy car after reading this. BUT if you’ve ever wanted a skill you didn’t have, I can help. If you’ve ever been told (by yourself or others) to work on your “weaknesses”, keep reading.
Here’s how a haircut changed my life and how it can change yours!
When I was 14, I was a typical teenager – I wanted what I didn’t have.
What I didn't have was straight hair. I went through desperate lengths to get it. Ironing my hair on ironing boards. Brushing it. Growing out bangs in hope my hair would magically get the hint and straighten out. It didn't.
For the record, bangs with curly hair are a bad idea. I've included a picture for you to really drive the message home.
One day, I went to my hairdresser for a simple cut. What the hairdresser said to me actually changed my life. As she washed and conditioned my hair, she was horrified about the condition of my hair. It was fried.
Exasperated, she said “Stop working against your hair!
Work with it."
It was the epiphany I needed and her advice sticks with me to this day. I listened to her as she told me to LOVE my curly hair. Give it products for curly hair. Stop ironing the curls. Stop doing things that work for straight hair and instead, treat my curly hair the way it wants to be treated.
It turns out the same advice for curly hair works for your own talents and abilities. If you constantly focus on getting better at what you're not good at, you'll probably only ever get mediocre at it. You'll spend a lot of time and energy on being average (just like I spent hours and a lot of money trying to straighten my hair).
Think about all the incredible gifts, knowledge and skills you have.
Start showing the world what you're PHENOMENAL at every chance you get!
For me, I make a conscious choice to NOT do the things I'm not good at. This means not doing analytical work like crunching all my business numbers myself. It means hiring an accountant (even though I have an accounting degree). It means not deep-cleaning my house (I swear it takes me hours longer than it takes anyone else). It definitely means not baking. It means not learning code to build my website. And, there’s nothing wrong with being good at any of these things.
The point is that they are not what I'm good at.
So what am I good at? I love meeting new people so I network most nights of the week. I organize my business and personal life at a borderline-OCD level. I will get on a stage in front of anyone, anytime! When my friends need a slice of positivity, I'm the first person they call and I am honoured to be that person in their lives.
I do what I'm good at. Instead of spending hours doing stuff I'm not great at, I focus on what I'm AMAZING at! And I let my curly hair be curly.
That same advice my hairdresser gave me, I encourage you to take with your career.
When you focus on what you are incredible at, you can SHINE in your work, and your life!
Stop focusing on what you're NOT good at.
Stop working against yourself and keep doing what you ROCK at!
Not the best at spreadsheets? Stop trying to be a mediocre spreadsheeting-number-cruncher. Not great at writing? Delegate, divide, hire someone. Do you love designing and creating graphics? Do you love reading through pages and pages of information and being a real life detective?
Do what you LOVE and are GREAT at! Bring to your team, your friends and family all the magical things YOU do best.
Know what you rock at!
Own what you rock at!
DO WHAT YOU DO BEST!
A word of caution. I'm not saying never work on any weaknesses. Personal development is a gift and we should all be improving ourselves every day. But be kindto yourself. Don't let your struggle to develop your weaknesses overshadow your incredible talents. To become your best self you must know your strengths. OWN your strengths. Work WITH your strengths and show the world your gifts.
Here's proof of my curly hair and love of networking with my husband Troy and I at the TedX after party. I especially love events where I can meet people and support fantastic local businesses! And a little craft beer certainly never hurts either...
Go be amazing, incredible YOU! I can't wait to see you shine.
PS It was through a life-changing leadership program that I learned more about Strengths-based Leadership. It was with my coach that I was able to truly understand what my strengths were and how I could use them to be happier and more successful in my life! If you want to find out what your strengths are, use your strengths more, and think coaching may be what you need to shake up life and find your dreams, click here. It could be the click that changes your life.