Who is casting your vote?
Updated: Jun 25, 2018
One of the keys to creating the life you want is understanding how you are making decisions in your life and why. What is motivating you? Why are you going after that job? What is achieving that next goal going to do for you? How are you holding yourself back? So often in life we let other opinions, judgements or perceptions make our decisions. One of the biggest obstacles I work through with my clients is helping them understand what they truly want to do in life and helping them remove the barriers they set in their way. We live in a culture where the number of likes on LinkedIn, Instagram or Facebook outweighs our own opinion. Where we look to social media and others to define what success looks like for us. We put more value in what people think of us - rather than in what we think of ourselves.
We unknowingly live according to everyone else's standards and make decisions based on two key questions: "What will others say? and What will they think?".
I have worked to break the mold throughout my career and have successfully gone against the norm to rise into the higher ranks of organizations very early on. Having experienced so much success in my career, I often had to fight against people's judgements, perceptions and opinions about me, my career or my success. At certain points in our life we find ourselves in a position where we can make a key decision that will impact the rest of our path. I had been deemed a high-performer and someone they could see being a CEO in 10+ years, but I had to ask myself, whose future was I living and what was all this success costing me? Feeling the pressure to choose between being the type of mom I envisioned myself being or a successful business woman, I decided there needed to be a change. I left my successful, enterprise-wide position in a company I loved to work in an industry where I was going to be able to put what was most important to me first, my values of family.
When making this decision I heard a lot of things from my co-workers and peers. I was told "You could never make an impact there, they are incapable of changing. You will be back here soon", "They are so far behind, it will take years for them to catch up to where we are today, you will get so bored", "You’re going where? I just feel like you are throwing away your career", "You had such a bright future here and so many opportunities, why would you make this decision?". Many of the comments I received were negative and disapproving of my decision. Some felt I would be back while others secretly applauded me for making a decision based on my family. Every one of us has a decision to make, we can let others define success for us or we can choose to define success for ourselves.
I spent almost 2 years in this industry and in 2 years I made more impact in this field than I ever did in any position I have had before. In this short time, I created entire HR frameworks, impacted the education field and not only made them competitive in their own industry but implemented solutions that even best businesses couldn't implement yet. All this success while being able to put what is most important to me first, my values of family.
If I had let other opinions, judgements and perceptions define my decisions, I would not be here today. I would not have grown, I wouldn't be running an entire company and I would still be having to make a choice between success and family. Everyone can have an opinion, but you get the only vote. The question you need to ask yourself is "Who is casting my vote?". When you are presented with decisions that can impact the direction of your path, ask yourself:
- What will this do for me, my family and my goals?
- What am I tolerating about my current situation?
- Why am I making this decision?
- What fears are at play? (what people think, your insecurities)?
- What/who is holding me back?
- How does making this decision align with my values?
- If I was able to live a life that aligned with my dreams and values, how would that make me feel?
Every moment you have an opportunity to make a different decision, create an alternative path. Every second you have an opportunity to choose differently - to choose you. Understand who/what is casting your vote, know that you have the power to change everything. Everyone can have an opinion, but you get the only vote. Start casting yours today.
Defy the odds, make your own rules. A year from now you're going to wish you started today. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you make strategic change in your life.