Be as kind to yourself as you are to me. A client recently told me this was advice he gave his son to help him control his temper while playing his sport. It was great coaching for his son.
It’s even better coaching for himself.
You see, friend, my client is hard on self and easily gets down on self. He grew up rough and has an explanatory style that reflects this old, negative script from his childhood. We’ve been working to flip it for awhile. He’s made a ton of progress over the years. Today, he acknowledged some really good stuff he’s been doing since our last practice and attributed it to “luck.” I stopped him mid sentence and asked him to repeat what he had just said. I then told him it was not luck but, instead, it was a result of his growth as a leader. I did not bullshit him. I esteemed him. He, maybe like you, has a hard time hearing that he’s getting better. So, I told him again and again that he is. I gave him another example where he was giving me credit for something that had actually come from him! I asked him if he thinks I’m some kinda candy ass just handing out compliments. He doesn’t. I asked him if he thinks I’m a bullshit artist just trying to keep him around as a client. Nope, he does not. I asked him if he thinks I just feel sorry for him and am trying to prop him up. Nope.
He wrote his thinking and it was good. Together we are transforming. Always together. This client makes me a better man too. In fact, all my family, friends, and clients do. He’s slowly learning to esteem himself. He’s becoming a better leader, husband, and father because he’s working really hard at ‘em all. He’s not lucky. He is a hard worker and is growing as a result of his efforts. Every leader gets exactly the team they deserve, I reminded him. He’s becoming a better leader and he’s got a better team.
Now if he could just let it in and learn to be as kind to himself as he is to his son.
Are you hard on self, not down on self? Are you allowing yourself to esteem you? Are you hard on self, but easy on others? Are you easy on self, but harder on others? Are you owning your tension? Are you owning others? Are you learning to be as kind to yourself as you are to others? When was the last time you asked another to help you see your progress? When was the last time you asked another to help illuminate your blindspot and kick your behind? Slow down and sit with these questions for awhile, friend.
Live hard. Love harder (Thanks, Teeks)…