‘Never compare your insides to someone else’s outsides’, was Rob Lowe’s message to his son as he began his collegiate career at a notable east coast school. It is still great advice for us today.
Chet challenges us in today’s blog to move from comparing and competing…which is our natural state in our individualistic culture, IMHO… and instead move toward complimenting, congratulating, and encouraging. Please note the verb tense…present continuous. To do this consistently therefore takes purposeful Core work.
Those who know me well know that I am a natural encourager. I love giving words of affirmation. Love it. It costs nothing and can be the breakthrough or possibly a lifeline for a fellow human. It communicates that I see them. I esteem them for who they are. Our fellow Builder Petey is The Master Encourager of the Band. Fact. And we have all been blessed by his words of affirmation, many times when we needed them most.
Those who know me well also know how competitive I am. As a lifelong Achiever/Learner/Maximizer I love the thrill of competition and winning. I learn from losses…but doesn’t mean I have to like the ‘L’. The journey the Lord has had me on in recent years is that of sanctified competition. I’m far from perfect and am an ongoing WIP, as one epic Human Foosball match last summer reminded me, however as my Core gets stronger here is what has shifted for me…
I’ve redefined my ‘W’s’. I love to fight to win With and For my team, With and For my Band. I love to fight to improve performance resulting in lasting, positive, and eternal impact for those I am privileged to Build. My Identity as an investor in people and as a Builder of leaders and teams has influenced my reframing of my ‘W’s’. My Worldview is that we are each made in the image of God and are His unique masterpiece, which directly informs how I choose to compliment, congratulate, and encourage. And this belief also helps me to not compare. Another one of my PA’s is that I think about how silly it would be to compare Michelangelo’s David with Monet’s Garden at Giverny. One could, but why? They are both amazing masterpieces. This mindset helps me to avoid the comparison trap.
When I see my fellow Builder gaining belief I am going to step in and esteem him. When I see my fellow young Builder leveling up X 5 in a short amount of time because of his commitment to do more Core work and get more reps you bet I’m going to rush in and call him out to celebrate the growth we are seeing. When I see my client gaining new insights and applying what she’s learning in work and in life I will call that out and affirm her dedication and commitment to excellence as a leader.
One of my favorite exercises from The Twelve Essentials of Excellence is found in the Courage Essential. It is simple, yet powerful. This creates the space to give a teammate or teammates courage by sharing encouragement and esteem. The ground rules are that what is shared must be specific, personal, and from the heart. And the one who receives this esteem can simply say ‘thank you.’ I’ve seen many kairos moments as a result over the years with clients and teams using this simple exercise…which leads toward Oneness.
Friend, write what you are feeling, thinking, and sensing right now. Do you find yourself caught in the comparison trap or are you building your Core in order to follow Rob Lowe’s advice? Do you find it easy or challenging to encourage or esteem another? Why?
For me this is a chosen lifestyle…CCE with CCD in love.