How to choose your mentor – pitch in Mentors are for life! Work in progress
“While people may make you feel small to keep you in check, they know your true value. It is you who should not lose sight of your value”
Merry Christmas folks!
It has been an eventful year, especially given the uncertainties of the previous year; circa 2020.
We looked forward to 2021 with a lot of hope, faith, some trepidations maybe, because who knew what a year after a global pandemic will look like?
A note of warning, the Virus is still out there, mutating and going strong. So be careful, don’t let your guards down, keep social distancing, wear your masks and stay safe!
Of course, this short note is not to talk about the mutating virus, far from it. I am actually sharing a story, a personal one. I do hope you glean a thing or two.
Coming from a year where my hope was shaken, self-doubts was prevalent, I questioned a lot of things, even God. Having lost dear ones close to me, fighting unseen battles that can only be fought by myself. I wasn’t very optimistic. The gains of 2020 paled in comparison to the minuses in my opinion, it felt like I was sitting duck for troubles and travails.
Suffice to say I entered into 2021 tired!
I was in the head space of “what more could go wrong?”
I resolved to chart my own course and not wait around for things to happen. I took stock and asked pertinent questions, resolving to refocus and ensure that 2021 would be a better year notwithstanding. I reviewed my plans both short and long term, made adjustments where necessary determined to win on all fronts.
Two weeks into the year I had a motor accident that still makes me wonder how I came out with minimal injuries. The vehicle was a write off!
What a way to begin the year right?
That told me immediately that the race is not for the swift nor the battle to the strong!
I am not one to sit around feeling sorry for myself counting my losses so I was determined to make up on things I could control – my career being one of it. I love most parts of my job and I am proud of the work I do. Let’s say I am good at it and I used to be happy while doing it. However, suddenly I started to feel like something was missing. I could not place it and work was beginning to be a burden, something I no longer looked forward to. The environment had become hostile and it was affecting my psyche. It was seeping toxicity into other areas of my life and I was letting it.
I was dancing with depression!
I complained so much to my dear friend who recommended professional coaching. I got a crash coaching session (MindVolution) addressing the conundrum of making headways on that front which helped put some things into perspective. I realized I felt stuck because I believed I had no other options. A lot had been said at work that I allowed to overwhelm me thereby condemning myself. I couldn’t see the bigger picture. I forgot who I was and what truly defines me.
Using the guide drafted by my coach I began to put things into practice. Was it easy? No! But it had to be done.
Voila! Opportunity came knocking within my organization that was something I wanted, away from the immediate environment that was stealing my joy without my permission. I pursued it and did well on the assessment and interviews and all but a certain “power that be” decided to be a stumbling block. Unfortunately, I could not move past it.
When I got the feedback I was crushed! No, devastated, or any other word you could use to describe what I felt.
I even cried in my closest, lol.
Again, my coach came to the rescue. He said I should take the feedback as a positive impression i.e your boss makes you feel like you are not good enough but when he was asked to release you to another department he flat out refused saying they cannot take his key staff.
Something to note here, while people may make you feel small to keep you in check, they know your true value. It is you who should not lose sight of your value.
That singular incidence made me determined, If I am not getting the desired change within this organization then I will get it outside of it. While I waited and worked towards it, I will ensure to give the best performance I could muster so that when I leave they will know I left. Talk about some impact there! And yes I did, I am super proud.
Galvanized, I worked hard, even outside of regular working hours. I had a goal to achieve! While at work, I tuned out the negativity.
I found out that when negative things are thrown your way you do not have to accept it.
Reaffirm to yourself what you know to be true about who you are and your capacities. When your errors are magnified and your achievements downplayed, choose to focus on your wins.
When you present a brilliant idea and they decide to throw in a kink just so it undermines you, be rest assured that the idea is still yours even when they present it as theirs in another form. You know why? They will come back to you to implement!
I built a toxicity proof zone around me where I looked from the inside out. My other colleagues must have wondered how I was acting unaffected and just seem to get things done. I had minimized the effect of my work on my life on the outside of it. When I get overwhelmed I leaned on my support system I could count on which wasn’t about putting a band aid on a gaping wound – an oasis.
New opportunities came along outside of the organization. Some I knew I would not take because it didn’t fit into my overall plans outside of just making ends meet.
Then I got introduced to a brand I have always eyed. I must have talked off the ears of the introducer about wanting a change in jobs so much they had no choice but to help with a contact.
I ran with it with persistence, faith, hope even when it seemed like nothing was going to happen.
I will be starting 2022 on a new platform professionally!
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, it is my pleasure to inform you that my boss is still reeling from the shock of my resignation. He thought he had me by the proverbial balls. How he chose to react to the news is material for Nollywood drama.
Why am I sharing this?
It is easier to go with the flow, put your head under and take what life throws at you while wallowing in self-pity saying “why me”?
A quick question- what are you doing to turn the situation around to your advantage? Don’t be lazy about your life!
Take advantage of the resources available to you, especially the humans. It’s all in there somewhere, find it!
In this clime, especially in the workplace subordinates are expected to take whatever it is their bosses dishes out and we chalk it to ‘getting the job done’.
Dear manager, you should read up on the difference between a boss and a leader. What kind of legacy are you leaving behind you? What would you rather be known for? a groomer or a destroyer of talents?
So yes, 2021 was by no means an easy year for me but I learnt, I grew, and I have a lot of reasons to celebrate. One of which I just shared with you briefly.
Whilst nothing is certain and tomorrow is not promised us, here I am reaffirming that that my worth is only determined by me and I have the power to choose that which aligns with my values.
I am looking forward to a whole new 2022! Are you?
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