Your Experiences Make or Break You. Here’s a Make You Challenge

We’re all a work in progress. And sometimes we all start to have those self-doubting negative self-talk conversations in our head – especially when launching a new product/service/business. I’ve been having them a lot lately as I’m exploring an idea that keeps getting bigger (and scarier) with each thought. So I wrote myself a little historical reminder. Thought it might offer some wisdom to you as well.

  • I’ve been scolded for breaking rules. I’ve sat through the verbal beating with both of us knowing we’d be having this meeting again. Soon. Break Rules. They’re Probably Not Going To Fire You Or Send You To Your Death. 
  • I live by the philosophy that there is always an exception to the rule. I’m going to be that exception and prove to you I was right. New Thinking and New Ideas Require Being An Exception. 
  • I’ve been praised for taking risks; by the same people who scolded me for breaking rules. I kept taking risks. The praise to scolding ratio was probably 4:1 Take Risks. Often. Big and Small.
  • I managed to get the words “accounting” and “fun” in the same sentence on student evaluations . However I had to refuse to tell management how that happened because I tossed aside the “approved/standardized” teaching format of the company and would have been canned on the spot. Do What You Think is Right For Your Customer.
  • I’ve been hired by people who couldn’t remember my name but knew me as the “guy with the propeller on his head.” Doesn’t matter how they remember you just that they do. Have a Niche/Gimmick/Shtick. (especially when you have a tough last name)
  • I’ve been coached on my “colorful” language. Colorful language? F*ck that. I curse. Humorously. Never directed towards anyone with malice. You all curse too. (Okay, most of you.) Be Real and Be Yourself.
  • I’ve pushed back on things that made no sense, been told I push the envelope just a bit too far, and asked “why must you always cause trouble.” I replied with why are you afraid to go against the herd. Have a Spine And Some Convictions.
  • I’ve been the recipient of harsh criticism. I took that criticism to heart many times; then processed it in order to make important decisions about my life. Hurt Feelings Don’t Help You Grow.
  • I’ve been told “maybe this isn’t the place for you to work any longer.” She was right; so I quit. Don’t Stay for a Paycheck. Your Mental and Physical Health Matter.
  • I was referred by a client to a colleague of his with these words: “He’s a bit controversial but that’s what we love about him.” Controversial remarks sparked action and challenged people to be better. Or to use an overused buzz phrase – “think outside the box.” Don’t Offer The Same Ideas As Everyone Else. That’s Not What They’re Paying You For.
  • I’ve never been fired. I kinda knew when I was possibly going to be fired and resigned before they had the satisfaction. Always Stay One Step Ahead.
  • I’ve been called a “Human Resources Nightmare.” I’ve been called worse. Don’t Conform. 
  • I was told by a Human Resources client {jokingly} that I was actually the perfect person for the job she was trying to fill but she’d probably have to fire me in 30 seconds. I told her she needed to look at company policies and procedures and really assess whether they could be the progressive pioneering company they want to be. {not jokingly} Challenge Stupidity and Encourage Change.
  • I’ve been told by others that I’d be good at something – when I couldn’t see it in myself; nor would have ever even considered that path. Thank you WW members and Conviser Duffy CPA Review students for getting me where I am today. Explore the Part of Yourself That Others See And You Don’t.
  • I’ve been the talk of “EVERY “management meeting. So I was told. Exposure is good. Be Your Own Brand.
  • I was told “THEY” didn’t know what to do about me. Except “THEY” was only 1/2 of they. The other 1/2 of they turned their head because of the revenue I added to the bottom line. Again, Ignore Rules; Just Don’t Do Anything Illegal, Immoral or Unethical.
  • I was told by a new manager that some company leaders had problems with my actions. I confronted those leaders regarding the mixed messages of telling me one thing and then telling their peers something else in order to fit in, tow a company line, or stick their nose so far up a butt in order to advance. Years of respect and what I thought were strong relationships out the window in a moment. A moment. I had more respect for the new manager who shared the news second-hand – and I didn’t like her at all. Call People Out On Their Shit.
  • I was asked why a grown man wears a propeller hat. I ask those people why they’re not wearing their brand? Your Confidence With Being Different Is What Other People Envy.
  • I was told I would attract a more diverse audience if I lost the hat. I found my sweet spot. And it ain’t the Fortune 50. Know Where You Should Be Playing.

Well that’s it. Just some thoughts. If it got you thinking at all I’d love to hear from you!

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