Compare No More

Dr. Seuss has written phenomenal pieces of literature for children that illustrate simple allegories in highly creative ways. Now that I am older and reflect back on the stories that I have read, I realize Dr. Seuss was conveying positive messages and moral concepts that are relatively simple, yet realistically difficult to implement for many people.

“Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You” -Dr. Seuss

By default, we automatically compare ourselves to other people because comparison enables us to create a self gauge of personal perspective. Unfortunately, the results we desire are not always positive and negative results lead to inevitable negative thoughts. Why do we allow ourselves to let others shape and mold the self image that we perceive ourselves to be?

When I was eighteen I began seeking out my first employment opportunity because it was really important to me that I had a summer job after I graduated from high school. One day I walked into a higher end retail store and began shopping for some new outfits for my senior pictures. The stylist (salesperson) that was assisting me at the time was very personable and we got along very well throughout my shopping experience. While at the cash-wrap, purchasing my new pieces, the stylist mentioned that they were in the middle of hiring new stylists and offered me an application. I was ecstatic. I gratefully excepted the application and returned within minutes to turn the application in.

Within a couple days I received a call from the store manager asking me to come back for an interview. Of course I said yes and a week later I was back at Club Monaco at Mall of America for an interview. Please keep mind this was my first interview because I made many mistakes:

The first mistake I made was showing up with a shopping bag from Macy’s because I decided that purchasing new sandals for summer was acceptable before the interview, rather than taking care of personal needs afterwards. Once I arrived within the retail store, I realized I was not the only one being interviewed, but I would be participating in a group interview. Looking at those waiting with me, I realized how underdressed I was for the interview and how much younger I was compared to the three other applicants. After we all sat down together and the interview process began, I became conscious to the gum I was still chewing (which I forced myself to swallow immediately).

The entire process was embarrassing.  Many of the questions asked included prior work experience, where you received your degree or where you are currently attending college, handling conflict in the workplace, etc. I had no prior work experience, I was still in high school, and I had never encountered conflict in the workplace. All I could do was smile, answer questions concisely and carefully and allow my personality to leverage that lack of credibility.

I remember sharing the experience with my parents and notifying them that I am not expecting a call back based on the day’s events.  A week had gone by and I had received no phone call from Club Monaco inviting me back for a second, one on one interview. To my surprise, shortly after accepting that I was probably not going to be asked back, I received a phone call from the store manager for second interview. I was shocked.

I became the youngest employee at Club Monaco that summer and shortly after accepting my employment opportunity I learned that the young stylist that had been helping me the first day I walked into the store was one of the assistant store managers and spoke on my behalf for the job position.  I learned that I had been hired because I was likable, personable, and approachable. How I compared to the other applicants was irrelevant and not a determining factor in how I was perceived by the staff at Club Monaco.

As people, we will always be comparing ourselves to others, but how we interpret the information we gather and what we decide to do with it , accept or reject, determines what we believe ourselves to be. Remain true to who you are and allow yourself to shine through any situation because:

“Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You” -Dr. Seuss

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Compare No More

Enough With The Not-Enough’s

Has anyone ever attempted to persuade you of something long enough that all you wanted to do is scream “ENOUGH!” to get them to stop? Once alleviating all that tension, you have the opportunity to make one of two decisions:

  1. Reject the true or false statement
  2. Accept the true or false statement

Yes, sometimes what other people are telling us has truth and we do need to listen to what they are saying, but there are moments where we are unable to agree because what is being stated does not fit our personal beliefs or morals.

Now, if we are able to put a stop to what other people are telling us that does not align with our own thoughts and actions, then why as women can we not scream “ENOUGH!” to ourselves?

Too often I catch myself saying:

“I am not good enough.”

“I am not smart enough.”

“I am not liked enough by others.”

And the list goes on and on.

All that I am accomplishing by telling myself that I am not enough is creating an unhealthy habit that is debilitating to my opportunity to maximize my full potential. The “not enough” syndrome is a result of the desire to attain perfection. Perfection is a figment of our imagination created by personal and surrounding environmental ideals, but striving for excellence will always yield returns worth calling successes.

So how do we begin to say “enough with the not-enough’s?”

Start with the three R’s:

  1. Realize excellence trumps perfection. You will never be satisfied or content if you are seeking perfection because you will always find something to improve.
  2. Replace the negative enough’s with positive enough’s. You have to begin reminding yourself of all the positive characteristics and attributes you alone possess.
  3. Reach out to people around you. When you are continuously focusing on the things you believe you are lacking, you are unable to see the needs in other people. Setting aside your own insecurities and self doubt could be the difference in making someone else’s life better.

Stop telling yourself you are not enough by accepting the truth and rejecting the lies . Your “not enough” syndrome is what is preventing you from maximizing your full potential and becoming the person you are meant to be.

Enough With The Not-Enough’s