Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Mentoring yourself

Image result for cheer pom poms clipartLet's take our inner critic and per her to good use!  I'm tired of mine mumbling about how my eyeliner is crooked or my time wasting only got books read and no laundry done. (she's very hard on me.) My inner critic rolls her eyes a lot, sigh in great exasperation and occasionally sounds like my mom.

I'm hard on my mentorees too. However, I offer advice and corrections with love, support and the best of intentions.... an approach I don't often offer myself.

I need correction. I need some criticism even though I don't like it. It is useful to be able to give yourself feedback.

We can do all this with a little understanding and encouragement instead of the usual "oh I'm such an idiot!" and other inner stories of the same type.

Think of it as mentoring yourself.

  • Getting it right the first time is less important than trying/practicing
  • Talk through successes so they can be repeated easily
  • Talk through mistakes or course corrections so they can be done differently in the future
  • Let go of the things that make you roll your eyes at yourself if you'll never have to face the same situation/challenge again. Move on!
  • Look at your daunting plans with your inner critic and remind both of you of the strengths you possess that will help you in the rough spots
  • Remember to cheer yourself on for no reason at all except you were there
We share with respect and kindness; let's include ourselves in the coaching. 

Monday, November 20, 2017


Deaths, illnesses, divorce (singular), disappointments - we all have those stories which showcase our ability to bounce back and continue. We also have stories of success which require resilience - like a sugar crash after eating a whole birthday cake (true story!),  the letdown and thoughts of 'how can That be topped ever again?' can be just as difficult. 
Resilience is a great topic to discuss in a mentoring conversation. Uncover your fears, your strengths and your questions.
My latest story is wonderful view of seeing my son launched into the world as an adult. After 25+ years of having his care in my hands - directly and, later, indirectly - seeing him take on his latest career and find his strengths made me proud, happy and grateful. Then I sat back and thought.... now what? What's the point in the job I have? The relationships? The house? ... you get the idea. While I made the best choices for both myself and my son at the time, I found that pleasure in his independence also meant a crack in my supposedly solid foundation. 
So I'm stepping out into the void... watch me go!!​

Monday, November 13, 2017


I worked for a manager who had his issues - he was abrupt, impatient and directorial. But if you fulfilled a request, he always responded with "thx!"

Some folks may feel this simply acknowledges receipt of the work. Some have said it was a knee-jerk habit that held no meaning. Some grumbled that he could not be sooo busy that typing the extra letters in "thank you" was a chore. Regardless of the motivation (and I believe he was genuinely saying thanks), he said it.

It isn't a raise. It's not a big hug. It doesn't touch the extra hours it may have taken or how I juggled my schedule. It's certainly not a gift certificate for shoes. Heck, it's not even as a good as a handwritten post-it note. Yet, it has value.

He acknowledged that I contributed - every time.

In this current day of 10-12 hour work days, online language abbreviations, multi-tasking commutes and compressed sleep schedules, things slip. At the best of times, we can only present snapshots of our thinking to each other. In today's craziness, we're reduced to a few choice pixels.

Make 'thank you' one of them....with or without the extra letters.