I once worked for someone where nothing was ever good enough. I felt like I had to prove myself over and over again no matter how long I had been in the role. It gets exhausting and it crushes your morale and drive to do better.  

You shouldn’t have to live life running through fire every day to prove your worth as a person and as a leader.  Here are some thoughts to help remind you that you have nothing to prove. 

Judge your success by your own standards

Our society today is one of comparison. We want to be like the person living their best Instagram worthy life, our extended friends and family that live in our dream house, or even the jerk that is sitting in the job that is meant for us. 

The problem with comparing yourself to others is that it will always be an unfair comparison and you’ll never be truly satisfied.  Judge your success on your own standards. It doesn’t mean you stop pushing yourself for growth. It means to focus on your individual progress instead of putting it up against other people’s situations.

We talked about this more in-depth way back in PTB Episode 36: Who is your competition?

You can’t please everyone

As an early leader, I know I tried too hard to please everyone. I felt that I wasn’t the best leader unless everyone was happy.  Understand that you aren’t going to please everyone. It’s impossible, because of so many variables in ethics, upbringing, lifestyle, and perspective. 

Lead by what’s best for the group and have confidence in your leadership and decision-making ability. When you live your life this way, you have nothing to prove to the naysayers and doubters.  When a person doesn’t care for your leadership style, accept it, and keep moving forward. 

It only matters what a few people think

It’s easy to get hung up in what other people think of you. You see these scenarios play out in school, work, professional & volunteer organizations and in social circles.  Like a good golden retriever, we want to please others and be liked.

At the end of the day, the most valuable relationships in your life will likely total 10 people are less. This is your innermost circle. These people matter. Outside of that, most people you meet will likely exit your circle at some point in time. 

You can give too much mental space and attention to people that are inconsequential to you in the big scheme of things.

One of my favorite scenes from the Office is when Andy is destroying himself because people on the internet are trolling his youtube videos.  It’s funny how much he loses control but it’s also funny because that reaction is a reality for many people. 

You determine your happiness

At the end of the day, you determine your level of happiness no matter the circumstances in your life. No one can take your happiness away from you unless you allow them to.  

Your definition of happiness may be very different from someone else’s. Others strive for the biggest beach house that they can’t afford and you may just want to live in a tiny house on the side of a mountain. 

Chase what makes YOU happy instead of allowing others to build a narrative that you have to prove yourself towards time and time again. 

You have nothing to prove to anyone but yourself, (a new job or client being the exception). Push yourself for growth and let success follow you. 

Make a better tomorrow.