Over the last year, I’ve been taking a deep look at what I did in the past, why I do what I do now, and what it truly means to reach my full potential in a way that’s authentic to my true identity.
In school, I was in the top 1%, in terms of standardized tests, grades, etc. So, I naturally took that on as my identity; what made me special and the place I was “supposed” to be. But looking back, I don’t believe I was living in congruence with my true self. I was smart enough and disciplined enough to make academic results happen, but my true self is very tenderhearted and would have rather spent time with people than accomplishing tasks. I would have felt a lot more like myself in high school had I gotten some A’s and B’s while still finding the time to cultivate deeper relationships.
Over the years, it’s been exciting to see the relational part of me develop more and more, as I allow the labels of “high achiever, successful, top performer,” etc., to fall off.
Likewise, you’re not a set of labels. You’re you.
Your sense of identity drives your behavior. So when you’re confused about who you are, you can have a lot of confusion about how you should invest your time.
A few signs that there’s a conflict between who you think you need to be and who you actually are, particularly at work, include:
- Dreading going into the office
- Feeling drained by the majority of the work you do
Elizabeth Grace Saunders is the founder and CEO of Real Life E®, a time coaching and training company, and the author of “The 3 Secrets to Effective Time Investment: How to Achieve More Success With Less Stress” and “How to Invest Your Time Like Money.”
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