Our industry is a constant flow of interesting ideas, areas and topics to learn. This is great if we’re full of enthusiasm. But the more experience we get, the more we see that it’s impossible to learn everything. We start to specialize, and a feeling of FOMO starts to grow inside us, because we are concerned that we pass up the opportunity to learn all this great stuff and we’re soon going to be out of business with outdated skills. At least this is what our inner dialog may tell us. Some of us may feel bad about that. We would like to push forward and never get behind.
But do we even give ourselves a space to celebrate what we have achieved so far? Can we see how many things we have learned?
I noticed that when I run an interview I usually expect certain things from candidates. And the more experienced I am, the more I expect from others because the things seem obvious to me – even though I didn’t know about them a year ago. This could be referred to as a curse of knowledge – we no longer remember the difficulties we had in the past learning all of this.
As I wrote in the article about my CliftonStrengths results, my top 3 strengths are: learners, input, and achiever. They all combine into a need to constantly learn new things and push forward. But luckily the second of them – input – made me write down things that I learned.
I didn’t really pay too much attention to it but I had created a “learning tracking” sheet and it’s been my habit to fill it in for the last six years! When I looked at it I realized how much progress I had made. Of course there’s still so much to do, but it lets me feel good about myself, calm down a bit, and gain some motivation.
Recently my friend has shared a blog with me. I read an article about becoming a full-time creator and I immediately felt bad about running my blog. “Damn, there’s so much stuff that I don’t know”, “I’m doing everything wrong!”, “I should stop now and not waste my time for things I should not do”. That’s what happened in my head.
So I did a thought experiment.
- There are three points. A, B and C.
- A is the point that I was at 5 years ago.
- Point B is where I am now.
- C is where I would like to be in 5 years.
When I was in point A, did I think that reaching point B was attainable? Not really.
Is this different from being at point B, and looking up at point C? Not really. So why am I moaning?
That’s why I think it’s important to celebrate our success. I already have a habit of filling in the learning tracking sheet. Now I’m going to develop another one to look at regularly, and appreciate my progress. Do you also have your own ways of celebrating things you have achieved? Then write a comment.