Angie Morgan, October 15, 2018
This year has been a year of personal distraction. My husband, Matt Morgan, has been running for Congress – the US House of Representatives. So in addition to leading Lead Star, I’ve been running myself ragged volunteering for the campaign, while working to ensure Matt’s race doesn’t impact the goals of our kids (which mainly include sports participation and social life activities.)
If I were to rate myself in every area of my life, I’d give myself a B. I’m spread pretty thin, so giving something my 150% attention doesn’t happen. (I’m not even going to talk about the state of laundry in my house, or the grocery situation – the other day, I realized I didn’t have bread or flour. Those are staples, my mom reminded me … or lectured me … or chastised me … I’m still trying to figure that one out.)
I recently decided that “being spread to thin” for too long isn’t a place I want to linger in. Being a B student can pass, but it’s not excellent. Excellence is something I strive for, so to dwell in B territory, especially when I know I’m better, is incredibly dissatisfying.
Now that the election is only a few weeks away, I’m daydreaming about Nov 7., the day after we get to vote. Regardless of the election outcome, I know one thing for sure: I get to find my groove again.
If we were to be 100% honest with ourselves, we all find periods of life where we’re distracted – where there are heavy things going on in our worlds that need attention, yet we’re not in a position to drop any of the balls that we’re juggling. So we keep adding to the chaos, adding to our calendar, adding to our commitments to the point when we’re not able to be our best because we just don’t have the time … or focus … or energy. So, what do we do?
- Take the Long View. Recognize that this is a period of your life. It doesn’t characterize your life. It’s just a very busy chapter. Acknowledge it for what it is and constantly ask “If I were to look back on this period two years from now, what would I tell myself?” Perspective often helps us refocus on what we need to be doing right now to manage all that’s going on in our lives.
- Acknowledge Uncomfortable Truths. I know many of us become defensive when others point out to us that we’re overwhelmed. Don’t try to hide the fact that you’re not performing at your best. Be accountable for it. Don’t make excuses; just make a commitment that you’ll work to do better.
- Don’t Make Excuses. For a hot minute, I would tell myself “Maybe my B is someone else’s ‘A.’” What I was trying to do is let myself off the hook by saying that my good is actually pretty great. We all know what it looks and feels like to perform at our best. Don’t try to tell your ego one thing in order for it to be better. Be honest with your performance and compare yourself against the only person who matters – you. Have high expectations and work to exceed them.
- Recommit to Excellence. Work to envision when you can get back to a new routine; a better, more focused routine. Then, have a plan when you get there so you can deliver a performance you’re proud of.
Being your best matters. For one, it builds pride. It also inspires confidence, which puts you in the arena for greater opportunities.
I can’t wait until next semester – I’m going to be gunning for straight A’s!