@WOLVERINE: I have been following you since the time you were our Operations Director. You probably can no longer remember me. I was just one of the many Team Leads under your organization with you as The Captain. I am now a family man. While a number of my peers have become either senior managers or directors, I was just recently promoted as manager. I must admit I had my share of failings. But I have been clean for ten years now. Thus, the break. And I intend to catch up and one day be like you, sir. Do you think I still have a fighting chance? I’m willing to do whatever it takes.
DJ: Catch up with respect to what? It’s totally legit if you’re feeling left behind considering the experiences which you did not disclose and that a number of your peers are leveling up in their gigs. I am positive, though, that whatever it is that went through, it taught you important lessons. There was a story about a frog on one side of a river, plotting its move to cross to the other side. Before it could hop in and swim across, a farmer who was walking by saw the frog, kicked it so hard that it flew across the river and landed on the other side. Not the most dignified move. But it got the frog where it wanted to be.
So, what’s the takeaway from the story? Everything is as it should be. All those ups and downs can school us, toughen us up and make us even more lit. If you truly followed me, life hasn’t exactly been a cakewalk for me either. Dealt with clinical depression not once but three times. No need to spill all the tea. But they’re stuff that molded me into the person I am now. That’s why I’m all about ditching labeling a situation as good or bad. We’re all a work in progress, going through the grind. Our power lies not in buying into our circumstance but on how we react to it. Come to think of it, now you know better. And thankfully, it’s because of what happened.
Ever heard of Colonel Sanders? The founder of KFC. Dude was 65 when he kicked off that finger-licking good fried chicken game. Faced rejection over a thousand times before hitting the jackpot. What’s success to you, though? Don’t let society’s vibe dictate it. Figure out what makes you come alive. Is it a position title, stacking those bills or seeing your kids graduate? If you haven’t really pondered on it, take a sec to do that. Then gauge how you’re moving toward those goals week by week. Don’t just measure stuff in terms of achievement. Appreciate as well how far you’ve gone. Per my experience, perseverance and hard work will pay off in the end. So, keep moving forward. Even if it feels like you’re moving at a snail’s pace. Remember, success is not a race. It is a journey. And every journey is different.
Now, if you’re feeling the FOMO (fear of missing out) on social media and it’s messing with your vibe, consider a chill break or dialing down your screen time. If you must, unfollow accounts that tend to make you feel bad about yourself. Platforms like X, IG and FB bombard us with posts about what we lack. While comparisons motivate us to better ourselves, it also leads to negative thoughts. What we’re seeing is a highlight reel of other people’s lives. Snapshots of their best moments. Why should we use them to question aspects of our own lives? Social media keeps us in the loop about our family and friends. Current events too. But like most things, it’s best in moderation.
So, starting today, bro, note what you like about yourself. Don’t just throw out generic vibes like “good people skills.” Be specific. Like saying you’re proactive, for example, or amazing at putting your baby to sleep. And if you have to go back to your past, it is to benchmark how much you’ve grown. Be proud of your growth. I am. No need to play catch-up. You’re exactly where you need to be. Just keep grinding. I wish you used your real name so we can have a face-to-face convo over coffee. And if this offer appeals to you, you know where to find me. Wink!