Jessica Soroky’s Guest Post #36: Trusting Myself to Stop Comparing

Relative to those who have just joined the The Leadership Gift™ Program, I have a lot of experience practicing my personal leadership and responsibility.

Relative to Bill, Christopher, and Scotty, I still have a lifetime of learning, practice, and mastery ahead of me.

In the past, I would use relativity as a measurement and a motivator to reach that next level. (I still catch myself doing this often). It was a desire to keep up with the Joneses.

I talk often about the time period in my life in which I chose to take the blue pill and dive headfirst into a world where people are accountable, responsible, broken, accepting and radically inclusive.

It was in those early days I remember saying to my now mentor, Scotty Bevill, “I want to be you.”

Reflecting back, I see what a crazy thing that was to say to someone, especially after having met him only 24 hours earlier.

The hard truth, the thing that causes a lump in my throat, is realizing I said that because I didn’t trust myself. How could I be him when I didn’t have my own identity?

Trusting Myself to Stop Comparing

A few months after meeting Scotty, I was observing a training course he was co-teaching with another one of his mentees.

At one of the breaks, she pulled me aside and gave me some of the best advice I’ve ever heard: “Don’t try to be him, speak like him, or teach like him. You will kill yourself trying to measure up. Be YOU and find your own style.”

I laughed it off at first, denying that I was trying to do that – to be him. In the months following I would facilitate meetings, teach trainings, and speak comfortably in front of CIO’s and executives. The catch was I could do all of these things until Scotty walked in the room.

I instantly began evaluating myself relative to how Scotty would do it. Would he be doing this, or saying it this way? I would get flustered and start to trip over my words.

I was aware that I was responding this way out of fear – fear of disappointing Scotty and fear of being compared to him.

It took me months to figure out that those fears where only real for me. Instead of finding my own identity, I was trying to make someone else’s fit.

Along my journey, I have found many moments of power and freedom – today I am aware that those moments were when I was most comfortable being me.

As we go through school, the closer we get to high school graduation, the more pressure there is to decide the career path we believe we want. The pressure continues to mount as altering that path gets more and more expensive with every additional college course that is required.

It is in this time period of life, in our twenties, that we are just starting to figure out our individuality. Yet in this time of growth, we are limited to a list of majors and degree programs instead of having the freedom to explore and experiment.

Even in a career I adore and waking up everyday excited, I still find myself lost every once in a while, searching for my identity.

It is when I am lost that I tend to fall back on my default responses – requiring proof instead of trusting myself.

The hardest part to wrap my brain around is that the requirement I have created isn’t because I do not trust the information or the person sharing it; it’s because I don’t trust myself in responding to the information.

Even with this being true, my vocabulary comes across as if I don’t trust the person I am communicating with.

The more I understand who I am, the more I begin trusting myself. It’s time to be selfish, and time to focus on, and trust the power I hold.

 

Jessica Soroky, CSM

Only 21 years old, Jessica is already a Certified Scrum Master with two years of practice in agile delivery and team leadership. She is also the youngest participant in The Leadership Gift™ Program and its growing worldwide community of leaders and coaches. After five years of non-profit development through Nellie’s Catwalk for Kids, Jessica continues her leadership journey in state government, not-for-profit, and private sector leadership studies.

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Posted in Leadership on 05/14/2014 06:11 am
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