Winner

What is a Winner?

Everyone has his or her own way of dealing with stress. Some of us cry, while others do nothing. Some worry that things will not get better and therefore make themselves sick struggling to figure everything out. I must admit I have a hard time with it as well. I have a tendency to say things like, “I am not going to worry about it” or “Everything is going to be ok” and still go home and worry. Have you ever heard anyone say that in order to be successful, one has to surround themselves with successful people and successful thoughts?

Well, I took that advice. I already see myself with very successful, prominent individuals so the problem had to be one thing-my thoughts. I started to ponder how to change my thought process. How was I going to surround myself with successful thoughts? All of a sudden, it came to me. I love reading quotes. Quotes about love, success, faith, fear -you name it. I decided to have these quotes readily available to me for those times when I need a word of encouragement. I place quotes on my desk, in folders on my computer and in my nightstand near my bed. It seems to be working because I find myself doing a lot less worrying than I had before.

Hanging over my desk is my personal definition of success. It is a quote by Booker T. Washington that reads: “Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has had to overcome while trying to succeed”. I find myself reading it throughout my workdays especially on those days when I feel unappreciated. It helps me to not feel sorry for myself. As a society, we focus on positions (on the job) and allow those positions to dictate our worth. Our self-esteem is very low as a whole. Society tells us that without the approval of friends, family or co-workers; we are not winners. That is simply not true.

You are a winner because you said no to drugs or because you decided not to cheat on that killer exam in physics or even because you chose not to lose your temper, not because someone says so. We have to remember that winning and being a winner is defined by us. We decide what a win is and who we choose to label as winners. I must admit, I get excited about being promoted at work or being recognized for a job well done. We all know what it feels like to have others praise us. It feels good. However, choose not to define yourself by accolades, but by how well the job was done. If you are in a situation where you did not receive an award, promotion, etc; think of it this way-they missed an opportunity to acknowledge your great qualities.

You know when you have done a good job and should congratulate yourself often. Treat yourself to a fancy dinner or buy something nice for yourself after the completion of a task. It does not have to be a very difficult task or a huge project. Why not celebrate the small victories? After all, if it were not for the small tasks, the large ones would never be accomplished. Remember that awards do not always mean you will receive praise. In several cases, close friends and co-workers become overwhelmed by jealousy and envy when one (and not all) is recognized. It is because of these feelings; slanderous statements and gossip may begin about you. This may happen not because you do not deserve praise, but because they did not receive acknowledgment too. I know this may be hard to believe, but it is true.

Having the strong will to close your ears to negativity and words of discouragement from friends and loved ones takes a lot of courage. They may be your friends (at least you think they are) and yes it does hurt to know they are not happy for you, but just because they are not happy does not mean you can’t be. You have to find a way to be happy by yourself and with yourself. Just because I say do not listen to those unkind words, does not mean you do not hear them. Of course you will hear them and the words may be hurtful, but that does not mean you should have to apologize for doing a good job nor should it be a reason to give up on what you want. The world is a tough place and no one was promised an easy road. You have to encourage yourself especially when others don’t. Just repeat to yourself, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13). “I am a winner”. It is with these two sentences, you will be able to change your attitude and definition of winning.

Winning is defined as the ability to obtain by work. The definition did not say to obtain by a little work or that winning is automatic. It takes effort and will. Open your mind and give yourself the opportunity to win at all things you venture to achieve.

Shantera L. Chatman is President and CEO of Professional Solutions. She focuses on personal and professional responsibility and accountability. With her dedication to self, excellence and community, Shantera challenges her audiences to grow, connect and fearlessly move forward towards their goals.
For more information on Shantera and her endeavors, please visit http://www.1professionalsolution.com.

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