My phrase for the year is “why not”. Why not go to that gym class? Why not apply to that dream job? Why not start a new business? See, something you might not know about me is that I am an overthinker. Any decision I make goes through a multifaceted screening process in my brain, not once, but a few times. I overthink everything to the point that it cripples me. Leading me to stay in a comfortable yet limiting box, I never take a chance and lean into change. Change actually scares me, quite frankly.
But, I’m trying to change that mindset around by leaning into change, rather than pushing away from it. I’m determined to see the good in the change I am seeking, and approach it with a “why not” attitude, I hope you can join me in this journey and do the same.
Famous author, Travis Bradberry, states, “Influential people are never satisfied with the status quo. They’re the ones who constantly ask, ‘What if?’ and ‘Why not?’. They’re not afraid to challenge conventional wisdom, and they don’t disrupt things for the sake of being disruptive; they do it to make things better.”
This quote, on many levels, describes what I’m wanting to get out of the “why not” mantra this year.
The first level being, I want to be dissatisfied with the status quo, as Bradberry states. I want to notice when I’m being docile this year, when I’m unmotivated this year; I want to notice that I’m inhibiting myself to grow by sticking to the status quo. You see that’s the detriment of not welcoming change, you can’t grow, not only professionally, but personally.
Think about it this way, I would never want to try to sell my first sketch or watercolor piece that I made in my history as an artist. Well, there’s a multitude of reasons why I wouldn’t want to sell those pieces, but mainly I don’t want to because I’ve grown as an artist, so those pieces are no longer my best work. Throughout the years, I’ve learned different techniques and methods to make my work better, more realistic or simply more marketable. If I hadn’t learned these new methods to better my work, I would have been stuck trying to sell work that was, frankly, just not good.
That’s why I want to nearly be fearful of resting in the status quo. If I realize that I am being docile, and not changing or evolving as a professional, something is going wrong, flat out. As a professional, regardless of the field you are in, you need to constantly be looking for the next best thing to create or do so that you’re constantly offering your best work, skills, or whatever within your professional life.
I mean, let’s think about the most iconic movie of my era, High School Musical.
There’s a song within that musical specifically about avoiding the status quo, because it breeds conformity and the opposite of what we want our professional lives (and even personal lives, this song would argue) to represent. Things like uniqueness and authenticity.
A way to make sure that you are avoiding the status quo is to discover your niche, or what makes your brand stands apart from the others. We will be diving into this topic next week, where I will walk you through not only my process of discovering my brand’s niche, but we will also be interviewing a local web designer and freelancer who will be giving his tips and tricks to diversifying yourself in a world that is saturated with all forms of content. So make sure you tune in next week, so you don’t miss out on that awesome conversation!