A very well respected elder of our family is now famous for responding to any drama or crisis that my sister & I had when we were little girls with the phrase "Count your blessings, Dear".
Often the last mental activity that I plan for the day is simply to lay still and count 10 things that went well during the day.
Each thing that happened must be positive.
This can be difficult, especially where there are negative pathways warn in my brain.
However, I persevere and I count 10 blessings that came to me during the day.
Recently I have built upon the 10 blessings to create a book of 'wins'.
These 'wins' are achievements that I have planned for and put into action and received.
I used to crave that my co-workers and managers would notice my win and made a big celebration to show me how good I am.
In previous workplaces, I have known there to be a designated person who you can email your achievement (maybe the award of a prestigious prize or acceptance of an article for publication) and then it is that person's job to create a newsletter for the month that makes up all the good news for our department.
It is a nice idea, don't get me wrong.
However, what I think matters much more than what others think and it is for this reason that the book of wins works so well.
At the moment my book of wins is not that elaborate.
It is a small notebook and one page is given over the one win.
Each win is written up simply in all positive wording.
So, for example, when I won a prestigious research grant I wrote up; "Won prestigious contestable research grant" Previously, I have kept all evidence of wins in a folder.
So, I kept the letter informing us of that research grant in a folder.
However, the purpose of the folder was different.
It was for the purpose of updating my CV.
It wasn't for the purpose of appreciating who I am and how powerful and acceptable I can be.
The reason why I think that the book of wins works is because: 1.
It reminds me that the most important opinion that counts is my own.
It draws my attention to my successful accomplishments in the face of many failures.
It acts as a kind of advertisement for myself.
Some self-help gurus suggest that it would be useful to create a 30 second advertisement for myself and to repeat it daily.
I think that the 30 second self-advertisement certainly works.
However, because the book of wins is a demonstration of tangible achievements is more powerful.
Most importantly, that desire to please other people and to have those people judge me favourably is finally abating as I have come to the realisation that provided I am following my true self, I will be proud of me.