I was scared to go to school.
As a child I remember going to school with a pit in my stomach. I thought it was normal to feel this way. Now I realised it wasn’t.
I grew up thinking that mistakes were not allowed. Failing at something was never an option, so unless I could guarantee my success I would never start. And when I started something, I wanted to give it all. I learnt determination in those years.
I became accustomed to learning with a pit in my stomach. I thought: learning is hard, and my teachers have such high standards that I must meet. I must be perfect.
Twice in my life I failed while I was learning, and in public. Those were - to this day - the most humiliating experiences of my life. I felt so ashamed of myself. “How could I fail? I have always been the best student in class… Why am I failing?” To make it worse, I felt the blame on my shoulders - my failures impacted other people who were counting on me.
Learning was terrorising, because failing wasn’t an option.
I grew up thinking that I must be a superhero or I’m worth nothing. I have held such high standards for myself, so high that sometimes my body couldn’t follow anymore. Over the past couple of years, I’ve had monthly migraines. I blamed the weather, the hormones, my diet, etc. I’ve asked doctors how to cure migraines, I’ve checked online. No one could give me an answer. And then one day I understood: maybe the real reason is because I don’t stop working when I’m exhausted. I hold such high expectations of myself - almost unachievable compared to where I am right now - that the pressure is so high and my body fails. When I have my migraines, I can’t see anything, I can’t look at anything, I can’t listen to anything, it hurts so bad that the only thing I do is stay in bed. Sometimes they last 3 days. And I’m unable to do anything during those 3 days. And I used to think “Come on, you lazy person, you have work to do. You can’t stay in bed for 3 days in a row.”
A couple of years ago, I discovered a new type of work: the mindset work. I didn’t know it was a thing. But one of my mentors (multi-million dollar company owner) claimed that she’d spend 80% of her time working her mind and 20% on business strategy. So I thought “let’s give it a shot”. And that literally changed my life. My migraines have almost disappeared.
I learnt that my thoughts create my reality. I was shocked. How do thoughts determine your future? Then I understood the model: my thoughts influence my decisions, which influence the actions I’m making, which create my reality. So yes, according to that model my thoughts create my reality. A whole new world of possibilities opened up. I started working on my mind relentlessly. And that brought me so much success in my personal life and in my career.
I started reading and learning about human psychology and came across this phenomenon called “self-sabotage”. I had never heard the term before. “What???? People willingly sabotage themselves? Who would do such a thing?” It turns out: ME and the other 7.9 billion people on the planet. This is a normal thing to do as a human being.
I learnt about perfectionism and how it keeps you stuck in the mud. I understood that wanting to be perfect is not a thing I want in my life anymore. This was a hard lesson to learn. In order to let go of being perfect, I had to
Say no to people and projects coming in my business from “high level people”
Stop apologising when I asked for what I wanted
Give myself permission to make mistakes
It took me months to learn how to be imperfect, and be ok with that.
Today I give myself permission to mess things up, to say the wrong things, to speak my opinion in front of high level people who are in the position of my ex-teachers, and I strive to do all this with words of wisdom and what my truth is. I’m not here to change anyone’s mind, but I’m here to protect my Truth and my beliefs. Today I’m learning through mistakes. I’ve done so many since I’ve started this journey: I’ve said hurtful things while being well-intentioned to the people I loved the most, I told my opinions instead of tip-toeing around sensitive topics, I’ve said “no, thank you” to partners who approached me for collaborations, I’ve messed up with clients by overwhelming them with information, and so on and so forth.
Today I decide to just be a human being and be imperfect. I feel lighter and better. I’m still learning every day, and I’m still making mistakes every day, and I am determined to never stop making mistakes. That’s the only way to learn. Children learn how to walk by falling down a thousand times. I decided to learn the same way as I learnt how to walk: I fail forward.