I traveled all 7 continents, does this evidence help me advance in my profession? What does this accomplishment mean? A lot! This is evidence of self-mastery. I won’t bore you with what it took to meet this one goal. It was not just time and money. I had to earn this achievement via a series of actions which all required a level of self-mastery.
“Self-mastery is the power to control one's actions, impulses, or emotions.” – Merriam-Webster
Why do we need evidence of self-mastery? It directly relates to our ability to transfer skills. In our careers and our lives, we have a perception of what skills are required to be a good [fill in the blank]. We create a list of all the reasons why we can’t achieve a goal based on the gap between the perceptions of required skills vs. what we can prove. Why focus on your skills when you can prove you have self-mastery?
The key is building up evidence of your self-mastery from your past achievements. Look at a few of the most common questions asked in an interview, for example. How can we provide evidence of your abilities when we don’t have a direct correlation on your resume?
Most people think of leadership as management. That is not correct. Any time you have to influence another, you are exercising leadership skills. Have you belong to a group, club or association? When you were asked to help out on an event or take on a role to support that team, what were you doing? Did you have to influence someone to donate, to give their time, to complete a task, or something else? Give some thought to your experiences in and out of the work environment. When have you successfully influenced another to achieve a goal? What action did you take to succeed? This is evidence of leadership.
Learning new skills
Think about the last new skill you acquired. What are you able to say about the experience? Was it frustrating? Easy? Complex? What else? What did you learn about learning the new skill? Understanding how you learn and recalling your experiences will create a list of examples unique to you. What impulses did you control? This is building the evidence to confidently speak to your learning abilities.
A common request in the interview process is to complete an assignment. What does this tell a perspective employer about you? Knowing the right answer? No, it is how you approach a problem. How you communicate a possible solution and how you are able to handle feedback. They want a demonstration of how you can communicate with one or more individuals.
If you are not asked to complete an assignment, what way are you demonstrating your communication skills? The way you speak to everyone; yes everyone matters. How do you control you emotions? Your choice of words, your ability to listen, your verbal presentation of your thoughts, will all provide evidence of your communication skills.
Yes, there will always be a gap if you look hard enough. The point is our ability to perceive the skills we have are transferable, even if we have to fill in the gap. Reinforce all the experience you have to rise to the challenge, just as you have in the past using self-mastery.
How did you take control over your actions? What impulses were you controlling? How did you manage your emotions? Now, you have evidence of self-mastery. This evidence gives you the confidence to go after your goals.
If you need support, I am here. I would be honored to support you on your journey to gain evidence of your self-mastery. I will be your trusted champion to give you a new perspective. I will hold you accountable to staying the course you have chosen.
Remember when you rise, you raise those around you to be a better version of themselves. Your actions are contagious. Give the gift of your true self to the world.