Some days I forget to bring my values with me when I leave the home office. The other day I was talking to a would-be client on the phone and they were getting the best of me. They were getting Delightful Jo; the playful Jo, the fact-based, can-do, superstar version of me. It was a successful conversation. I was able to say what I can do and what I stand for and at the same time create rapport. The would-be client became a client and I hung up the phone. When my husband came home later that evening, he wasn’t greeted by the same Jo. He got the tired me, the short end of the stick.
I write about work/life-balance a lot. Often I touch upon the practical: how to organize your work, how to excite and include your family in your career wins, etc. But today I want to talk about the difference between the career-me and the family-me. Because I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling this way.
The upbeat, positive me is not an alter ego I’ve invented to close deals. It’s not a character I play for work. It’s the real me. It’s the real deal. And bringing my energy with me is a crucial part of my values.
Whether I am coaching a CEO/movie star/a member of parliament or I am frying meatballs for my kids, my values are my values. Why am I a joy to be around for clients, but not my own family?
Pledging to live by my values
I don’t know any parent that doesn’t get short with their kids on a daily basis. I often find myself growling: “I’m about to blow … !” at my children, and they know that that’s their warning. But I am really trying to do better because I want them to enjoy the same kind of treatment that I afford people I work with. There is a level of taking our closest ones for granted.
What you want to do is to polish your values and take them to the next level: You live by them.
So, I pledge that I will up my commitment so that I match how delightful I was being last night with that client that I just got – and then I’ll bring that into every encounter. I’ll do my very best.
How about you?
Read more here: 39 Core Values and How to Live by Them (Psychology Today)