In an effort to brainwash myself into getting my life together (…been on the #hotmess express lately), I decided I needed to make a list – a super list of qualities that I should try and aspire to be (in my dreams or whatever).
No but really, if there was an ideal kind of awesomeness, what would it look like? In other words, I wanted to put some serious, uninterrupted brainstorming time into what it means to be awesome.
It sounds sort of silly, but when you really think about it, I think it’s sort of a fun topic, right? So today I’m writing all about HOW to be awesome and I 127% fully welcome your feedback, additions, (comic relief), and thoughts on the subject.
After spilling (read:: word-vomited ) all my thoughts on paper on how to best answer this question,- how to be awesome – it made sense to break the awesomeness traits into buckets of sorts – or domains of life. So I’ll be talking about how to be awesome in general, at work, in relationships and to yourself.
How to be awesome in general
Let’s start with the big picture, general stuff, shall we? It only makes sense to start BIG and then go into more detailed areas slash domains of life. Most of these things are pretty general and just straight up simple, easy-to-do actionable tips for being an awesome human. Like I said, I want y’all to get involved – this is for sure an open-ended topic and one that I’d love for YOU to weigh in on!
- Promote positive vibes. Look, complaining is easy. There’s ALWAYS something negative you could say or something to whine about. And odds are, you’ll just be saying what everyone else is already thinking (e.g., it’s really ugly outside today and the weather is super meh). But here’s the thing – negative energy is contagious. Don’t spread that ish, okay? Before speaking, think about it and ask yourself if what you’re saying is really worth putting out there.
- Kill gossip. Avoid gossiping at all costs. Don’t speak negatively about other people. It reflects poorly on you.
- Always tip well. If it was good service, tip well…always.
- Write thank you notes, always. It’s not expected but it shows gratitude and thoughtfulness. Plus, it’s a great opportunity for you to slow down and appreciate what that person did for you. Also, reflecting on it will encourage you to go out of your way for others.
- Take pride in your appearance. Awesome people typically look awesome, am I right? No but really, it makes a difference. And when you look nice, you feel great too! So, wear lipstick and brush that hair yo.
- Be accommodating. We all like to control things and dictate how we spend our time and of course have our preferences. But when you can, try and be flexible and go with the flow. Life’s a mess, stuff happens and things hardly ever go as (perfectly) planned.
- Manage your expectations. Or better yet, make a habit of identifying your expectations. A lot of the time, we have underlying expectations for certain situations, relationships and events in life without even knowing it. It’ll do you (and everyone else) a great service to identify what those are, evaluate them and then do what you can not to put them on others.
- Be an asset. I could go a lot of different directions with this one but let me just give you a simple, actionable example of something you could do to be an asset to those around you:: have a list of restaurants ready to go for the next time someone asks you – “where do you want to go eat?”
- Jam out at any and every opportunity you’ve got. Literally, listen to music that makes you feel alive – whenever you can. Get yourself a bluetooth speaker for your bathroom and listen to loud, fun music while showering and getting ready in the morning. And on that note, make yourself a little go-to happy playlist for when you’re in a funk or having a “meh” day.
- Remember to pause; intentionally take time to think about stuff. Our schedules are full and life happens fast. Without taking the time to think about things, you’ll find yourself years older without much growth or progress and life’s all about moving forward. Keep a journal and reflect on stuff, regularly – it will help you be more intentional with life.
- Learn from your mistakes when you can help it. Don’t harp on them or anything, but definitely take the time to mentally note the error and realize how you can or would respond differently in the future.
- Think less, do more. Your thoughts slash mind is often your own worst enemy. We can sometimes talk ourselves into a paralysis that can really set us back. If you skipped a few days of working out, SO WHAT. Put it behind you and get back in the gym.
- Do less and do it better. And just in general, remember that our brains (and lives) really don’t function well on overload. But really though, there are studies that prove that our brains really struggle when trying to multitask. So simplify your life where you can and minimize your to-do list if possible. Focus on doing less, better. Filter out the good to get the great.
- Stop comparing yourself. But really, quit that shit. Excuse my french ladies or judge me if you will but I feel it’s necessary for emphasis here. The comparison game is stupid, unproductive, and soul-sucking – not to mention a complete drain of energy, creative juice and overall moral. Competition can be healthy but learn when you need to take a step back.
How to be awesome at work
Let’s bring this list to the office, shall we? If you’re still with me, then I’m thrilled to share my next list of tips for being awesome at work or just in your career/occupation in general.
- Start small. Don’t fall victim to the lie that you’ve got to master it on your first try – everyone’s and everything’s got to start somewhere. One step in the right direction can sometimes be just the momentum you need to make the next step, then the next and so on. Or maybe not. But either way, something is better than nothing (even if it’s the wrong something – you learned and benefited either way). Avoid the perfectionism trap
- Be a go-getter. Be someone that takes initiative in all things and areas of life whether that means being the first to do something, make a decision for an indecisive group (aka pick a restaurant), plan a birthday or going away party for a close friend or be the first person to raise their hand and volunteer.
- Show up, on time and with a good attitude, every single day. And give it your all – EVEN when you don’t feel like it. Work your ass off, especially when you’re starting out. Prove yourself to yourself and others.
- Embrace routines and appreciate standardization. Sometimes routines and/or an established workflow can be really helpful in getting things done. I’m a big supporter of doing things in a uniform and standardized way (even when it means a little bit more work or documentation) in order to advance longterm efficiencies. In other words, standardize where you can, streamline what you can and embrace batch process when it makes sense. Maybe I should do a blog post on this topic in the future? Thoughts
- Make mundane things less boring. No doubt, this is a challenge but definitely one worth getting creative with. When it comes to working with other people or just in general honestly, there are always going to be little admin tasks that suck. It’s part of the game. So do what you can to make those things suck less – get creative with it. For instance – try not to procrastinate or let them build up (ahem, #routines).
- Get organized. Yeah, yeah I know this is pretty simple and captain obvious of me. No, but really though y’all. Take this start of the new year to get your ish together. Assess your current situation and figure out how you can be more organized with your daily tasks, to-do list, desk set up or any other ways you can be more organized at work. Did you read my post on how I stay organized at work? I think I’ll write more on this topic in the future, but I included a few of my tips in that post for starters. Take the time to get organized at the end of each day so your morning goes smoothly.
Remember why you started. You decided to major in X for a reason and/or accepted whatever job because you believed in it or thought it would help you get to where you wan to go, right? Don’t forget that. When you can, be intentional about your work and the decisions your make because they’re ultimately shaping where you’re going. Believe in what you do and be purposeful.
Present solutions, not problems. Think about how you can improve a system or your bosses day, and do something off that list each day.
- Give back. Remember that you had to learn things from someone and know that teaching others will always be worth your time. Do you have a mentor? If not, try and find one to meet with every so often and be open to mentoring others when/if they need help.
How to be awesome in relationships
Now let’s talk about being an awesome friend, shall we?
- Continually communicate. Heck, over-communicate if you can – it’s better than not communicating. I promise. Take every opportunity to learn more about how you communicate with others and learn from your interactions. Be receptive to feedback and make sure others know your relationship is a “safe place” for providing that feedback. Understand your communication style and read people’s body language.
- Ask questions and listen before you speak, considering how your tone and words will be received by others. And you guys, DON’T be passive aggressive. UGH, I hate that ish. Just be awkward and say what you really think.
- Anticipate peoples’ needs. Over-deliver with your home team slash close friends
- Say you’re sorry. Don’t hesitate to apologize and own your mistakes
- Be a good room mate. Whether you live with your husband, parents or friends, think about how your actions and “stuff” affects them
- Follow through. Let your yeses be yes and your no’s be no. You want your “word” mean something
- Use your calendar to keep up with important birthdays
- Make fun plans and invite people – they’ll thank you for it
- Be self aware. Know your strengths and weaknesses
- Consider others and their perspective. Put yourself in the other person’s shoes.
- Make someone feel important daily. If you think a positive thought about someone or hear someone talking highly of them, let them know!
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