The true meaning of “success” is subject to your interpretation (hence the air quotes), but across the board, the majority of us will agree that reaching the goals we’ve set for ourselves will require a level of determination and sacrifice that will not always be self-contained.
What am I getting at?
As many of us go on to carry out plans to fellowship with family and friends this holiday season, let’s endeavor to be fully present for those behind the scenes who help make our grind possible – no matter how big or small we perceive their encouragement. From the understanding significant other who doesn’t fault you for canceling date night again for another project or your child who sweetly tells you that they are excited that you can finally make it to one of their Tuesday afternoon school plays - sometimes we get so caught up in the grind that our tunnel vision for our career does not allow us to see and, more importantly, to acknowledge the sacrifice made by those around us in our circle on the day-to-day to make room for our goals. Success can be more than the metrics of your career. In fact, it can be made more fulfilling by expanding your definition of success to be more dynamic by adding the goal of nurturing the healthy, wholesome, and meaningful relationships in your life; thereby aligning your grind with those more sincere, personal values.
In sum, as we close out this year, be more intentional about radiating gratitude and being the best you (while bringing the best out in others)!
A few specifics of how I intend to (and have) cultivated a spirit of gratitude in my circle during the holiday season:
- Share specifics with a family member or friend about the value added to my life by a specific act or moment where they showed up for me this year (this is because oftentimes people know in the moment that you appreciate them, but we don’t always stop and get into the details of why something was particularly impactful and actually sharing that could be heartwarming for them).
- Plan a stress relieving (and/or value adding) activity or routine with a friend or family member (specifically, for me, I intend to reinstate my biweekly workouts with my grandmother after learning that even though she complained big time (Haha!), that she actually enjoyed the time and thought that I gave to go to her home to help her get more active and execute on an hour routine that we could do together).
- Favorite personal journey has been with my close friends when I asked them to create a book club with me in December of 2019 to encourage deeper conversations with one another and having it run enthusiastically strong since then even though we span across four states. We’ve read and discussed 23 books; my top 5 of those we’ve read are:
- The Sun Does Shine: How I Found Life and Freedom on Death Row by Anthony Ray Hinton
- Can’t Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds by David Goggins
- Finding Me: A Memoir by Viola Davis
- Battle Cry: Waging and Winning the War Within by Jason Wilson
- The Perfect Day to Boss Up by Rick Ross
Take real care.
Jermaine A. Brookshire, Jr.