On winning

Wow, what a week it’s been!

On Thursday I had some local fame when my local paper ran a piece on my award nomination for Emerging SME Business of the Year in the Forward Ladies National Women in Business Awards.

On Friday I celebrated being a finalist in the Midlands regional heats in Nottingham, and my kids came home with TWO well done certificates from school.

And then on Saturday, the first print copies of my new book arrived, hot off the press (take a sneak peek here!)

In case you were wondering, I didn’t win the award, but when two good friends texted within two minutes of each other to tell me that I was a winner in their eyes, I realised that I did indeed feel like a winner!

I felt proud. I had stood up, owned my success and celebrated my achievements. And some two hundred fabulous women (and men!) in business had celebrated with me.

Somehow it didn’t matter that I didn’t win the trophy (or glass bowl in this case) or the title. It mattered that I was proud of what I had achieved.

One of the organisers stopped me as we were leaving, and urged me to apply again next year. It hadn’t occurred to me to do that – but perhaps that’s also the mark of a winner. Someone who gets up and goes again. Because if I think about it, it probably takes more courage to put yourself forward a second time, than the first.

And all of this happened in and amongst a whole load of other things: hard things, messy things, frustrating things, things that feel so far from winning. Because life is like that sometimes. Winning isn’t about perfection. It’s not the absence of tears, fear and failure. It’s owning the success alongside the struggle.

Perhaps winning is more about choosing an attitude, than being given an award. Maybe it’s more about your recognition than anyone else’s.

  • To stop and take a moment, away from ‘what’s next’, to celebrate what’s done – away from the to-do’s to be proud of our ta-da’s…
  • To be proud of what you achieve even when someone else achieves more…
  • To get up and go again, especially when you didn’t get there the first time round…
  • To hold your head up and be proud of your successes – amongst the messiness of things that haven’t worked out and things you’re still working on…

That’s winning.

Next time you see a winner, on stage holding a trophy, on a podium receiving their medal, or anywhere else, remember this: they are not perfect. Their life is not charmed. They struggle too.

Next time you find yourself getting up and going again, celebrating your successes amongst your struggles, choosing to acknowledge your achievements rather than compare them to someone else’s, know this: you’re a winner too.

Here’s to your wins this week – feel free to share them in the comments below.

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