Excellence is a Habit
Aristotle famously said, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.” He was a smart guy. I want to explore that idea for few minutes.
We all want to work hard, succeed, be the best versions of ourselves. But too often we get muddled along the way. Why is that? Habits. We are creatures of habits. We learn how to be a certain way in the world through our parents, our schooling, our societies, our culture. And not all of those lessons are helpful.
As adults, we have so many competing priorities in our lives that our brains want to take the easy path. Family, friends, bills, food, housing, the list of trying and mundane things in life that we have to deal with is endless. As they say, Adulting is hard. Adulting is hard even when you are pretty sure you’ll have food at the end of the day and a roof over your head and no one is threatening your safety. It’s even more difficult to manage Adulting when those things are at risk.
So our minds tell us to take a break. Do the easy thing.
But our souls long for more. We want to grow! We want to leave a unique and distinct mark on the world. We want others to know of our accomplishments and take satisfaction in seeing our work make a difference in other people’s lives. Our souls want to be the best versions of us.
So how do we not overwhelm our minds, but feed our souls?
We make doing difficult things small and manageable. Break down a difficult task into small things. And do each one. REPEATEDLY.
Great work lies in the small stuff. Getting through your email. Working with your colleagues on a problem. Being proactive. Asking questions. Using your time wisely. Overtime, these small, but strategic work habits will make you a force in the working world. If you try to do it backwards…tackle the Great Big Problem…without doing the little things (being responsive to coworkers, following up on those bitty tasks, writing reports) you will overwhelm your mind and your soul will suffer.
Being excellent is a habit. One you have to cultivate. We want Invisible to be excellent. That means we all need to be on the path towards excellence.
To help guide Invisible on our journey towards excellence, we are incorporating a weekly check-in, aimed to help us self-assess how our week went. On Fridays, you’ll get a little reminder to do this Check-In. How was your week? What did you do great? What do you need to work on? What are you proud of? What do you wish you could have done better? This is similar to a journaling exercise, but it takes 3min tops!
These check-ins are for you! They won’t count for or against you in your performance reviews; but they will hopefully help paint a narrative of how you are working and growing. You’ll get a compiled copy of all your weekly check-ins when you do feedback with your supervisor. This is so you can help identify strong points and areas for improvements.
If you are consistently tired and frustrated at the end of each week…that’s something we should help you with! If you are feeling awesome each week and feel like you are strongly growing…but your manager see’s something different, we should talk about that too! If your manager things you are doing awesome…but you want MORE…then we can talk about that too.
Let this be a habit-building tool. Let’s all get on the path of excellence, and good habits, together!