The Loyalty Card

I learned something about myself today that I long suspected.

I value loyalty.

I love that value in my friends, I appreciate it with aquaintaces, I expect it from family (family does not just mean blood ties). What I am happy about is I know without a shadow of doubt, I am loyal. BUT…..

Did you expect THAT coming? I am loyal to a point. I must respect you, I must share similar values (hopefully the same ones) or the loyalty card just won’t fly. You would know I am loyal to you if the following were to happen:

  1. I invite you to my home. I will not expose my children to people I do not trust. If I trust you, you will find a faithful loyal friend in me.
  2. I will stand between you and someone who is verbally or physically attacking you. This happened with my aunt. My cousin started teasing her/bad-mouthing her to her face. I stepped in and let’s just say, I would defend her to the death.
  3. I will support you in whatever you choose to do. I will share my opinion, but in the end, it is your decision and I support you.

I had a job interview today. I am not positive, but I am fairly certain they will offer me a job. I will decline if they do. I was asked some questions and I found my loyalty to my place of work rise up inside me and I felt I needed to defend the amazing work we do. Quite frankly, we are a leader in our city with the work we do and there are other’s who do not want to collaborate with us. That is fine, but I felt I was being grilled by the SS to give up secrets. Ummm I don’t think so. It was at that moment I knew I valued the support of my Supervisor, Leadership and Executive Director more than I wanted a $22 000 pay increase. The defining moment was knowing I would not have the same supportive team that I have grown to love and respect.

I also learned that I am not willing to sacrifice my goals for money. That is huge. I really respect that in others. I am not willing to give up going to University for a job. That degree will bring in more money one day. Meanwhile I know I am making a difference in lives of the clients I serve and the people I work with. My daughter asked me if I was proud of my decision because she was. Well, that just sealed it. I made a choice that showed my daughter it is WHAT you do with your life that matters not how much you make.

Fake IT!

Have you ever faked it? No? Be honest… you have so! We all have.

I was attending a Professional Development today I found to be very thought provoking. The speaker asked this question, Do you think it is okay to let the people you work with know if you are having a bad day? My immediate response was yes, of course it is! We are all human. Then he brought up other another point. If you have been saving all year to fly to New York to attend a Broadway Play starring Julia Roberts. She is a bit crabby and not “feeling it” today. She walks on stage and mumbles her lines. Would you be so understanding? NO WAY! I would be ticked off!I know I am ticked off when Hockey Players don’t bring their “A” game – are you listening Edmonton Oilers?

The same holds true for going to work everyday. I don’t know about you, but I love to be around the people who smile everyday, seem happy to be there, and have a genuine positive attitude about what they do. Being around positive happy behavior, breeds positive, happy behavior! It makes me WANT to come to work. If you are grouchy, never smile, complain about everything, chances are you do not have positive relationship with your co-workers. This would breed negative, gossiping behavior. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to be around someone like that everyday – ALL DAY. The sad reality is, I did work with people like that.

Working in a negative environment made me feel physically ill. I called in sick a lot. I bought copious amount of lottery tickets. Although it is important to like the work you do, it is equally important to like the people you work with.

I do know it is possible to start the seeds of change by bringing the positive attitude to work everyday. You may not feel like it, but before you walk through those doors into your office, slap a smile on your face. Fake it. Be polite! Start speaking in a positive tone. Avoid, “I can’t” and substitute “I’ll try”. Before you know it, you are not faking it, you are living it.

I know this can spill over into your every day life. For example: Someone makes a cup of Folgers coffee and hands you a hot steamy cup. Please do not take a sip and respond with, “What the hell is in my mouth?”. The polite, kind and fake thing to say is “Thank you! How lovely that you brought me a cup of coffee!” You don’t have to finish it. Let it sit on your desk, get busy, then reply “Oh dear, I got so busy I forgot to drink my coffee!”

I’m sure you can apply this “fake it” system into everyday life. It can build relationships! My friend User ( so called because she keeps EVERYTHING until she finds a use for it) always says, “Fake it ’till you make it.” Excellent advice! It works for everything you are shy about, or feel insecure about too! Walking in a neighborhood you shouldn’t be in? Walk with confidence, fake like you are the one suppose to be there. No one will mess with you!  Have to stand up in front of 100s of people to talk about something you are sure will bore them to death? Fake it! Act like they paid to come see you! Before you know it YOU will believe it.

Apparently it works for physical work outs too.

Fake it ’till you make! I am about to jump ahead with both feet taking huge risks to be apart of a new adventure. I’ll let you know how it goes. Meanwhile, I think I will need some of that fakeness tomorrow to get the ball rolling.