Are you blocking your own blessing?

Photo shows Jess Wilby stood in flowers

Do you know what social media cliche I hate the most? Humble bragging about ‘exciting emails‘.

Hands up. We’re all guilty of it. It’s not that I’m not happy for people, it’s just that I worry how quick we are to celebrate things before they come to fruition.

Does this feel familiar? The instant feeling of joy when you think about something, only for it to fall through, get pushed under the rug or simply not turn out as you initially expected.

It sucks.

There’s much to be said about speaking things into existence and setting intentions out loud, but patting yourself on the back for receiving the smallest hint of an opportunity is a dangerous game to play. Let me explain…

You’re missing the bigger picture

A couple of months back I attended a job fair at a local university, to help with the hunt for a new intern at work. I was amazed at how talented and headstrong the students were, all totally capable of holding their own in the industry. However, one thing I didn’t anticipate was how one track minded people could be.

A handful of these students had all applied for the same internship at another company. There was only one place available, but all of them were very confident they were getting the spot. Ok, confidence is fine. What I didn’t expect to hear was ‘Well maybe I can call you in a few months when I’ve found out if I’ve got the placement?‘ No. That’s not how it works. You can’t put all your eggs in one basket and the company I’m working for isn’t going to wait around for someone we haven’t even interviewed yet.

Some of the people I met seemed so one track minded on what they thought was going to happen, that they failed to create themselves a back up plan. There was a number of companies there that day, the students weren’t going to get a better chance to introduce themselves and secure an internship.

However, they didn’t see it like this because they were too busy focusing on the main opportunity they were chasing.

Opportunity Vs Execution

When we get an opportunity it’s easy to think ‘Oh my gosh, this is my moment‘ but in actual fact, it’s the execution that counts. It’s really important to stay grounded to ensure you give this chance your all. An opportunity or new idea is only that until you bring it to life and you can only do this if you focus on the end goal, instead of celebrating at the starting line.

I think that some people assume ‘it’s meant to be’ as soon as they receive a hint of hope. I’m sorry to be the party pooper but I honestly believe this leads to bigger disappointment.

Not every opportunity needs a yes. Not every opportunity needs your time. Not every opportunity will work out.

Call me cynical. I probably am. But I’ve been in this place far too many times and I’ve watched far too many people build their hopes up too soon.

‘Who are you to tell people when they can be happy?’

Alright, calm down pal. That’s not what this is about. Getting excited is fine, but staying grounded is also equally as important.

There’s a tone we take when we’re talking about the possibilities, especially on social media. Sometimes it’s not always sheer enthusiasm. It’s self-indulgence. A lot of the time, we’re just trying to keep up. We talk about the projects we’re working on, the people we’ve met, the events we’ve attended; just so we have something to talk about.

This isn’t me being judgemental. Heck, I’m guilty of it too. But it’s going to do us harm in the long run. If we’re wasting our hopes on ‘exciting emails’ only to be ghosted days later, we’re slowly going to chip away at our own happiness. Our feed will be a series of ‘coming soon’ and our friends will start to doubt new projects after seeing old ones fade away.

When a new opportunity or idea comes your way, make moves not statements. I’m not saying you can’t celebrate your own progress. What I’m saying is it’s time to be selective about what you attach your joy to.

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16 Comments

  1. May 27, 2018 / 6:23 pm

    I’m 100% guilty of telling people about opportunities then them falling through I’m definitely going to try and work on this! Great post!

  2. May 28, 2018 / 10:55 am

    I understand, Jess! That’s why I never count my chickens before they hatch. I may tell my partner or a few close friends here and there, but I always try to preface it with “It’s early days, but…” so I definitely get what you mean here!

    Oliver x

  3. May 29, 2018 / 6:49 pm

    Sometimes I think we all sort of stand in the way of ourselves and seeing our full potential. Which is quite sad.

  4. May 29, 2018 / 10:05 pm

    You are right in saying that we are all guilty of self indulgence and not seeing the bigger picture. Sometimes we don’t make a back up plan and yet are confused when things don’t turn out as expected. We need to realize that we should not stand in our way and be open to seeing our full potential but also being open to experiences that weren’t in our initial life plan.

  5. May 30, 2018 / 6:12 am

    I rarely ever get too confident or excited about things until they’ve come to fruitition as I’m very cautious like that, it doesn’t mean inside I can’t be confident but I don’t want others to know incase it falls through. I had this mentality when I was job hunting x

  6. Danielle
    May 30, 2018 / 11:17 am

    If blogging has taught me anything, it’s that about 50% of emails never result in the opportunity happening. There are so many factors at play.

  7. May 30, 2018 / 11:57 am

    This truly is food for thought. I do think so many of us tend to put our eggs in one basket on occasion and are left disappointed by the eventual outcome, having passed other opportunities by because of this. We really do block our own blessing and perhaps we should all be a little more aware of how we are sabotaging ourselves.

  8. May 30, 2018 / 9:25 pm

    Agree! That’s why I choose not to brag anything although I sometimes fail, but I am trying.

  9. May 31, 2018 / 8:01 am

    I find that this grounding is a natural thing that has occurred to me as I age. I refuse to allow myself to get excited about something until the event is actually happening, as life has shown me that the best plans don’t always pan out.

  10. May 31, 2018 / 11:26 am

    I love this post. I am one of those people that dont say anything about anything until I am sure its going to work and its confirmed

  11. May 31, 2018 / 4:37 pm

    I try to keep quiet most of the time. It can be hard especially when you are super excited about something! Although not everything turns out as planned all the time.

  12. May 31, 2018 / 10:09 pm

    Totally agree with this but yes we have all been guilty of it some times excitement takes hold
    Before me null it over in our head but hey no ones perfect

  13. June 1, 2018 / 6:21 pm

    Having been burned in the past I think I’ve learned to curtail my excitement (or being too vocal about it) until something is pretty much done and dusted!

  14. June 1, 2018 / 7:27 pm

    I have stopped getting excited about things until I finally know they are definitely happening and even then I don’t share until I have to

  15. June 2, 2018 / 12:09 am

    I loved this reminder to not block opportunities because of our fears of selfishness. I really need this encouragement today!

  16. June 2, 2018 / 8:09 am

    I never tend to brag about anything or share my excitement online, as I have come to know especially in the blogging world that not everything comes through even though you may have been emailed about it x

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