Not long ago, I watched a story on “Good Morning America,” about celebrities delivering commencement addresses. The news anchor, Amy Robach, was telling a group of University of Georgia graduates to remember one word: “yes.”
To me, frequent uttering of that one, powerful, positive word, can lead to stress, over-extending yourself, and sacrifice. “Yes” should come with a warning: that its overuse can lead to the Curse of Competency.
I used to be afflicted with that disease. Even my family’s nickname for me, Cee Cee, points to my prior illness. For when you suffer from the Curse of Competency, you also suffer, by logical association, from the Failure to Delegate. You say “yes” because you’re the most efficient, the smartest, the most creative. You say “yes” because if you delegate, it won’t be done as well. In fact, you fear it might not get done at all.
Does anything you’re reading right now resonate? Do you say “yes” to everything because your standards are too high to say “no?” Take the advice of somebody who, but for an occasional relapse or two, has been cured of the Curse.
Highlight this, write it down, have it tattooed on your forearm: LOWER YOUR STANDARDS.
By no means am I suggesting that you should settle for something being below par. Nor am I suggesting that you lower your ethics, your beliefs, or even your good taste. What I am trying to point out is the trade-off: SOMEBODY OTHER THAN YOU WILL DO IT! If you are willing to adjust, if you are willing to be flexible, if you are willing to let go, I guarantee that you will be cured of the Curse.
You’re relaxing already … I can feel it!
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