Be a Model Not a Martyr

I couldn’t do a Mother’s Day newsletter this year, it was the first one without my mother, and it was too hard.

But for this Father’s Day, I want to honor her, the dads, and all the parents that step up to do the tough job that is parenthood. I’ve always said that motherhood and management are very similar jobs. A lot of the techniques we use in each are interchangeable. How? You can read in this blog post.

One way that is not in that article is modeling. Our kids watch us, learn from us, and emulate us and so do our employees. When I was telling someone about being a mom and the kind of mom I strive to be, I said to them, “I want to be a model. Not a martyr.

I never thought about it before but when the words came out of my mouth it made perfect sense. And again, it is the same concept we can bring into our professional lives as well.

Sometimes in business and in life we sacrifice and give up under the guise of humble, modest, or generous. Those are great values to infuse into your life. After all, generosity is one of the mindsets of a connector!

But be sure when you make decisions you are making them for the right reasons and that you would want your children to make those same decisions. Understand the cost and implications of what you offer or give up.

Model the behavior for your children. Model the actions for your employees. That includes asking for what you want, raising your hand, and stepping up for opportunity. It also includes saying no and finding other ways for people to be helped. Remember, saying no is being generous with yourself and that is something we can’t forget to do.

Perhaps that is the balance needed so you can feel like a model and not a martyr.

Motherhood has been the most difficult and the most fulfilling and rewarding role in my life. I know that resonates with most parents. This Father’s Day, I wish you all a moment of reflection on how much you’ve done. You manage the projects and details, embrace and support the needs of your family, resolve conflicts, strategize and plan, and celebrate the wins that come with parenting every single day.

Boy — it really does sound the same as being a leader in an organization, except the payment is with hugs and kisses (until they are teenagers at least!)

Happy Father’s Day… to parents everywhere.

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