Having been a comedian/entertainer for over 30 years, I can tell you that there is always an element of truth in any joke. And when it comes to your image – how others view you – what “funny little jokes” do people say about you?
Have you heard your friends say, “Oh, you know Debby, she’s always upset about something” or “Well, Steve, we knew that you’d be late” or “Christy, you’re so negative; you’re such a little worry wart, but I still love you.” Many times, you will laughingly agree and say something like, “Yep, that’s me…that’s just who I am!”
Trust me, no one will argue with you, because that IS how they feel about you. While they make their comments with a little laughter in their voice, the laugh is on you.
And while we can’t be everything to all people and we should let people think what they want about us (blah, blah, blah), are you really happy with your image? I mean, think about what others have jokingly said. Did you ever get by yourself and say, “Am I really like that?” You may feel that you are a good person, a hard worker, and a good and trusted friend who is always fun to be around; however, others may see you as a person who is insecure, who gossips, and is whiny.
Let me repeat: Think of what people have said about you. (By the way, I have done this experiment and it is somewhat disturbing. I have made – and continue to make – the changes that I need to make.) Successful people know that, sometimes, you have to go through some discomfort in the early stages of anything you want to do, in order to, eventually, get what you desire.
Look at these “funny comments” and don’t make excuses as to why these comments aren’t true, because – I’m sorry to have to tell you – they probably are. If you want to change that image, take each “comment” and write down what you could do to change “your” thinking, in order to produce a more “pleasing” result. (It’s not about changing “their” view of you, it’s about changing “your” view of you and your actions. This change only happens when you change how you think, because you must think before you act.)
Analyze the “comment” and get to the root of the condition. For example, regarding the comment, “Well, Steve, we knew that you’d be late,” ask yourself, “Am I always late? Why?” It can’t be because you are busier than other people, because there are a lot of people with more important jobs or more demanding lifestyles than you who are always on time. Do you think being late all the time makes you appear to be more important than others? It doesn’t. It makes you look like you don’t really care, that you’re disorganized, and that you lack time management skills. Is this the image that you desire for yourself? Is this the image that will help you move up the proverbial corporate ladder, gain new clients, keep friends, or make life at home more peaceful?
To change an image, produce thoughts that will focus on the solution and not the excuses to the problem. Using the previous example, you might write an affirmation to yourself such as, “I am conscientious of others. I am more organized with my work and take the time to systemize my thinking and actions, so that I am always on time.” Write this on a few index cards and place them in locations where you will see them throughout the day – on your bathroom mirror at home or your desk at work. Another good place may be in your briefcase, purse or wallet.
Repeat this affirmation over and over again. Through repetition, you are implanting this affirmation into your subconscious mind, and when your subconscious mind reminds you about your affirmation – which it will – listen and do the action required: set an alarm clock, clean up and organize your desk, check your calendar, etc.
Keep the index card and the new image you have to yourself. Don’t tell others what you’re attempting to do – just do it. Let them discover for themselves these changes. Let them create a new image of you in their minds and watch those “funny little jokes” just fade away.
Recognized as a funny motivational keynote speaker who actually has something to say, Bob Garner travels the world speaking on the topics of personal and professional development for Fortune 1000 corporations and leading associations. He is the creator of motivational audio CDs, and the author of books and countless articles that have been published in magazines, industry journals, websites and blogs.
©2015Bob Garner. All Rights Reserved. You may use this article, but you must use the byline and author resource. Contact Bob Garner at http://www.bobgarneronline.com. Image courtesy of imagerymajestic at FreeDigitalPhotos.net