Tips from TV: What is Ruthless Self-Assessment?



You’re probably getting so tired of seeing these posts about George Washington.  Bear with me, though, because what he did is typical of what successful people around the world and throughout the ages have done, and are still doing today.  George Washington did not discover these success principles but it was the History Channel’s storytelling, the experts’ facts, and the vivid re-enactments that made these principles pop out at me.  I want to share my insights with you–I hope they help!

Concerning Washington’s failure in the British army and his subsequent resignation, I’m sure he felt disappointment, anger, and perhaps embarrassment—and he probably even felt humiliated—but he didn’t allow himself to ‘go there’. Instead, he used his unflinching honesty with himself to find a way forward—a way to still achieve his dreams.

Scrupulously honest self-evaluation is fair with the information it uncovers. It doesn’t use the information as a weapon with which to beat yourself up. It doesn’t use the information as an indictment or proof that you aren’t good enough or that you don’t have what it takes to succeed. And it doesn’t conclude that you should give up on yourself.

Ruthlessly honest self-assessment means not giving in to negative thinking about yourself, not thinking that you’re all washed up because of weaknesses, failures, and mistakes. It isn’t punishment because you can’t seem to get your act together or to figure things out.

Being bluntly frank with yourself means feeling the disappointment, dissatisfaction, and even distress, but not sinking into these feelings and allowing them to develop into discouragement, despair, or self-denigration.

Ruthlessly honest self-assessment means admitting where you fell short and then brainstorming what you can do to improve.  It means then taking those ideas and coming up with a plan to become better—to become the person who is successful in the way that you want to be successful.

Ruthless, honest, unflinching reflection means finding a way to go forward in spite of the supposed odds and in spite of what others think or say or do.

Your homework today is to be very frank and candid with yourself about your journey to your dreams. What are you doing—or not doing—that needs to stop or start—change in some way? What weaknesses do you have? How are they getting in the way of you achieving your dreams? What can you do about it?

Brainstorm things that you can do, then do them! Break them into teeny tiny bits and bobs that are easy to fit into your schedule. Then do them!

You can do it, I’m sure of it!

I’m proud of you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,


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