It’s REAL easy to forget the hard work and accomplishments in your life. At best, you only remember a fraction of it. So you get down on yourself, develop impostor syndrome, and wonder what the hell you’re actually doing with your life. You compare yourself to others and look for validation in likes and hearts.
But one thing I’ve found to be an incredible gift to yourself (and shot of confidence) is taking some time to reflect on what you’ve accomplished. Here are a few ways I like to do it:
I think it’s super important for everyone to have a website or portfolio. It’s not just for designers, and it’s as much for the benefit of you, as it is anyone else. Block off some time on your calendar to look at what you’ve got and breathe some life into it.
I tend to think of it as an ongoing process so I use the Ramit Sethi technique of setting an IFTTT reminder that emails me to add to my portfolio once a month. I don’t always actually do it, but in the words of Kumar, “sometimes I does it.”
I’ve said this before and apparently, it’s controversial. But resumes are kind of irrelevant. Yeah, I know that people still ask for them and they have some role in helping HR and recruiters find candidates, but as someone who’s recently had to interview and hire a lot of people, the portfolio told me so much more about someone’s ability to tell a story, showcase their work, and demonstrate they had their shit together. That being said, if you can figure out a way to make your resume delight, impress, or complement your portfolio, go for it. It’s still another opportunity to remind yourself of what you’ve accomplished and you don’t have to wait until you’re desperate for a job to do it. Again, think of it as more for you than anyone else.
I remember when LinkedIn was a fucking joke. I mean some of it still is, like endorsements and how people feel obligated to leave congratulatory remarks that are the adult equivalent of scrawling “Have a good summer!” in a yearbook, but I also can’t deny its utility or that I’ve gotten jobs through it before.
Most people’s profiles make me want to cry from boredom though. This is an opportunity to stand out. Don’t use a prim and proper professional profile pic people expect you to use. Tell a story through your bio and leave people eager to meet you. A little mystery and intrigue never go out of style.
One thing I do find sort of nice is the recommendations. It can be a major confidence boost to get recs from people you enjoyed working with and can speak to your best qualities.
For the past three years, I’ve done an annual review to reflect on what I’ve done and what I want to do. I never do everything I set out to do, but I’m convinced that the act of writing stuff down makes it more likely to come to fruition. I like to divide mine into different life sections (career, family, money, creativity, giving, travel, etc) and break those down into some measurable subgoals. I will say that looking at it once a year probably isn’t good enough. So I use IFFFT to send a weekly email that asks me to take a look at what I set out to do and mark my progress along the way. It’s really uplifting to see what you accomplish!
Those are four ways I’ve found that help me, but I’m interested in hearing about any strategies or tactics you find helpful. Tweet us @holidaymatinee.