I loved the Great British Bake-Off before Mel and Sue left.
(If you’re outside the UK, you might’ve seen it on Netflix as The Great British Baking Show.)
They made the show special for me – not just because of their gloriously silly puns and double entendres, but because they were so gentle with the contestants.
When Tom feels bad about his chocolate roulade, Mel says “It’s not messy, it’s informal!”
When Ruby sobs and calls herself stupid, Sue says “You’re not stupid, it’s the pressure.”
And my all time favourite…
When Matt panics about his sport-themed fruit cake, Sue says:
“Come on. Don’t let a fondant tennis court be the end of you.”
Imagine if you had a quiet voice like that inside your head, telling you that, actually, you don’t suck, even when it feels like you do now and will forever.
How would that change the next year of your business (and your life?)
Trying hard and not getting the result we want feels like abject failure to most of us.
That’s because we’re worried, deep down, that we’re doing it wrong.
(It = everything.)
So we search for reassurance.
We turn baking the perfect chocolate roulade, or raking in $1,000 in Etsy sales every month, into a way of giving ourselves an A+.
Something that proves we’re doing great and are supposed to be here.
When we don’t meet those standards (for a million possible reasons, many of which aren’t remotely under our control,) we give ourselves an F.
But…not having certain things doesn’t make you less than someone who does.
Does being broke, sad and scared and yet finding the courage to get up, then take a tiny step, then keep walking – does that count for nothing?
Is it failure?
Or is it enormous success and accomplishment?
Listen, you’re not screwing up as much as you think you are.
Because success isn’t accumulating a hoard of pretty trinkets you (or someone else) has decreed “worthy” of praise.
And failure isn’t forever.
Stuff changes, you get smarter and what’s happening today isn’t the end of your story.
You can royally mess up, say the wrong thing, do *everything* wrong and still like yourself.
So when you feel like you’re failing, don’t get hoodwinked into believing a fondant tennis court could possibly be the end of you.
It’s the beginning.
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