Image via Takmeomeo/Pixabay

Image via Takmeomeo/Pixabay

Only you can control how good, or great, you can be.

I am finding that a number of Millennials, and sometimes their parents, have similar concerns about the environments they are living and learning in:

"My team isn't very good...I’m afraid I won't be noticed."

"We are worried that our daughter isn't paying attention in class because her peers do not bother to pay attention and, in turn, are a distraction."

 The family, the school and the team don't matter. These instances will continue to be a cause for concern for everyone. The response given to each of these concerned individuals is actually quite simple to manage. It does, however, (at least at first glance) work against an ideal ingrained in the individual over time, worked into childhood lessons along with basic manners and respect for others.

Be selectively selfish.

Not selfish. Selectively selfish. 

Don't be selfish for the sake of being egocentric and self-centered. Take a snippet of selfishness, like a page from a book, and realize that being selfish is permissible at times.

Call it self-discipline, motivation, a strong sense of pride... being selectively selfish means being eager to work harder than anyone else to achieve your goals and reach for your definition of success. It's about ignoring everything else and focusing on the end result. 

This is not over-confidence. This is not hubris. Being selectively selfish does not give you the license to be rude, indecent, or to hurt others as a method to better yourself.  

This is all about you. 

Being selectively selfish is choosing to believe: "I'm just doing my own thing." Or, as the popular adage goes: "Do You." 

This mindset will water the seed of self-confidence and accomplishment. Be mentally tough, have class, and be selectively selfish. It's important to maintain respect for others, but don't let that diminish the respect you should have for yourself. Be sure to conduct yourself in such a way that you are able to place yourself in a better position.

In team activities, you may have to face the possibility of collectively losing. Strive to be a great teammate and lead others, but constantly push yourself to be a better player. Only you can control how good, or great, you can be. 

When the chips are down, you need to do your absolute best work. Keep your head held high, play at the best level you can, and work harder than anyone else in the game.  

In academics or at work, do your best to tune out distractions and to focus on yourself and your tasks. You know that paying attention to your teacher or boss is the best way to succeed. If others choose not to listen, study, or participate, then so be it. That is their decision, let them live with it. 

You can only, and should only, worry about yourself. Others won't ask for help because they are worried about meeting a social expectation or fear what their peers think. Do the opposite - raise your hand, ask questions, develop of better understanding that will serve you now and well into the future.

Do you. Live your life. Focus on making the right decisions and doing the right things for you and your life. 

AuthorChad Dorman