May 31, 2012

Being Awesome

Yesterday I came across this article by Jeff Goins advising people to put aside their excuses and go out there and be awesome.

I loved the article. It puts a lot of my own feelings on the subject of self confidence and goal-setting into a powerful and direct format. It also got me thinking about the importance of being awesome instead of good, successful, or even great.

Now I'm not talking about simply not settling for certain levels of success. I'm talking about how we perceive ourselves.

For many people, at least in Ireland, the first time our efforts are labelled as "good" or "great" is when we are graded on spelling tests in school. They're definitions others apply to us based on how they judge us. And there's nothing really wrong with that. We're judged all through our lives, by people of varying degrees of importance to our goals.

Success, meanwhile, is usually a more personal acknowledgement. If we see the results of our efforts and are pleased with them, we are successful. But still, we often view success as something to be gained so we can compare ourselves to others. We want the flashier car. The bigger office. The nicer suit. The better-selling book.

Awesome, on the other hand, is something altogether different. You rarely, if ever, see someone saying "Yeah, that car is awesome, but that other car is so much more awesome!" It's just not a commonly comparitive term. Awesome is a singular state of being. Once something is awesome, that's all it needs. It stands alone. And once you are awesome, you too will stand alone, and no longer need to compare yourself to others for validation.

The thing is, awesome is so much more than a description. It's a feeling. Compare it to the difference between a woman being told she's attractive, and that same woman feeling sexy. All the clothes, make-up, hairdos, and compliments won't come close to making her feel as good as she feels when she feels sexy. Awesome is the same. It's not something that describes you. It's something you feel inside, something you are.

The best part is, all of us can feel this way. Get a tough chapter finished? That's awesome. Give up smoking? That's awesome. Help out a friend? That's awesome. Acknowledge every victory along the way to reaching your goals. Give yourself time to celebrate every achievement, then move on to the next challenge primed to take it in hand. If you get knocked down, get back up and keep going, and feel awesome for the fact you didn't give up.

Go out there and be awesome.


  1. It's all about confidence, and knowledge of self. Thanks for the reminder, Paul.

    1. Absolutely. If we don't see it in ourselves, how can we expect anyone else to see it?

  2. This whole post made me think of a character called Captain Awesome on the show Chuck (great nerdy show that ran for the past five years or so). He was so named for always talking about how awesome everything was. I loved his optimism.

    1. I love optimism. There's enough bad stuff in the world without me contributing to it.