I LOVE PERFORMANCE REVIEWS!
…said no one ever.
I hate to be melodramatic, but I would submit to you that it’s especially more difficult on overachieving people-pleasers like myself who are in BigLaw because:
(1) I need an “A+”
(2) I need you to like me, and
(3) BigLaw is highly critical and unforgiving.
But I digress. This isn’t a rant about performance reviews. Rather, it’s a recent revelation that a mentor of mine helped reveal because I have not been self-aware enough to figure out on my own:
I suck at self-promotion.
It was especially apparent when almost all of my reviewing attorneys had no idea that I have a small book of business and brought in two clients (four matters) while I was out on maternity leave, that I have begun developing expertise in a subject matter area, or that I have always fulfilled the recommended pro bono hours [all things associates are supposed to be doing]. And while I wish it didn’t matter, my lack of self-promotion may very likely stunt my career.
The worst part of it is this – even with this knowledge, the thought of exercising #humblebrag makes me feel icky. The thought of sending “FYI emails – I’m awesome emails” makes me want to throw up in my mouth a little bit. Partly because it goes against how I’ve been raised. Partly because I’d like to believe in a system that rewards merit, not politics. Partly because there’s always a part of me that still wonders if I’m good enough… which leads me to another revelation:
I suck at self-affirmation.
Which is why this overachieving people-pleaser probably needs that A+ and needs you to like me….. Womp. Womp.
I hate to admit it, but whether it has been grades, my weight, billable hours or lately, how much breast milk I can produce for Baby O, how I view myself has rightly or wrongly depended on external factors.
In my 35 years, you would have thought that I would have learned by now to measure my self-worth differently…that I would learn to love myself for who I am and not based on what others think or what I can do.
Well, better late than never I guess.
I guess I can always start with a new mantra, Stuart-Smalley-style.
“I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and doggone it, people like me.”