As we move into a new year, it’s natural to reflect on what you’ve accomplished in the year past, where you’ve succeeded and what you want to work on to ensure you continue to grow in the year to come. This month, our team will be sharing our personal reflections in our weekly blogs. Partially because I want to be able to go back and reference them at the end of next year, and partially because our regular copywriter is on vacation (hope you’re having a great time, Darren!)
2018 has been a massive transformation for me personally and it’s been a time of constant (exponential) growth for GD Commerce. I truly feel like I am a different version of myself than I was when the year began. This year has been hard. I can confidently say I was taken through the wringer on an almost constant basis. With that being said, I was lucky to have the tools I needed to be able to withstand everything we encountered this year.
I’ve had a few tidbits of wisdom that got me through this year.
First the mind, the rest will come. This is an oldie, but a goodie, I think about it constantly. My RIDE instructor, Noah, said it years ago and it rings so true for me. Decide that you want it and go for it. Once your mind figures it out, the rest will fall into place.
You’ve been through challenging things in the past, if you could get through that, you can get through this. I found this to be the most helpful when dealing with the stress of running a business. The truth is, I don’t have everything figured out. Each day I’m pushing myself to do things I haven’t done before and that leads to a whole lot of uncertainty - can you say imposter syndrome? The truth is, whatever position you’re in, you’re meant to be in. You can handle it, you just have to believe in yourself (see: first the mind...).
Hire great people, give them what they need to do their job and then get out of the way. What a difficult but powerful thing to do. I have the immense benefit of being friends with some of the most successful recruiters at Shopify who are always there to support me in my hiring and HR processes. Hiring the right people has been the key to successful business growth for GD Commerce. Finding the right fit is difficult, I'm always on the lookout for powerful additions to our team and they don't always come at the exact perfect time. What I've learned is, when you find them, hire them. Move mountains to make it work if you need to. Then step back and watch them kill it. Support them when they need it, challenge them when they can level up, and give them constant feedback. They'll amaze you with what they can achieve.
Give yourself the grace you would give to others. I think it’s super easy to be hard on yourself. We all have expectations for ourselves. This year, I realized I had high expectations when Anushka mentioned in a group chat that “The Gabby standard is perfection.” That was a hard hit to take. If I expect perfection from others, I must expect it of myself as well. Maybe everyone can benefit from a little bit of grace - myself included.
When you close your eyes, believe that what is have is all you need. It’s easy to get caught up in wanting more. If you want things you don’t have, you’ll never be happy. You’ll keep wanting more. The thing I’ve found the most helpful this year was to start a gratitude list and send five things that you’re happy for each day to your gratitude buddy. Creating a gratitude list is a daily reminder of what you have to be thankful for, because when you reflect on how much you have, you realize that it really is all you need. Shout out to Brook from RIDE for this one.
If you’ve been reading our blogs religiously, you’ll know that 2018 was a big year for us to utilize Simon Sinek’s teachings in Start With Why and Find Your Why. Because of this, I took some time to reflect on my values and live those values. I discovered that the things that are most important to me are honesty, resilience, loyalty, hustle, and spontaneity.
I’m so lucky to live in a beautiful city doing work that I love everyday and living a lifestyle that makes me feel great surrounded by friends and coworkers who empower me to do my best each and every day. This year hasn’t been all sunshine and roses, but at the end of the day (or year), I can truly say that each of the challenges or difficulties that I faced personally or through GD Commerce has put me/us in a better position for success moving forward.
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