First I just need to comment on the crazy things you come across when you google “high standards”. While I was doing some inspirational research for this article I came across hideous articles and I really don’t want to link to any of them but let me tell you: most of these terrible articles were on dating advice for men – where they basically defined high standards as the expected exterior beauty of a women or the conformity of one. Where being young and pretty, and a woman’s ability to change according to a man’s preference in behavior was valued more than her intellect, morals, humor and really anything that actually matters. I don’t know what was worse, the content of these articles or the appraisal of them in the comment sections.
Uurk – ok. Lets take a moment and do what Taylor Swift says and Shake It Of.
There, feeling better already. Besides, I also have a voice, and I have this amazing platform to speak my mind. So, lets make sure it counts.
With this rule, I would like to divide high standards into two different things, and two separate posts:
the most important which is the standards you set for yourself, and what that means
and what high standards should mean when applying it to people around you – be it a man or friends
In this post I will be talking about high standards you set for yourself and what that means, and next week we will be talking high standards and relationships.
So, lets start.
What high standards are and how you live by them
I believe that I am a work in progress, that we all are a work in progress. That a big part of life is to learn new things, to improve our understanding of our surroundings and ourselves. Therefore, I also believe it to be important to sit back and reflect over our personal growth. I think that a good way of doing this is to define what it is we admire in people, and see if we hold some or any of those qualities ourselves.
I, for example, admire many of my friends and as I am writing this article I asked my self – what is it that I admire? Well, one friend is an amazingly kind person. She always choses kindness, and even others’ sometimes negative opinions of this never seem to get to her. Other qualities I admire are often kindness, selflessness, courage to show vulnerability; but also having a passion in life, being ambitious, having discipline and never settling.
Now. Having high standards for yourself is not about putting up a list of what you think you “should” do, or what you believe others expect you to be. And I am definitely not here to tell you that you need to feel bad about who you are today –the way magazines do when they tell you that you aren’t good enough if you don’t do anything and everything at the same time. Preferably in a pair of sky high and super expensive Prada shoes.
Instead, I would define high standards as embracing the journey of personal progress and committing to learning and growing by defining:
what qualities in life are important to you
why they are important
and then try to
incorporate them into your life.
An example of what I have made sure to incorporate into my life or the person I am today is the ability to be the same person and show the same amount of interest and respect to people regardless of if I am talking to the cleaner or the president.
I remember, at my first ever internship, how I really disliked when people would switch their attention from talking to me in the lunchroom as soon as the head of department would walk in the door. I guess my colleagues suddenly felt like getting his attention was of higher value to them then to show respect or common decency to an intern. I remember how instead of getting put down by this whole situation, I asked myself what this made me think of them. Which made me realize that I never want to behave like that, or make anyone feel insignificant due to what their job or work title is. Because we are so much more than just our job titles.
So what I am trying to say is that high standards are not about expecting yourself to be skinny, or be a super mom and wife while still having an amazing career. It’s about defining personal qualities that matter to you, that you find admirable, and trying to incorporate them into the person you are.
Next week I will be posting the second part of this article: high standards and relationships
–tell me your stories- I would love to know what high standards are to you and what qualities do you admire in others?
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