Assertiveness challenge number 1 for me: speaking up to my mum
Assertiveness and speaking up are so present in my life, that I even dream of my workshops and seminars, especially the part when I say " It is extremely important to speak your mind, tell your needs and ask things in an assertive way. You can get freedom".
I say these things because I believe in them, in a very strong way. And then it comes.. my relationship with my mum. I have enormous trouble uncovering who I really am with her. And I think it might not even depend on her entirely, but on me. On the expectations I grew up with.
My mom is 70, so it is clear that she grew up with the "fixed job" mentality and at the beginning of her marriage with my dad, they had nothing. They had to build everything from scratch, having kids and get fixed jobs. Both her and my dad went to university so they got quite good jobs where you are assured they possibly never ever throw you out. And in Sicily! One can say that they made it. So it is safe to assume that they want the same for me and my sister, and they believe in our capabilities, but they also believe the importance of defending yourself from the evil of the world. The world is a freaking tough place. Get your money from your work, ensure you have your pension fund and carry on. Make sure you have enough. And make sure your boss likes you.
It is thanks to my dad if I always have some cash in my wallet. "You never know!" he says.
Of course nowadays you can pay with your mobile phone, credit cards and what else. But they don't know that! And they never worked abroad, like me in Switzerland, so they don't know that there are always "restructuring actions", that you might change the job every 2 years if you don't like it, that you might be considered a nobody even if you speak 3 languages. There is the modern disease, the modern problem: there is too much, so you are never enough. This everyday struggle to BELONG.
And yet, in this mess, I try to make my new company "Einzelfirma" work, every day a bit. So today I told her something, for the first time: "I know you might have the expectation that I go back to a fixed job in a company, and this might either happen part-time or never happen. So, please prepare yourself: you might not be able to tell I have a prestigious fixed job". I have no idea where I took the courage from. I guess I was just being honest, and I was not litigious or anything. It is because she asked me how things were with "my project. Because she still does not see FindYourWay as a business. Clearly because of the ups and downs of having an activity like mine. It is more like a dream, in her view. And I want to see the dream come true. But how can I make it true if I cannot even tell my mum that I want to go for freelance as a permanent status?
So that was my first step :)
I was always the "A" student, the one that studied more and wanted to do something special, and I know in my world I am making a difference, and yet it was hard to admit to myself that this A student should basically tell her mother: I might not be successful, I might hit the wall and go back to corporate- BUT I BELIEVE IN MY contribution and at least I am trying. I guess that was the translation of my words.
Speak up about what you believe in, even if it means letting go of your former "A" student.