Insights, Bravery, Belief. I’m told I bring these attributes, but where did the distillation to those three words and the purpose of #ToInspire come from ?
As I prepared these pages to look to give a representation of myself, I first put in what others have said about me, which can be seen now on the “What Others Say” page.
However, as I sought input and feedback, one said “I would like to hear a little more from YOU of your essence”. Another encouraged me to tell : “..a story you have never told openly to a group of public forum….the journey. What got you to where you are…..”
Ironically, given an attribute of Brave, it does feel brave to tell my own story, and perhaps I sense it lacks humility. Then again, I am often calling out friends, family and clients for “false modesty” and so not accepting acknowledgements and owning who they are, so write I will.
I’ve never spoken of what brought me to where I am other than privately and 1:1, so I hope this gives you a sense of me, my journey, who I am now.
To begin, I’m the fourth generation of first children, first sons, all with the same name. The logo for this website comes from a signet ring with that monogram. Each generation has achieved much and each has wanted their own children to match and then exceed their own achievements.
With that unconscious weight, it took years to gain the insight that I was unconsciously trying to prove myself to multiple generations. For decades this drove me. A close friend wrote about me recently : “the “worst” in Tom came out in a way in that he kept driving himself to prove to others how talented he is, which of course he is, but in so doing, made a point of generally being on transmit mode and rarely in listening mode. It didn’t bring out the best in him and nor did it bring out the best in those around him at times either”.
Listen with the intent to understand, not to reply. I now live by this maxim from Stephen Covey, yet for so much of my life, this need to prove indeed had me on “transmit”. Even to this day, I am not immune to this and acutely aware of this gap.
My friend then went on to say “I believe he realised that what’s important to him is not proving himself to others but instead he understands that nurturing others and enjoying the success of those he helps is what gives him great personal satisfaction.”
What insight from a dear, dear friend. I highlight this in bold as this is me, this is my essence. I love to nurture others.
So, what changed in me ? What helped me shift to simply BEING myself ?
What changed me is my children. It took time, for sure. Time to stop pushing them to prove themselves, yet I like to think that now I am simply present, their “Sherpa” on the journey to their personal mountain top, to help them see their unique brilliance and help them shine.
My light shines when I am present for others. No expertise, nothing to prove, just being there. As a father, being there for my boys is the greatest inspiration for me to grow as a person, and that makes me of greater service to clients and in everything I do.
I would love to share a photo of me and my boys, but for their privacy, just one of me here, on top of the world (the Alps) in early 2017, ready for the next phase of life’s journey !