Leader under construction (Tips not to beat yourself)

Dec 18, 2007 by


Men at work, building under construction, infrastructure cannot be used, that’s what the signboard is trying to tell us.

Today, I’d like to talk about disappointments with ourselves.

Does this statement sounds familiar? “I should not do that”, “I have got that experience before, why didn’t I learn”, “why am I so stupid?”, “every thing’s messed up now”, “I should have said no”. It’s what normally happens when we have disappointments.

You made a mistake, you supposed to learn from it, you made promise to yourself not to do it again, but again you do it again!!! How can’t you say that you’re stupid?

You perform your best, putting all your heart, energy, and even money to something, yet things result in ridicule and mockery!!! How can’t you say that you’re lousy?

Facing disappointments, it’s vulnerable for us to let go our dream, first we are no longer confident that we can achieve the goal and second, we’re afraid of further disappointments. Do not ever let go of dream because of disappointments. Possible with other reasons and enough assessment, but never with disappointments.

Facing disappointments, instead of declaring a war against yourself, rebuking and insult yourself for the mistakes you made, let’s try to visualize the dream under-construction signboard when you’re faced with disappointments. For me, it’s “Leader under construction”, for you, try “[your dream] under construction”.

That means…

1. Declaring your dream

In your disappointments, it might be difficult for you to affirm on achieving your dream, instead try declaring your dream, leader under construction means that you have a vision on becoming one, and you’re progressing towards that. It may not be something you have achieved but what we can do now is declaring our dream.

2. Not to be too critical towards yourself

God is still working on you

Joel Osteen

Above is a quote that I listened from Joel Osteen podcast that we’re God’s masterpiece, each of us is wonderfully made, we are not supposed to be so critical against God’s creation. Leader under construction means that you are acknowledging your mistake, but not rebuking yourself for that mistakes.

Marti Laney Olsen in her book, The Introvert Advantage: How to Thrive in an Extrovert World, wrote a very good statement on acknowledging our limitation:

One of the quickest way to accept the absence of something we wish we had-but don’t-is to acknowledge disappointment. Many people want to skip over this step. It’s called denial… We are given feelings to help guide us through life… If you let yourself feel the loss, the sadness will pass. In its place will be appreciation for the energy you do possess.

Marti Olsen Laney, Psy.D.

Two parts that we can learn from what Marti Olsen has written:

  1. I have posted a message before, titled don’t take yourself seriously, where John C. Maxwell mentioned about enjoying your blunder, acknowledging your disappointment doesn’t have to be in a sad way, you can acknowledge it and laugh about it. It’s very hard sometimes, but trust God that He is still working on you, and He’ll guide you through.
  2. Instead of wasting your energy in rebuking yourself for the mistakes you have made, use your energy to learn from your mistake.
    • I have posted an article before, titled write it out where Jonathan Frye from LeadershipJot.com taught me on learning from our failure by writing out the plan if we can repeat the whole scenario.
    • If you don’t know the right way, read some books, ask the experts, devote some time to learn how and what you should do to become a better person.

3. The criticism and mockery that you get is not your mistake

Imagine someone scolding a road/bridge under construction on not being able to hold us passing through it. Or a building of being seen as only pillars without concrete usage. Certainly it’s not the mistake of the constructor, it’s under construction.

Leader under construction means that the mockery and ridicule you got is not the proof that you’re lousy.

Recently I got a “cockroach”, unexpected results from posting my last article on the naive princess (read my previous post to understand what is “cockroach”), it’s a comment in the StumbleUpon in my article, and it sounds like this:

More ****** blogs. god, this is crap.


Frankly, that takes me some time to overcome, is it just me, but I guess it’s just normal. For many of us, when a bad comment happens, it seems to overwrite all the good comments that happen before. Even if it’s only one against many. Somehow we’re easily dragged to be focused on that particular bad comments and blur all the other good comments.

From now on, let us learn not to focus on the ridicule and mockery that happens to us, even more using them to rebuke ourselves. Instead, focus on the good comments, thanks to EarnestParent that gives me a very wonderful comment as written below…

Excellent article! Rarely does someone appreciate their own qualities so well, turning what many perceive as a negative into a positive with strategies anyone can use for their own benefit.

Amy @ EarnestParenting.com

Similarly, let’s take the good things and not the bad things! And let us smile afterwards! Keep on pursuing your dream as it’s leader under construction.

4. We’re committed to our dream

Leader under construction means that we’re committed to fulfill our dream, we should have a will of iron, when facing difficulties and disappointments, don’t give up on our dreams.

Robin Sharma, a leadership guru in his podcast titled How To Develop a Will of Iron, simulating the early part of pursuing our dream the same as rocket launched into the sky, where they have to fight against all the gravitational force. And that includes the disappointments.

In Conclusion

Don’t give up your dream when facing disappointment with yourself. Keep on keeping on, yes we do need to change and grow to achieve our dream, but take time to enjoy the journey, and that includes enjoying our blunders.


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  1. Yoseph A

    Well said Robert!

    I used to find me beating myself for my failure. Which result very bad to my own confidence as a problem solver. Now I have a way to overcome mistake and failure which says.. “Let God.. and Let Go…”
    This will speak forgiveness not to others who hurt me but also forgive myself for my mistake.

  2. Robert A.

    Thanks for the comment, seph!
    Let God and let go.. that’s a very powerful statement…
    thanks for sharing!

  3. Hopefully this is a comment you will like to hear.. You’ve been CPP’d!

  4. Robert A.

    Hi Shira, thanks a lot! =)
    I’ve been waiting for that!


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