The gold star

A thought I wanted to share. Perhaps not directly related to testing but I think could be helpful in other ways. I’ll pose this as a question:

Do you give yourself a gold star? Or are you dependent on someone else giving it to you?

Some years ago I had finished up some project work and was lamenting to my coworker Chris that my boss – who we had in common – hadn’t noticed my extra work. I was looking for some recognition from my boss. I couldn’t put my finger on what it was I was seeking. But my coworker Chris could. He said to me why do you need the external validation?

He was right, dead right. I needed to be told “good job” by someone.

The problem, I think, with seeking external validation is that it leaves you in the hands of another person. It will never be enough.

It won’t be deep enough. Meaningful enough and it might not happen on the days you need it most.
When you gain the ability to approve of and think well of your own work and worth, you are freed from seeking the gold star from someone else.

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