As professionals, there are many great days where our business is thriving, our team is working harmoniously, and we end the day feeling content. However, there are also hard days where nothing seems to go our way and we may feel discouraged or undervalued. It’s days like these that require subtle reminders of our value, impact, and success to keep us motivated. That’s why every professional should have a “Me File.”
In short, a “Me File” is an electronic file or a physical collection of professional and personal memories, cards, accomplishments, and notes meant to lift your spirits after a long day, make you smile when you need it most, or bring you back to a time when you felt like you made a difference.
For those unsure where to start, here’s the basics to start compiling your own portfolio of positivity.
What Should Go into a “Me File”?
The short answer is – anything you want! I suggest items like thank you notes, emails of praise from happy clients, recognition from employees or a boss, photos from volunteer work, speeches you’re proud of, and news clippings. For example, since I founded JK Executive Strategies, I have saved every interview thank you note and client testimonial. Any time I have received a note or email that makes me smile or think “I should save this” I head to my filing cabinet to add to my collection.
Don’t neglect to throw in some personal notes and cards as well. The perfect addition to a “Me File” is anything that makes you feel truly appreciated, stirs happy memories that you may have forgotten, and makes you laugh!
Who Should Have a “Me File”?
I genuinely believe that everyone should have a “Me File” to refer to when having a bad day. From intern level to an owner or CEO, every professional has a need for positive reinforcement from time to time. Chances are any person has valuable mementos fit to start their file. If you’re lucky, your File may follow your career from entry level to C-Suite!
Why Should You Keep a “Me File”?
Sometimes, we get so busy that we forget that we genuinely do really great work. A “Me File” helps you to remember that you’ve made a difference and your work has meaning – like a priceless scroll down memory lane to revisit your milestones. When you need a pick-me-up, revisiting your file can be a fun mental break from the stressors of your day.
With as much unpredictability as 2020 brought both professionally and personally, it is a great time to remember the positives of last year and carry them forward into 2021. Maintaining a “Me File” can offer fulfillment and have mental health benefits for those feeling fatigued and frustrated.
Starting the file is the first step. From there- make it your own and it’ll serve you well throughout your professional life.