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Friday, October 8, 2010

Your 75 Accomplishments

This is all about YOU! You are an accomplished person. You have done some pretty amazing things in your life. There are individuals who know and respect you. Others who have benefited from your wisdom and/or labor.

You are a valuable member of the community and of society. AND you are in transition. The latter does NOT change the former! However, at times you may lose sight of what you have accomplished – so having a list helps to remind you.

Here's the task: write up a list of 75 of your accomplishments – the things that you are proud of, that are hard-won, that mean something to YOU. And start it NOW! Keep at it – if you are struggling, put the list aside for a while, then come back and add more.

What makes the list? Things you have done professionally, personal accomplishments and even private achievements that may not mean a thing to anyone else -but are meaningful to you.

Why make this list? When you dig deep you learn more about yourself and by writing it down have it at hand when writing resumes, cover letters and preparing for interviews.

When you are feeling blue, pull out your list and review it – reflect on the things that you have achieved – it can change dark gray clouds into bright blue sky in a heartbeat..

When you complete the task, you will have a wonderful feeling of accomplishment and pride – there's your item #76!

Your comments and experiences will help others – please share them below.

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Unknown said...
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Thoughthebrowser said...

Lists of accomplishment - timely subject. At The Marketing Minute, Drew McLelland had a post recommending listing the three reasons your customers buy. Then see if they are on your website. In a time of great change keep your inventory readily available.

Unknown said...

Thanks for your thoughts, Dick.

Individuals rarely assess their achievements and accomplishments - and if they do, it is even rarer to write them down.

Whether in transition, or at the top of your game, digging deep about yourself is enlightening - it is useful IF you share the knowledge.

McLelland makes a great point about a disconnect between knowing key information and conveying that to the customer. Think it would make a difference?

Bill Cusano said...

Jack, at EERITIZ, we help people use StoryTelling techniques to weave their accomplishments and strengths into the networking conversations and interviews. We have found that as few as five stories can bring out over 25 skills and talents that can broaden their scope and help them see new opportunities in their careers and in their lives. Just imagine how many opportunities 75 stories would bring. We're with you fully on this one.

Unknown said...

Bill - thanks for your comments.

Stories are a great way to convey experience, knowledge and character. Digging into yourself is hard work, but is rewarding and is the foundation for the stories.

Unknown said...

Shannon: Thanks for your comment (I'm reposting it below). Your outlook is great - can't wait to hear that you have completed your list!

Shannon Donelson commented on your blog post "Your 75 Accomplishments" on GovLoop - Social Network for Government

This is great! I'm definitely going to go home and work on this. Anything that makes me write down good/positive things in my life always inspires/encourages me when I need it! Thanks for posting!

Unknown said...

Reposting Dr. Timothy Pascoe's comment with my response.

Dr Timothy Pascoe AM • Dear Jack,

I apologise that I've not complied with the rules and made a list of 75 accomplishments. However, I started by trying to identify the most important ones, which I would want to put near the top.

By way of context, I've had a career spanning several decades and some of my business and public roles have been quite senior. And, in some of these, I did quite a reasonable job. They'd make the list - probably in the top ten.

But, in terms of the very top of the list, I settled on the things that relate to my having worked hard (and made progress) at becoming a better human being - in particular as a better life partner and parent. However, these in turn have helped to make me a better contributor and leader on the broader stage.

Technical and external accomplishment can be achieved with intellect, energy and force of character. But, the human ones require humility and openness (to both inner and outer change) as their starting point. And, for me, learning and acting on that has been the hardest work and the greatest achievement.

But, there's still plenty of room for further pogress!

Jack Gates • Dear Timothy:


Accomplishments include things in our professional, academic, and community lives, but some of the very special ones are those 'personal best' achievements that mean so much to us privately, as well as things we do - big & small - that touch and affect others, and make make life just a little bit better or richer or happier as a result.

What falls into these two latter categories probably won't make the news, elicit a marching band, result in a framed certificate, or even be acknowledged to us directly - BUT - they definitely make the list!

I would like to clarify one point - selection of 75 accomplishments is for mass not rank: I just would not know how to properly slot a) turning someone's frown into a smile; b) being appointed President by my employer; c) allowing my son to learn by going beyond his comfort zone; or d) finally playing pick-up basketball games (as a 30+ year-old) without wheezing on the ground wondering where all the oxygen went in the air... no need to rank them - just enjoy them.

Thanks for your comment, your courage to dig deeply, and your insight that achievement who we are.

Unknown said...

My sister Nancy posted an action idea on her Facebook page: write a list of your talents and next to each item write down how you can use that talent to make a positive difference for someone else. Cooking, cleaning, writing, organizing, painting, drawing, singing, teaching etc.. Don't underestimate the value of your talents!

Another way to do this is to read Dick's blogpost and write up your 75 accomplishments. (One of my favorite posts...thank you Dick!).

Unknown said...


Great advice. It's not real until it is written down.

On Facebook, on a notepad, on 3x5 cards - you can make it as public or as private as you choose.

The process of capturing the skills and accomplishments is enlightening.

Thanks, Joe.