I made a big mistake yesterday.
I was distracted, busy and should have known better.
It’s not something I’m proud of, but it might help you if I tell you about it.
It was one of those mistakes that you know the moment that you’ve made it and it wasn’t going to be good.
Here’s the story.
If you know anything about me, you’ve noticed I’m curious one and love learning new things. A lot fascinates me and I read widely and (at least think) I have a good understanding of what my capabilities.
Well yesterday while in the kitchen I got myself into a predicament I didn’t know how to get out of quickly and needed help. Books or YouTube University wasn’t going to help either! I needed hands-on assistance and quick!
It was a confectionary catastrophe in the making. Usually I have someone else in the kitchen with me when working with hot sugar solutions. I tell my helper it’s for the fun and camaraderie, which it certainly is! But I have a hidden agenda… My friend is also serving as a “check-in” buddy to keep me on track and stay focused. Hot molten sugar burns are the worst.
So, what did I do?
I love kitchen alchemy… from bread to jams and beautifully scented jellies. I either grow or choose the best of fruit, vegetables and herbs and use “worked upon” recipes from over the years. I particularly love the scent of fragrant fruit and warm sugar as I make a little kitchen magic. It’s a blending of nature and science.
This week I had bought a couple of large trays of the most exquisite, luscious strawberries from a farmer renowned for the best organic fruit. Not cheap, but worth their weight in gold in my book.
Back in my kitchen, I gently poached those beautiful berries in preparation to ladle in oven warmed sugar… until I became distracted.
I accidentally tipped an avalanche of raw sugar over my berries! Disaster.
I poked and prodded but the sugar looked like it had no intention of dissolving before caramelizing. The strawberries were becoming mush. (Think strawberry toffee in the making.)
I had to act quickly and knew I’ll be better off if I ask for help from someone who knows what they’re talking about. I reached for my phone and video called my dear friend who understands sugar chemistry.
He looked at me as though I was daft and suggested that I heat the whole pan in the oven until the sugar gently dissolved around the fruit.
A simple solution I just couldn’t see because I was in the panic of the moment!
Thirty minutes later I had a pan of red sugary liquid dancing with big fat dollops of soft strawberries.
Did it end up as a jam? Nope. Sugar doesn’t work like that. (Who knew? I certainly didn’t).
The result was a fragrant rose petal scented “cordial” which I use for chilled summer champagne cocktails, or with whipped cream over ice cream topped sponge cake with fresh strawberries. Sheer decadence and nothing at all like what I had intended to make.
This happy accident was the result of recognizing my mistake and reaching out to the right person for help. My sweet chemist helped me to turn my lapse of attention into something extraordinary.
What did I learn from all this?
You can take all the courses, read all the books and think know everything, but there does (and will) come a time when asking for help makes all the difference.
For me, my strawberry fiasco story is a reminder of something important:
Asking for guidance from someone more accomplished than yourself offers the best lessons!
My “coaches” for the most part, have become my collaborators in creating a life story that is uniquely mine.
Have you ever noticed that gems of wisdom come to us in many forms if we are open to hearing them and then to being coached?
This is tricky thanks to our egos. You have to be humble enough to learn to step past yourself and ask for that help. Asking for that assistance from someone you admire takes a shift in mindset.
It’s about having the strength to let go of the need to be independent and right. It’s an equal feat of strength to trust someone and share your fears and insecurities.
It’s essential to invest in yourself by learning your weaknesses and committing to turn them into strengths.
So what’s the lesson?
My strawberry fiasco story is a reminder for me to thank the people I have on my team both professionally and personally.
Maybe, I could learn to lean on them just a little more? I constantly fight the urge to do it all, myself. You too will always do much better with help from the right people.
Why is this important?
As a professional coach, I know that you can’t tackle your beliefs and mindsets that are holding you back all by yourself.
Anyone who tells you otherwise is selling you something that doesn’t work.
Success requires an internal mind-shift and the mental/emotional processing that follows. It’s a process. Not a book. Not a course. Not a pill.
I have learned, through experience, that to do better we have to step up into the shoes of the better person we envisage. We do this by modeling others who have better skills than ours. It’s about being the person you want to become… now!
The next step is about finding the right people to be on your Team.
Look for someone who will help to lift you higher and will encourage you to do better when you have become discouraged.
Success comes more quickly and with a whole lot more fun if you have the right people around you. They don’t have to be the best in the world; simply the best for you!
Your team will help you to shine through your strengths and alchemize your weaknesses into something wonderful and often unexpected. (Like my strawberries!)
You can’t know what you don’t know, and we all have such a limited time to live our best life.
Without the people who support me, who I have been able to learn from, I wouldn’t be where I am today.
I know that the quality of the support that they give me, make me far more successful than if I were do go it alone.
Is it the same for you?
PS: If you are interested in working with me, let’s chat over a free call to see if we can collaborate.
PPS: Now if you pop by and visit with me this summer and I serve a champagne and strawberry cocktail, you now know the story behind the concoction. You should also know I reserve my Strawberry elixir for honored guests.