Last week, I was among the honorees of Association Trends’ 2014 Salute to Association Excellence. For those not familiar, the ceremony honors those who have contributed their time and talent to the association community. I was among 7 who received the 2013 Leading Association Lobbyists of the Year award. Normally, I’d try to downplay receiving such a distinguished honor. And then I remembered something my mom said to me recently. “You spent many years with your head in books and at the library. If someone wants to give you an award, don’t say no, say thank you.”
The Leading Association Lobbyists Award means a lot to me for a number of reasons. First, I was nominated for this award. Self nominations are not accepted. Second, I was among a group of association lobbyists doing exceptional work in the community. Finally, I finally saw in myself what others have been telling me for years: you are worthy.
Too often, we see ourselves as unworthy of awards and accolades. A common line uttered at every red carpet for the Academy Awards is “it’s an honor just to be nominated.” That’s true. But let’s be honest with ourselves. If we’re good enough to be nominated, why can’t we accept the truth that we want to be awarded as well? There’s nothing wrong with someone telling you that you’re good at what you do. If we regularly accept bonuses and merit salary increases, then we can also accept a nice piece of crystal from our peers. It’s time to stop convincing ourselves that we are frauds. Instead, start accepting the fact that yes, we are worthy.