A Lot of Geeky, With a Touch of Levity

Before I start on my Composure lesson, I want to talk about me….though I think that is anti-charisma (We’ll figure that out during the charisma lesson). Regardless, I read my last post and realized how incredibly hard I am on myself!

One of the things that I want to be sure of is that I don’t lose Ashley in my journey to executive presence. About 2 years into my tenure at Amazon, I read a blog post from a senior level Amazon executive where one of the executive’s mentors warned that he (the mentee) shouldn’t try to be someone else. He needed to embrace, or as some would put it, “lean into”, his own style.

I will always incorporate levity in conversations. I will always geek out when it comes to technology. I will always be an introvert. I will always second guess myself. And, shocker for those who know me, I may not always know the right words to say at the right time. But, those have been the building blocks of Ashley for the last 37 years, the tide of my personality is too strong to change at this point.

Acceptance of who you are, fundamentally, is how you grow.

Take levity and introversion..that’s how I make connections. Take the geekiness…that’s how I earn credibility. Nothing is “wrong” with me, I simply need to rethink how I capitalize on the core of Ashley, as it relates to executive presence. This process is to baseline who I am and where I need to be in order to move to the next level of my career. I’m committed that Ashley will still be Ashley at the end. Maybe Ashley+?

2 thoughts on “A Lot of Geeky, With a Touch of Levity

  1. This is so great! And makes me think of myself a lot – I think I often feel like I have to be someone I “don’t like” and that doesn’t really feel like me to get things done… particularly in certain environments :). But I like the idea of leaning in to myself and finding a new way of expressing the same thing in my own words… not sure how exactly, but I resonate with this. And I also think you (as we all are) are too hard on yourself! I personally think you’re extremely composed!

    1. This has me thinking. People crave authenticity in those around them. Leaning in to yourself is being authentic. But we have to practice adaptive authenticity. You at Amazon isn’t (shouldn’t be) the same you at Microsoft. Just as you in front of your parents isn’t the same you in front of your boyfriend’s parents. My personal struggle is sometimes what percentage of me do I inject into certain situations.

      Thanks for commenting, Neysha!

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