December Voice 2018

Page 6


| DECember 2018


Guest Perspective insight

Take a look in the mirror A commitment to be better or different A look in the mirror can be a good thing. I don’t mean that last glance at the make-up or the hair before dashing out the door. That is the superficial stuff. I mean something a little deeper than that. I see the look in the mirror as being the opportunity to be thoughtful and introspective about how we approach our personal and professional lives. It is an opportunity to take stock, to evaluate our commitments and make new promises to be better or different. So when you next look into the mirror, ask yourself the following questions: How’s my attitude? Attitude shapes not only what we do, but what we become. People with positive attitudes usually get a lot more out of life than those who don’t have a positive attitude. The glass is half full, not half empty! We can’t control the weather or other people’s actions. We can control our own attitude. How’s yours? If you don’t like the answer, change it. It is that simple. Am I holding up my end of the bargain? As a spouse, a parent and as an employee, you have responsibilities to others. Are you carrying your weight, or is it easier to make excuses and blame others? Sometimes it is tempting to procrastinate or miss your commitments to others and then expect them to be accepting and understanding. If you are upholding your end of the bargain at home and at work, great! If not, then commit to be better and different. Am I shooting straight? There is something inherently intimidating

Rick Bastian about honesty, Blackhawk particularly Bancorp, Inc. when it involves difficult stuff. It requires us to go through the discomfort of revealing ourselves at the same time we may be sharing with someone else something that they may not want to hear. Honesty can also be terribly liberating. How can you be more of a straight shooter with your spouse, kids, coworkers or supervisor?

Am I continuously learning? It is easy to be scared of what we don’t know. Just think about our attitude toward new places, strange foods, a new job or even the computer. We all need to feel competent. Admitting what we don’t know threatens our sense of competence. Learning what we don’t know strengthens our sense of competence. Getting there is not as big a hurdle as it seems. Are you willing to get out of that comfort zone to learn new things? The right attitude, living up to your commitments, honesty and a willingness to learn will make you successful in your personal and professional lives. As I prepare to sail off into the ocean of retirement, I hope my reflection has inspired others to take a look in the mirror and commit to make the changes necessary to be the best they can be. Rick Bastian is chairman of Blackhawk Bancorp, Inc. The views expressed are those of the Bastian’s and do not necessarily represent those of the Rockford Chamber of Commerce.

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