When you love what you do and you are driven by passion, you go all the extra miles needed. You have a vision and you put maximum effort on transforming that vision into a concrete reality. You are willing to learn new skills if needed and you are ready to set fire to the rain. To you, nothing seems probably too impossible.
I believe these are attitudes that most high performers share, and even though they all seem inspiring and positive, they can be very costly for high performers. Based on my most recent reflections and recollection of famous top performers, here are some challenges that high performers may experience:
- as you climb to the top of the mountain, you see yourself more and more lonely
- you may miss important celebrations such as your mom’s 50th birthday
- you rarely have time to follow routines beyond work (e.g. manicure, gym)
- you are often tense, stressed and overworked
- you may accept that your regular mood is based on irritation and grumpiness
- you may start losing patience and become intolerant or even insensitive to people’s insecurities
- you may become so addicted to the fast-paced way of living that it becomes difficult to simply slow down and smell the roses
Now I’m tearful and afraid of becoming the monster I have just described. The line between the positive and negative consequences of high performance seem so fine and easily broken. At one point in time you are simply focused on doing and becoming the best version of yourself. The next time you notice, you may have gone way beyond the healthy boundary of getting things done (e.g. booking a client for when you are supposedly on holidays – yes, I just did it last week… and I’m going to correct it asap!).