My entire life I have been first.
I am the first child by 7 years so I have always done things way before my brother. I was the first child to take to a sport and actually excel at it. I was the first child to graduate from elementary school, high school and post-secondary. I was the first child to move out. Not only am I the first child my parents had, I am also the first grandchild on both sides. For 7 years I got all of the attention.
Once my brother was born you would think that some of those things would change. WRONG. My parents and my grandparents actually gave me more attention BECAUSE I was the oldest. I am the only grandchild who had both sets of grandparents at their graduation. I am the only grandchild that had both of their grandparents attend their recitals.
Through all of this I have learned something …
being first allows you to have unconditional attention.
Something about me you may not know .. I am an attention seeker. I need the conversation to always be about me. Am I proud of that? Nope. But that is always the way I have been. Kirk calls me out on it all the time. Just last weekend he informed me that I had completely averted the attention away from my cousin onto me. The thing is.. I am SO good at it that I, and the people around me, don’t even know I am doing it. But Kirk takes note and thank goodness he does.
My need for attention is so unseemly, yet I seek it everywhere I go. That is why I have a compulsion to be first in every single thing I do. I have unconsciously joined being first and getting attention together so much so that I will only ever do something IF I can be first.
I used to only hang out with people who were way less farther along than me so that I could be first. I could be the smartest, I could be the first one to figure out the problem. That way I would get the most attention. But when I started my personal growth journey I realized I had to only surround myself with people who were equal to or farther along than me.. and that checked my ego HARD. I realized real quick that I wasn’t going to be the centre of attention if I did not accomplish something first. So I strived to be better than the people before me. Move things along quicker. Hit that goal first. But when I realized that wasn’t always possible I wanted to quit, the same way I have done in the past when my ego was challenged, when I could not find a way to get the attention. But I did something I have never done before.. I pushed through. I said no to my ego and kept going even though I was not the one getting the attention. And you know what happened ?! The world didn’t implode! Imagine that!
I have gone through a lot of these epiphanies since becoming an influencer and having a team of like-minded individuals, but not until today have I actually said it out-loud (or in writing I guess) that I have a very strong need to be first and to have all the attention. This is also the first time that I realize I have to change something.
There is one good thing that comes out of my need for attention. I am highly competitive which keeps me going even when everyone around me tells me to stop. But the rest are very unseemly, and I know I need to get control of this.
Logically I know I cannot be first in everything, but my ego actually believes that I can. So that is where I have to start. I have to shut it down. I have to start at the core and work outwards.
If you are constantly looking for attention here is my advice to you:
Figure out why you do it and then hit it from the centre out. It may be hard, but trust me.. always looking for attention is exhausting and not something you want to be known for .