Why A Few Reminders Of Your Best Work Can Come In Handy

When you sell advice for your living, you don’t always get physical, tangible ways to see how your work played out.

Sure, you see your clients’ lives transform, you see shifts in behavior, fresh results—you know you’ve had an impact.

But you don’t always get to hold it in your hand.

That’s one of the things I so treasure about each and every book my clients publish (and yes, I have a section of my bookcase dedicated to them that makes me smile EVERY time I look).

The pride in seeing our work together in print is palpable.

It NEVER gets old.

Why am I telling you this?

Because sometimes we all could use tangible reminders of the work we’ve done, the risks we’ve taken, the difference we’ve made.

I keep a glass jar full of brightly colored paper clips (buh-bye boring silver) on my desk that I bought when I started my first company—they are a talisman of the moment I realized I was truly free to make all my own business decisions.

Until it exploded in a cross-country move, the crystal gavel given to me when I was named President of a large industry association always had pride of place.

The book by the Wall Street Journal reporter who profiled my firm (and included our story in it) is in my line of sight.

And it’s not far from the “brag book”—hand-written notes from clients and former team members—I’ll always treasure.

But keeping these reminders close isn’t really about looking back—it’s to remember to be present right now.

Because great advisory work is about being in the moment. It’s when those moments occasionally get challenging that we want to reach for the tangible.

To remind ourselves that brave clients with big dreams breed great work.

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