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“I wanted to tell my manager, “You’re welcome!” and then slam the door in his face!” Asra said.

Tim immediately regretted asking his wife about her day.

“Jerry knew his accounting business was failing when he hired me. I uncovered all the shortcuts his family had been making. I not only got them in shape, but I made sure everyone got through tax season in one piece. Today he calls me in and tells me that no one likes working with me. Are you kidding! What was I supposed to do? Let them go into bankruptcy? He’s got me coming and going,” she wailed.

Asra kept blowing off steam as Tim made dinner. When they finally sat down, it was time for a heart to heart.

“Asra, you have so much to offer. You’re smart and talented. No wonder Jerry hired you to confront the problems he couldn’t. That’s one of the things I love most about you – your courage. You’re never afraid to be honest about what’s really happening. But have you considered that’s part of the problem?

Asra was finally cooling down. “I followed you until the last part. How can being honest be a problem?”

“Not your honesty, your courage. Do you realize this is the third job where you’re the superhero?”

Asra was stunned. “That’s what bugs me. Why does this keep happening? Are you saying you don’t want me to be successful?”

Tim shook his head. “Of course not. I’m just saying that you need to find a team where there are lots of people just like you. A team where you’re not the only one stepping up. Remember our conversation the night before you took this job? Jerry made excuses about how he couldn’t say anything because he worked with family. It was like he was setting you up to be the bad guy. Face it – this company was a fixer-upper from the start.”

Asra had to agree.

Tim continued, “So now you’re surprised that all the people who had trouble 6 months ago are still having trouble? Honey, please. I hope you appreciate the irony,” he said, kissing her on the cheek.

Asra’s story is important for the May series because it illustrates the difference between cosmetic power and Genuine Power.

To the outside world, it looked like Asra was on her way up with better titles and more pay. However, she had developed a bad habit. Subconsciously she believed her worth centered around what she achieved. Constantly chasing the next big “challenge” was the only way to stay powerful. Every promotion came at a terrible price. Each job was more toxic than the last.

It’s time to appreciate who you are and who you’re becoming. Competency and results are important parts of success. However, the depth of your character is what fuels long-term, genuine power. The “what” – whatever we accomplish, whatever our title, or whatever we own – is always temporary. This is the week to demonstrate genuine power from within.