Permission To Be A Diva

Posted on: January 16th, 2013 by Rachel Cosgrove No Comments

It’s a shame to call somebody a diva simply because they work harder than everybody else. –Jennifer Lopez

 As you learn to guard your time, know what your time is worth, watch out for yourself and stick to your boundaries you may get labeled a “diva.” This is not a bad thing. In fact, I give you permission to be a diva.

There was a time when I would do anything for anyone at a moments notice. I wanted everyone to “like” me, and I still do. A few years ago, I had signed a contract with one of the biggest companies I had ever signed with. When they said jump, I would jump. No matter what time of day they called I’d answer or call them right back (many times after 8pm at night or on the weekends), if they sent an email I’d email right back. If they asked me to get on a plane tomorrow and be somewhere, I’d clear my schedule and make it happen. I wanted to please.

As women we are people pleasers. We want people to like us. Many times we will drop our own priorities, plans, commitments to ourselves to please someone else. As you get more and more opportunities in this industry, you will learn that you need to find the inner diva and let her come out to protect you and your time. The fantastic part is that doing this, other people will start to treat you and your time like it is valuable and like the diva that you are. This way you can choose what your time gets used for instead of letting others choose. Remember – You teach people how to treat you.

After years of bending over backwards trying to please everyone and as more and more opportunities were coming my way, along with running the gym, I was being pulled in a million different directions. The turning point was a very powerful phone call that gave me permission to be a diva. This was one of the best things that ever happened to me.

Although I had been doing everything I could to accommodate requests and keep everyone happy, during the phone call I was told, “You are acting like a Diva.” I am? Really? Well, ok then…My response, “You are right. I will proudly own the title of Diva no problem” And I did…

I’ll show you Diva. From that moment forward all scheduling had to go through my assistant including scheduling a call with me. I stopped being accessible at a moment’s notice and took my own time back. I had permission to be a diva and it was the best thing that ever happened to me. You’re right I am a “diva,” proudly. I hung up the phone and stood a little taller feeling pretty good about having permission to be a diva.

The definition of “diva” in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary is “a usually glamorous and successful female performer or personality.” Another definition is “a usually glamorous woman who is preeminent in her field of activity.” I’m ok with that…In Italian it literally means Divine. Some synonyms are Goddess, Princess and Queen.

Shortly after this I signed to do another project with another company but kept the lesson I learned that I now had permission to be a diva. I set boundaries on my time, I made sure I was paid what my time was worth and I was not available on a moment’s notice but instead everything went through my assistant. When I showed up to work I gave 100%. Because I had boundaries on my time I felt I could give even more. Diva’s don’t spread themselves too thin, they guard their time making sure they can always bring their best and the people who hire them and work with them can always expect they will get a professional who brings their best to everything they do.

What happened? The companies I worked with started to respect my time and realize that I am very busy. They were happy to pay me what I am worth and when they did have my time I gave them the absolute best I had and they made sure they used it effectively and treated me like the “diva” that I am.

Oh and take note, you can be a diva and still be approachable, giving, easy to get along with and friendly. A diva doesn’t always have to = bitch. Although, if you read my first book you know I’m ok with BITCH too – Be Inspiring Totally Confident and Hot.

Being a diva simply means your own time is valuable and you will protect it, it also means you know how to ask for what you want. If you don’t ask you won’t get it. Being a diva also means that you are a true professional. Being a diva opens more time to spend with friends, family and volunteering for charity work.You are living your life on your own terms, not someone else’s and will be much happier and easier to get along with because of it.

I grant each of you permission to be a Diva!

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