You remember the old phrase “don’t judge a book by its cover,” well that is true in life as well.  Don’t judge someone until you take the time to read their book. 

I know firsthand what this feels like to be judged.  I have a chronic illness, but to look at me, you would never know it.  I have heard all the hurtful comments from, “she does not look sick, too she can’t be chronically ill, just look at her.”  Well, guess what.  I am chronically ill.  I suffer from Fibromyalgia.  This is an illness that so many people still do not understand or even accept, but it is real.

Picture yourself with the worst case of the flu you could have.  So you have pictured it, right? Well, picture having the flu 24/7.  Now how do you feel?  Exactly, that is what myself and many other Fibromyalgia sufferers face daily. 

As a Fibro sufferer, we have episodes of flare-ups, and these can be debilitating.  We each have different areas of our body that our Fibro targets and mine happens to be my legs.  Since you have to use your legs every day, this makes things a bit tough, but it is what it is, and I can’t change it.

I have to be positive even though this is such a negative thing.  Being in excruciating pain will easily push me to the Red Platform, but I can’t do that, if I end up on the Red Platform then I am letting Fibro win.  Just like Ego winning, which I talked about before, this time, Fibro would win.

I have accepted the fact that every few months or every few years something is going to change.  I know that some foods I was able to eat before, I probably won’t be able to eat again.  I know an activity I used to do before, I may not be able to do again.  I accept that.  I know it is what it is.  What I won’t do is let it dictate my life.  I won’t let it sway me towards the Red Platform. 

In my professional life, I can also be judged before my book has been read.  A lot of my job requires confidentiality.  Sometimes I may not appear to be approachable, but that is not me as a person. 

We often judge people based on their professional position rather than who they are.  It does not matter what their title is; that is just a title.  What matters is who they are as a person.  How can you decide who a person is based on their title and the company or person they work for?  You can’t.

When you take extra time to stop and talk to that person, you may be amazed to find out who they are.  I will never forget when someone came to chat with me.  They found out that my husband and I had a Harley Davidson, and they about fell over.  They had this picture of me as this uptight professional person who would never do anything like that.

Another time when I was out of the country for work, we decided to invite everyone over to our home for a cookout.  We had put in long hours and had been away from home for several weeks.  One of the people we invited approached one of my colleagues and asked what he should wear and what he should bring.  He wanted to know if he should wear a suit.  My colleague said, “Heck no you don’t know Aimee very well.”  He assumed because I was the owner’s assistant that I was always business professional.  My colleague told him that I was his assistant, but that didn’t mean I wasn’t laid back.

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Aimee Reese is passionate about administration and understands that behind every successful, high performing executive, there is a motivated, competent, efficient assistant.  Aimee has trained and managed many assistants over her career in a fast-paced environment and is passionate about sharing her experience and helping others achieve their potential. Aimee is the founder of The Green Platform Assistant where she believes “In order for you to grow you have to start with knowing who you are.”   Aimee lives in Kentucky with her husband Eric and two children. 

Contact Aimee: aimee@thegreenplatformassistant.com