Some women may prevent themselves from becoming successful leaders by not acknowledging their superpowers and standing in the background without taking initiative. This week on our Live, we discussed how to become an empowered leader with Vicki from WIL Empowered.
What are some challenges women face on their leadership journey?
Lack of confidence:
Women tend to think about what might go wrong instead of how they might succeed which creates barriers against their success. When it comes to job applications, women don’t tend to apply unless they fill every requirement compared to men who may apply regardless of their qualifications. Believing in yourself and knowing your superpowers can boost your confidence and empower you to tackle goals you may have thought you’re unqualified for otherwise.
Facing gender roles:
Women have been told to act in ways that won’t make others around them uncomfortable for decades if not centuries which creates an unconscious bias in the way they act. After being told to not raise their voice and disturb others around them, women may shy away from opportunities that would allow them to take on more prominent leadership roles.
Putting other’s opinions over theirs:
There is a tendency in society to encourage women to behave in ways that will allow them to be liked and to fit in, otherwise known as the nice girl syndrome. However, trying to become who we assume others want us to be might create more problems and discomfort than if we are our authentic selves from the beginning. The need to be liked may lead us to face imposter syndrome and contend with a toxic work environment where you downplay your success and feel afraid to speak up.
How to be a successful leader:
In contrast to having a lack of confidence, adhering to gender roles and putting other’s opinions above yours, being a leader requires you build your confidence by being true to yourself and standing up for what you believe in.
Focus on your strengths:
Focusing on your strengths instead of your weaknesses can significantly impact your confidence and performance. With finding comfort in being your authentic self and owning your superpower, you can take steps towards your goals and form a path of success.
Own your accomplishments:
If you often look down on your accomplishment, you may be downplaying your abilities and increasing your doubts about your capabilities. Be fair in judging and owning your accomplishments to acknowledge your skills and achievements!
Failure is a great opportunity to learn and grow. Perceiving failures as a growth opportunity instead of mistakes can help you feel better about the decisions you are taking and strengthen your skills further towards success.
Find a coach:
Working with a coach who can empower your thought process and decision-making can significantly change the way you perceive your abilities and opportunities. If you are looking for a community of women leaders supporting each other, we recommend you check Vicki’s organization called WIL Empowered.
Engage in a support community:
Knowledge sharing can be extremely beneficial for women leaders to learn from each other and create a community of empowerment. Finding a strong community of female leaders can help women to ask questions, have deep conversations and learn from their peers’ experiences. This can take the form of mentors, sponsors and people who are on the same journey who want to share in your success.
Celebrate the small things:
Women tend to prioritize other people’s needs and wants and often neglect their own. However, it’s important to not take things for granted, focus on your own wants and celebrate the small things. If you feel burnt out from balancing multiple responsibilities at once, even taking a nice walk outside can become a way to prioritize your mental health.
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