One of my favorite artists was and is James Brown. I fondly remember “Its a Man’s World” playing loudly on my parents record player when the family would get together on Saturday nights in our home in Kentucky during the 1970s. I remember listening, grooving, laughing and yet thinking as a girl … “What does my future hold? Is it truly a man’s world? Can I be anything I want to be? Can I truly have it all? Do I have to wait for some man on a white horse to save me put a crown on my head and say it’s all going to be better?” (Although I am fairly certain that given a cape and a nice crown I could save the world! 🙂)
I learned early that the answer is no. If you want it all, you go make it happen. Women have their place in the world, whether cleaning a room or in the boardroom. No, Mr. Brown, it’s NOT a man’s world it’s OUR WORLD for the taking!
I am proud of the woman I have become. I have learned many lessons from the mentors I have had in my life and from the women such as my mother and grandmother, who always taught me to stand strong and be an example to others. These lessons coupled with a few I have picked up along the way have enabled me to be the best LEADER I can be and make all steps to have all that I want and to support other women who are also coming up through the ranks.
A few lessons I have learned over the years in building my career I’d like to share with you :
- Give yourself permission to move from girlhood to womanhood. It’s OK! Trust me!
- Talk back to the voice inside that sometimes says, “ you can’t do that!” Tell the voice to SHUT UP! Hug yourself tight and say, “I can do it!” Don’t just sit back and wait for life to happen! Make life happen!
- If you can see it, you can achieve it! Visualize yourself as you want to be. Picture yourself in the corner office! Picture yourself on stage accepting the great award! Picture yourself with the man as YOUR secretary rather than you as his! Lol.
- Quit trying to be Perfect! Nothing else need be said except, discover your NICHE and become a master at it!
- Don’t deny the powerful being that you are! It’s OK. You deserve it. Brag a little about it! As Glenda The Good Witch said to Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, “You had the Power All Along!”
- Ask for forgiveness sometimes rather than always asking for permission. As long as you have done your research and you believe in the outcome you are trying to achieve, inform others of your intentions; don’t ask for permission! Respect they need to know but don’t always try to gain the approval to move forward with your action steps. Believe in yourself!
- Admit to having fear, but don’t succumb to fear. I get afraid like everyone else, and I have so many people within USANA, in my community organization, religious organizations and my family depending on me to make the best decision. I had to learn to accept that the only bad decision is making NO decision. Fence sitters don’t have much place in business as a successful woman. That is what is often expected of us. Do the unexpected.
- It’s OK to be tough in business, but let them open your door sometimes! Its OK to be equal to men as a leader, but a little courtesy and a little bling good, too, for a lady! 🙂
- Love yourself — no matter what. As Janis Joplin says: (Besides asking for a Mercedes Benz :)) “Don’t compromise yourself – You are all you’ve got.” This is one of my favorite quotes I live by (also the Mercedes Benz is pretty cool, too!)
- It’s good to be addressed as a lady, as being classy is a must (I’m sure Coco Chanel would agree). However, as a respected leader and businesswoman in the office and in your business, always make sure you are addressed by your name in all communications. Avoid accepting emails addressed to: “Ladies” or “Girls.” Remember, you’ve moved to womanhood!!
Thank you for letting me share a bit of my lessons with you. Remember, “RUN THE WORLD GIRLS!” Well, until we meet again my friends …