A couple of years ago, I was invited by the women’s network of nearby engineering and construction conglomerate to deliver a Lunch & Learn workshop about how to double your productivity the feminine way.
While walking through their beautiful, bright offices, I noticed something interesting: there were very few women around. The ratio was about 80% men to only 20% women.
Unsurprisingly for the industry, theirs was a very male-dominated environment.
But you don’t need to work in engineering & construction to find yourself surrounded mostly by masculine models of success. Even the entrepreneurial world is packed with male stars like Sir Richard Branson, Tony Robbins, the late Steve Jobs and so many others.
Unless you’re a nurse, a kindergarten teacher or an HR specialist, I’d be surprised if you can name more than a handful of women who are truly powerful and feminine in your field.
Even those women who make it to the top in male-dominated professions often take-on rather masculine behaviours. In order to compete with men, they often behave like one.
Don’t get me wrong. Competition, hard logic and goal-driven action are incredibly important. But our ability as women to slow down, listen to our intuition and build thoughtful relationships are equally relevant.
Fortunately, a new generation of conscious businesswomen is emerging. And I’m not only talking about the millennials – I see many women in their 40’s and beyond taking a stand for a different approach to business and life.
These women want to be successful on their own terms and build, not only a career, but also a life that they love. Because trust me: if you don’t love your life, there comes a point when you start blaming your career…
I believe that you can be highly successful as a businesswoman without giving-up your femininity and missing-out on a fulfilling family life. But you must be crystal clear about your desires and ensure that you’re getting your core needs met.
When I say core needs, I’m referring to what I call the “4 pillars of feminine high performance”. Loosely based on the principles that I’ve learned from Tony Schwartz, Eben Pagan, Alisa Vitti and Kate Northrup, here they are:
Pillar #1: Physical Sustainability
We must take good care of our bodies to ensure that we have the energy, health and resilience needed to overcome any challenges and achieve our goals. Physical sustainability as a woman comes from alternating between periods of activity and renewal, cleverly syncing our our schedule with our monthly cycle for optimal productivity.
Pillar #2: Emotional Security
We all need to feel appreciated and valued. As women, our longing for connection is perhaps even stronger than it is for men, so it’s important to prioritise our relationships. That said, we have the power to activate positive feelings at will, regardless of who we’re with and what’s going on around us. Emotional security stems from being aware of how we’re feeling at any given moment and intentionally renewing the positive emotions that support heightened levels of performance.
Pillar #3: Mental Self-Expression
We feel fulfilled when we have the freedom to express our skills and talents. Yet, doing so can be challenging in a world of relentless demands and distractions. Mental self-expression as a woman comes from learning to set healthy boundaries and cultivate our capacity to focus.
Pillar #4: Spiritual Significance
Once our basic needs for survival, security and connection have been met, we’re drawn to a search for meaning in our lives. Spiritual significance comes from finding a sense of purpose in who we are and what we do. Feeling significant in the grander scheme of things fuels the focus, passion and perseverance we require for sustained high performance.
As a high performance consultant for women, I help my clients double their productivity by strategically strengthening these four pillars in their lives. If this is something you’d like to explore, click here to learn more