There is a lot of stuff written about what successful women do. They all tend to be of the global billionare, big hair variety. But talking to the successful women in my life, they are all basically…. well… regular women. They have businesses or corporate careers, families and relationships. They have highs and lows and have known failure. Some have brushed with sickness, death and tragedy. All have shed tears in happiness, sadness, anger and frustration. But not in the office. They have two dress sizes in their closets. All have learned.
Successful regular women are like us
Not a single one has extreme dietary or exercise habits, weird rituals, compulsions or bizarre beauty routines. No 4.00am boot camps, face masks made out of unpronounceable herbs, or green smoothies created with ingredients of exotic provenance. They don’t chant, although one does admit to standing on her head. Most you would pass in the street without a second glance.
They don’t all do the same things equally, or equally well, or at the same time, in the same situations. They acknowledge the importance of all these qualities and are mindful of what they need to work on. They all have different ideas of success and what it means to them.
So here is what makes these regular women successful.
1. They have high energy
This is probably the one key commonality. But it’s not just about extravert outward-going exuberance. In my group of friends the measured, introspective ones are equally successful. They just pick their fights and don’t sweat the small stuff. They prioritise. They all exercise, but not excessively. They don’t all have super model figures and some admit to needing to lose a few pounds as well.
2.They know what they are good at
Successful women know their successes and own them. They don’t brag, they have no need to. That means they are aware of their strengths and development needs, can delegate and feel unthreatened by advice. They are willing to go outside their comfort zone and will disrupt themselves and have a vision for their future. They learn from mistakes, failure and rejection. They have laser focus, but will willingly confess that they can get distracted and feel conflicted at times. They all have coaches, business advisors, confidantes and mentors. They know when to call on support.
3. They have strong boundaries
Successful women have strong boundaries and can say “no” in an non-confrontational way. They are able to remove themselves from toxic people and environments. They will do so in a measured heart beat. They are all without exception hardworking, but don’t get caught up in “busyness” for its own sake. They set goals and have a plan.
4. They respect time
Successful women are time aware. They value their time, your time and the time of others. They know the cost of time. They also make time when it’s needed. They are generous with both their time and network and will share and mentor.
Whether it’s the balance between speaking and listening, doing and reflecting, working and resting, family and business, they are able to figure out something that works for them and the people in their lives.
6.They take care
They know that to be there for the people in their lives and their responsibilities, they have to look after themselves. They eat healthily, sleep sufficiently and exercise. They take care of their important relationships. They respect colleagues, nurture reports and cherish loved ones.
7.They don’t “faff” about money
Have you ever been in a group of women and the bill arrives? Some women “faff” over every dish, drink and side order. They make Excel spread sheets on napkins and pull out the calculators on their phones. Successful women just pay their share and know instantly where, and if any, inequity lies and factor it in immediately. They know that next time it will work out. They are financially literate and are prepared for the future and unforeseen emergencies. They know their value on the market. They are not underpaid. They invest in their personal and skill development and don’t think they are “fixing” themselves. They think they are competence developing. They put a price tag on their ambition.
8. They don’t “faff’ generally
They make decisions in a thoughtful and measured way and don’t fall into analysis paralysis, especially over things that don’t matter. They are not risk averse, but understand the consequences and potential fall-out of what they do. They like surprises, but not shocks. They prefer to have an idea of what’s around the corner, even if it’s bad news. They articulate solutions not problems and look forwards not backwards. They communicate clearly.
What makes the regular women in your life successful?
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