It seems that there are a lot of stereotypes out there regarding the inner workings of successful women, so I wanted to clear some things up. Here are a few prejudices that I often come across that I could do without.
1. Success is handed to us: People like to think that we were given this slot in life but we are no strangers to hard work. In fact, that's what sets us apart. We didn't sleep our way to the top or shove our cleavage down someones throat for a raise. We climbed the proverbial ladder and built a foundation for success based on goal setting, focus and good old fashion sweat equity. We are smart and savvy, dedicated, fearless and driven beyond belief. It's that simple.
2. We don't need anyone: Kelly Clarkson's "Miss Independent" may be our anthem but don't let that stop you from opening our door or asking how we are doing. Sure we may be capable of building an Ikea dresser all by ourselves but that doesn't mean we want to go it alone. And yes, we may be self reliant to a fault but every woman needs a shoulder to cry on, a helping hand or simply someone who understands us.
3. Cold as ice: Someone once told me that I was like Stone Cold Austin and I'm almost certain that it was not meant as a compliment. From a distance, people often assume that I'm impenetrable. While I might have a tough exterior, I assure you I bleed just like the rest. I do however set boundaries in all sorts of capacities and relationships, I have a firm resolve and I steer away from drama. That said, please don't mistake my strength for indifference and my objectiveness for intolerance. There is a heart of gold underneath this coat of armor.
4. Inflated sense of self: It takes a lot of effort to drown out the noise of a world that wants to put you in a box and tell you that you can't have it all. If it wasn't for my strong sense of self, I might have believed all of the naysayers and tapped out long ago. But there is a difference between being cocky and being self confident. I am the latter. I don't feel entitled to my success nor do I take it for granted. If you refer back to #1, you know I've worked hard for it. So yeah -- there is a level of pride that I bring to all of my endeavors but the ego gets left at home.
5. We don't like other women: I hear this a lot and it's probably one of the saddest fallacies out there. If it weren't for the vast amount of highly successful women in both my personal and professional circles, I would be a lot less inspired. A LOT less. These women are multifaceted, loving, creative, supportive and inclusive. They are wives, sisters, CEOs and executives, yoga instructors, authors and stay at home moms. They come from all walks of life and find "success" in a variety of ways. But what unites these women is their drive to want more, to do more - to be more. It is through this wonderful community of ladies that I have found the strength and the wisdom to keep pursuing my dreams.
When you assume things about people, you miss out on the opportunity to really get to know them. In the wise words of Earl Nightingale, "when you judge others you do not define them, you define yourself."
- The Confessioness