Women have great potential and talent to offer professionally. Yet at work, many of us keep our skills hidden or untapped. Though people may view us as successful, imaginative powerhouses at work, we still may not be reaching our fullest potential.
So what gets in our way? To a certain degree, we do.
Our success is often inhibited by our susceptibility
to falling into any one of the following traps. It is up to us to make
avoid these pitfalls and claim our power.
TRAP 2. SAYING “I’LL DO IT MYSELF.” For centuries we’ve been taught that nice girls don’t ask for much. We learned that it was costly to speak up and speak out, to express our needs and desires directly. But of course we know that we can get just about any job done, no matter how tedious or onerous. So the challenge that comes with our competence and trying to “do it all,” is to resist becoming martyrs, feeling overworked, resentful and underappreciated. We must remember that martyrdom also robs others of opportunities to take on new projects and tasks. To escape this trap, ask for help. Allow others to contribute to your success and to theirs.
TRAP 3. FEELING THAT WE HAVE NO VOICE AND NO CHOICE. This is when we feel powerless. We tell friends that we are “between a rock and a hard place.” That we are victims of our circumstances, that the commute is life-draining, that our colleagues don’t work as hard as we do, that we weren’t given the new project.... Consider becoming proactive rather than reactive and stop casting yourself as a victim. Pay attention to your complaints, then determine what action you can take to resolve them. This more positive approach is the path to power and freedom.
TRAP 4. WAITING TO BE RESCUED. Many of us believed in Disney fairy tales. “Happily ever after” sounded so promising — surely we could find a shortcut to it! What are you waiting for? The perfect job? The kids to grow up? The economy to improve? That next great promotion? Get a handle on your finances, your relationships and your leadership team and start doing the work you love. Take the reins of your own gilded carriage. Your “prince” has finally arrived. It’s you. Now is the time for you to create the life you’ve been waiting for.
TRAP 5. WANTING PEACE AT ANY PRICE. When we are in
this trap we go out of our way to make sure that no one gets upset.
We withhold honest feedback
or try to make things okay when they aren’t. Pleasing others, regardless
of the cost, holds us back. This peace-at-any-price trap may be the result
of our training as girls: “Be nice. Get along. Avoid conflict.” Go
ahead, rock the boat. Your honesty can help you, as well as others, achieve
TRAP 7. SURVIVING AT ALL COSTS. When we are threatened, angry, anxious
or overwhelmed, we move into survival mode. This trap is a converging
of the other six. When inside, it feels like the walls are collapsing
in on us. Take one action to move from surviving to thriving and you
will create more room for creativity and feel more balanced.
©2008 Caliope Publishing Company
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