We are in awe of the world's most accomplished. From the outside, they make the extremely difficult look effortless. Looks can be deceiving. One of the greatest illusions is the notion, success comes easy.
Not everyone will have the same opportunities, resources and access afforded to them. However, time is the great equalizer. No matter if you are a billionaire or broke--we all have 24 hours each day.
I'm intrigued by successful, career-minded women who kick-butt in the office while also managing their health, relationships and children. Finding the time to be consistent and productive in every aspect of your life is a challenge but you don't have to tell them this.
Success is predictable and successful women share a few common characteristics that are executed without instruction.
Here are five points you don't need to tell a successful woman and how you can use these proven tips to create predictable personal and professional success.
- Success is not accidental it is intentional - Leading women create a success roadmap based upon a clear vision for their life. They are calculated and intentional about their choices and have counted the cost. I recall the months prior to launching my business, I was intentional about my goals. Although I was single and marriage was on my roadmap, I made the choice to wait. My priority at the time was my business. Years later I got married. When I did, I made the choice to make relationships a priority in my life because I knew my vision for success was not complete without companionship. Write down your vision, goals and expected outcomes. Create a roadmap with milestones and timelines. Realize there will be sacrifice and unexpected surprises along the way. Evaluate your current path, if it is not leading you to your desired destination, it is time to take a detour.
- Never underestimate the power of self-perception - Your biggest barrier isn't how others perceive you but how you see yourself. Statistics say successful, well intentioned women could lose nearly half a million dollars over the course of their career. Why? We underestimate our ability, short-sell our skills and doubt our readiness for the next level. Learn to silence self-doubt and become your own cheerleader--affirming your abilities and self-worth daily. Recognize that what you don't know you can learn along the way but what you have today is more than enough to launch you to your next level.
- Seize the opportunity when you are the only woman in the room--Successful women embrace their authentic value even when they stand alone. They understand the power of diversity and leverage their own emotional intelligence, personality and proven performance to stand out. A key factor in your personal brand is differentiation. Realize your feminine power and unique sensibility is an inherent asset. Look for opportunities where you can stand out and bring skill, expertise and a unique point-of-view. Maximize the moment to make your mark.
- Confidence is a practiced habit not a mystical power--Successful women have mastered how to appear confident when they're scared. Don't be ruled by fear; be fueled by it. Confidence is built with repetition and experience. Be empowered despite its presence. Barbara Corcoran talks about embracing your fears by confronting them. Realize in order to move forward you will have to address what is very uncomfortable. I have adopted the mantra, "I will be comfortable being uncomfortable." This helps me do it while I'm scared and flex my faith muscle in the face of fear. Over time, you will build a new level of confidence that becomes a habit.
- Don't settle for a seat, choose to own the table - My father always taught me, "When life gives you lemons, don't make lemonade, open up a lemonade stand." Shark Tank winner, Mikaila Ulmer learned this lesson early in life. Successful women think ownership first. They recognize their own value as creators, originators and innovators. Operate with an ownership mindset. Don't wait to be invited to the table, recognize problems that need solutions. Own your table and invite others to take a seat to collaborate with you in your vision. According to The 2015 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report, women's business grew by 1.5 times the national average and African American women business-owners are the fastest growing segment. It's time to invest in your own vision and take ownership for your success.