In her bestselling book, Lean In: Woman, Work and the Will to Lead, American entrepreneur and activist Sheryl Sandberg made a lofty declaration. She said, “In the future, there will be no FEMALE leaders; there will just be leaders.”
Sheryl meant it as a compliment of course, to all the audacious women who dare to thrive in a man’s world. Till her prophecy materializes across industries around the globe, here are three potent weekend-activities for us women to become better, sharper, and all around more successful.
I’ve often heard women leaders sharing this one thought that men outshine them at networking. One reason could be that we feel guilty for taking time off from work, especially during a busy week, to merely socialize. Yes, women tend to subconsciously associate networking with socializing. Ironically, we seem to suck at (professional) networking even as we excel at socializing!
So, how to socialize without feeling guilty? Make an effort to create at least one social situation every weekend where you also promote your business.
A monthly dinner with the in-laws can be turned into an additional networking opportunity by getting pa-in-law’s take on your favorite business product. Or encourage your “Super-cook” mom (in-law) to embrace Instagram, so she can post pictures of her favorite recipes. And while she’s at it, perhaps she can also sneak in a picture or two of her badass daughter’s (in-law) equally badass business?
Or when you meet your friends for drinks, update them on your company’s stylish new website, and encourage them to tweet about it. See, easy-peasy!
If you wish to build on your networking skills, start by introducing at least one such opportunity into every weekend. You can start with people who love and care about you and want to support you. In due course, professional networking will become as effortless as socializing.
2. Solo Time
As a woman in business, do you know what your most powerful asset is? Nope, it’s not your business, nor your product, and not even your superior leadership skills. It’s YOU, all of you, every bit of you. So I’d encourage you to sneak in an hour every weekend to focus on nourishing this lone yet whole part of YOU.
For instance, if you wish to cut down on mental clutter, consider meditating. Or if you wish to energize yourself, physically and spiritually, consider hiking. Perhaps you just want to reconnect with your innate nature; then consider gardening.
Or if you wish to simply understand yourself better, consider journaling. Heck, you can even work with water, enjoying an hour at the beach or your community pool. This works especially well if you’re keen to let go of control and develop the art of “simply flowing.”
Here it’s important that the activity you choose is one that you can enjoy in solitude, without feeling lonely because it’s you, spending time with you, to develop and nurture you. That’s a measly 60 minutes out of 10,080 minutes every week. You’re more than worth it!
3. Re-cognize and Re-organize
Look, who said you can’t mix personal with your professional? As women leaders, it’s ultra important that we don’t fracture ourselves into isolated fragments, like “ambitious go-getter” or “single mother” or “supportive spouse” or “fun girl” or “doting aunt,” etc.
Work-life balance is now passé. The new mantra states that you CAN and SHOULD do it all at once, without conflict. (So don’t feel guilty for thinking about your work during weekends.)
Fortunately, there are a few ways to make this easy.
I’ve found that you can work wonders by welcoming Trello on your phone, and Slack and perhaps even Pocket. These are handy digital apps that nicely sit on your phone, so you can seamlessly organize and manage your work, home, hobbies, and more — all with a few clicks on your phone. So no one around you will suspect that you’re “working,” even as you babysit your favorite niece or nephew. Smooth, just like us women! 😉
Use Your Multi-tasking Ability
In closing, let’s acknowledge that we women are blessed with a special gene. It’s called multi-tasking, and it’s what makes us so very multi-dimensional. The tips listed here are to help you overcome pedestrian qualities like boredom, tiredness, and powerlessness, and help you realize your higher potential.
As that multi-faceted model/ actress/ singer/ producer and woman extraordinaire Catherine Deneuve stated, “Men are good, but women are MAGIC!” Hey there you sister from another mister, we better believe it!
About the Author
Sweta Dutta is a committed blogger, an avid traveler, and the founder of Startuper, a unique venture that is committed to celebrating startup stories. Being a woman entrepreneur herself, she is a ferocious advocate for women in business and works with B2B and B2C enterprises to capture, articulate, and showcase the latest entrepreneurship trends and stories.