These past two weeks have been a revealing journey for me around humanity, imperfection and power. I am in the process of launching a new course for women and power and Murphy’s Law paid me a stubborn visit again, and again and again. The problems began at the outset of promoting this course. The first e-mail went out with several mistakes. When I realized this, I felt a rush of shame for having my first communication about the course being imperfect. a flash of anger at my virtual assistant for not catching the mistakes, and disappointment at myself for not being more diligent. Deep breath, reboot.
The second e-blast went out with the subject line Transitioning Through Divorce. What? Totally wrong topic, Ugh. Strike two. Now there’s frustration and anger, a little stronger this time. Okay third time’s a charm– but let’s be sure. So, I tell my assistant we need to send an apology e-mail and ask her to send me the draft before sending it out. I reiterate the importance of her to waiting for my approval before sending anything out. And then, the third e-blast goes out–without my approval. Was there another mistake? Of course there was—because Murphy’s Law was in full force by this time☺.
What’s the point of me sharing all this? Well, the e-blast I’ve been talking about is about a course I’m offering Owning Your Power (Owning Your Power–Changing a Culture) and this experience triggered many of the power busters I see so many women come up against in the small bumps like this one as well as the larger issues like sexual harassment, poor treatment etc.
Here are some of the areas I had to work within myself:
1. Thoughts of pleasing: I was very aware of not wanting the assistant’s boss to think I was a bitch or too demanding or [fill in the blank].
2. Stay grounded not reactive: I teach about a Grounded Powerful Strength all the time–and I needed to practice what I preach. After asking for a test draft several times and not once having it done, I was angry. I wanted to let the assistant have it. I had to work to follow my own advice to get grounded and take a step back before I fired off a mean e-mail (even though I really wanted to fire off a mean e-mail).
3. Having my back: I knew these repetitive mistakes were not okay, however I had to get clear on what the hell I wanted going forward. Did I just want to vent? Did I want an apology? Did I want this assistant no longer working on my business? Did I not want to pay for her mistakes financially? What exactly did I want? Once I got clear about what I wanted, I then had to state those requests clearly, directly and respectfully. If I didn’t get what I asked for I would have to set a limit and follow through with that limit. Honestly, I did some of this well and some of it not so great. I was calm and respectful yet spent more time than I would’ve liked on venting. I’ll chalk this up to another learning experience (they’re multiplying I know) :-).
4. Accepting my imperfection: One mistake—okay. Two mistakes—not good. Three mistakes—what’s wrong with me? After every e-blast had a mistake in it, I had to really work to hold myself in warm regard and not beat myself up. I also had to hold myself accountable. Although that wasn’t easy, I felt better after being able to hold myself accountable without berating myself. Years ago, I would not have been able to do that nearly as quickly. Hopefully, years from now I’ll be able to do it in a moment ☺.
Regardless of whether we are talking about our work issues, marriage problems, sexual harassment, equality or [fill in the blank], owning our power, trusting ourselves and having our back is not an easy feat. Too often I see women silence, over-accommodate, blame themselves, blow up, sabotage or settle rather than stand up and have their back in a healthy way. I see women shrink, blow up, please, accommodate, rage and settle far too often. However, the time is now for all of us to mindfully step into our lives and world differently—with nuance, strength, confidence and power. If we hope to make a cultural shift around women, equality and safety, we have to dare to look at how we handle the obstacles that come our way–from the minor ones to the major ones.
Join me in exploring how to powerfully step into the world with strength, confidence and self-leadership. Go here to read more about the course and to join us! https://lisamerlobooth.com/straight-talk-for-women-owning-your-power/