The Importance of Identifying Concerns
Recently I was asked following question: What issue for today’s working women is of most concern to you? When I started writing my response, I noticed that I had more concerns than I realized. These concerns weren’t for working women but for everyone. Taking the time to identify these concerns has brought them to my consciousness. I am motivated to do what I can to lessen some of the concerns. As we start this New Year, I hope that we work together to lessen our concerns. Best wishes for a year filled with all that brings you joy and peace! Read response below.
What issue for today’s working women is of most concern to you?
My biggest concern for today’s working woman is multifaceted. We live with the belief that self-sacrifice is more honorable than self-care. We have forgotten how to say, “No.” to yet another request. We fill our schedules so tight that we no longer have time for dreaming, playing, laughing, and passion. I am concerned that we have forgotten that we are human “beings” and have instead become human “doings.” We know that we can’t manage time, but we have forgotten the importance of managing our commitments.
I am concerned about our level of our consumerism. We hope that the next item we buy will bring more happiness, but we don’t consider the cost beyond the dollar.
I am concerned that we hide not only our pain and fear but also our joys. We are more afraid of our potential then we are our failure. We diminish our own light, fearful of shinning too brightly. We silence the voice that whispers of our greatness. We settle.
I am concerned that we don’t ask for help. People want to help. They don’t know how to help until they are asked. Being asked for help makes us feel valuable – part of something beyond ourselves. We are afraid of showing our weaknesses or appearing vulnerable. We isolate ourselves from what makes life awesome. I love Joseph Campbell’s quote: “Do not be afraid, follow your bliss, and where there were walls doors will appear.” During an interview Bill Moyer asked him if he believed in “helping hands.” Joseph laughed and said that he had “no choice but to believe.” Following our bliss includes being supported by something bigger than ourselves. Sadly, we are afraid to ask for help.
I am concerned that we don’t seek to mentor or receive mentoring. When we are mentored by someone that we admire, what we see in them is actually in us! Those characteristics that we admire just need to be developed. Being mentored is empowering. When another person is willing to invest in us, we are motivated to go beyond our personal limits. Being a mentor gives us the opportunity to provide wind beneath another’s wings. It also gives up the opportunity to share our wisdom, and our knowledge.
I am saddened that we don’t venture into deeper levels of communication. We see the same faces at meetings and events. Yet, we don’t make time to honor each other with the gift of time and friendship. We don’t know each other stories. There has been a 40% decline in empathy in college students since 2000. Without empathy how can we have healthy communication? Healthy communication leads to inspiration and co-creation. (https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/born-love/201005/shocker-empathy-dropped-40-in-college-students-2000)
I am concerned that we talk a good talk about supporting each other but too often that is not the reality. But when women come together amazing things can happen. Women have an innate ability to put minor differences aside. They work towards fixing bigger problems. We must stop giving power to our differences and realize that we all bleed red. We are all beautiful. We all have a story, and we all have value.
When we come together and use our powers for good injustices such as unequal pay will be a thing of the past. Just as the right for women to vote became a reality. We CAN make our world a better place. I am a believer in the OAR Model: We can change the observer we are, new actions become clear and results improve. Remember what Einstein said about solving problems. “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”
It brings me joy to know that while the concerns I have are significant, where there is breath, there is HOPE.
I hope that we will all look for opportunities each day to show kindness and support. Even the smallest act can make a ripple effect for good beyond our imaginations.
Encourage. Lead. Listen. Love. Mentor. Nominate. Support. What other words might we add?
Stacey Bevill, ACC, NCC, MPM®