Women are finally realizing that connection and collaboration, not competition, are what’s important. We’re saying ‘no’ to the scam of contention and yes to the sisterhood of women out there who are passionate, full of purpose, and driven to change the world. Making meaningful connections with other women can be life-changing, but I’ve found in many conversations that many women don’t know how—or where—to do it.
Connecting with other women to share ideas, work together on projects, and offer support is key, but most of us are so busy and overwhelmed that we just don’t make new connections a priority. It’s not always natural or easy, so we really have to be deliberately purposeful about it. It’s important to remember the benefits of connecting with other women so we owe it to ourselves—and each other—to make it happen.
To get started it’s a good idea to aim for a mix of online and face-to-face connections. Sure, it’s easy to send an email message or follow someone on social media, but it’s no substitute for real-world human interaction. If you’re burning up social media, consider taking an online contact offline, and if you’re proudly ‘old school’ and are neglecting your social media presence, dive in because you really need a foot in both worlds.
It’s also a great idea to join a group that interests you and makes it a priority because it’s important to get together with other women who share a common interest. And speaking of interests, look for ways to get involved in a philanthropic cause that speaks to your heart. Throughout history, women’s organized efforts have developed hospitals, schools, museums, libraries, and social supports that enrich the civilized life of our communities. Women who care enough about others to volunteer their time, talents, and treasure are the kinds of women you want to meet. They tend to be “other-oriented” and want to make new connections, too. So whether your “cause” is homeless animals, kids with cancer, adult literacy, or clean oceans, get involved.
It’s also a good idea to think about what you need to learn and seek out mentors who can help you. You might reach out to someone who plans conferences and offer to trade services in exchange for the chance to learn and get a foot in the door. It’s also a good idea to give back to women who need your expertise. In other words, don’t just seek out mentors, be a mentor to women who needs your knowledge and experience. It can pay off in unexpected ways. Both the mentor and the mentee benefit from open sharing during the exchange.
And last but not least, if you’re invited, go! When someone invites you to an event or gathering—whether it’s an industry trade show, a party, or a hiking trip—go if you can. Yes, even if you’re tired, out-of-sorts, and feeling blah. Sure, there are always reasons to say no and some of them are good reasons. But overall, life rewards action. Life rewards yes. The more times you say yes, the more connections you will make. The more connections you make, the richer and more creative your life will be.
Remember, connections matter, and making our voices heard, and claiming and using our power is something we can do together. It is through a foundation of strong connections that we can gain the confidence and skills we need to overcome barriers and reach our goals. When women reach out and connect with each other it not only changes their lives, it can help us collectively change the world.
Source: drnancyoreilly.com ~ By: Dr. Nancy O’Reilly ~ Image: Canva Pro