It May Still Be a Man’s World but You Can Succeed as a Woman – Here’s How

As women, we know how long and how hard we’ve struggled to be recognized for who we are and what we can do. Those rights weren’t won easily and the battle is ongoing to this day. As the old Virginia Slims slogan has it, “You’ve come a long way, baby,” but never lose sight of the fact that there’s a long way yet to go. Even though there are a greater number of women in high ranking positions around the world, if you were to do a study, you’d see that men still outnumber us at least 10:1, and that’s a modest estimate.

Even so, don’t let living in a male-dominated society deter you from becoming the high-powered leader or entrepreneur you believe yourself to be. It may still be a man’s world, but you can succeed as a woman if you understand how to play the game. And, make no mistake about it; it is a game of strategy, which you can win!

Control What You Can and Forget the Rest

There is no use wasting your time thinking about things you can’t control. Why waste your energy when you could be focusing on things which you can control? Even though you may feel like you are being discriminated against or not being heard fairly because some men may still think of you as the “weaker sex,” you can’t let those things take your focus off the end-game. Whether you are seeking a high-level corporate position or striking it out on your own as an entrepreneur, let go of the negatives. In other words, you can’t control everything, so why bother?

Don’t Let Obstacles Stand in Your Way

It doesn’t matter if you are a man or a woman, there will always be obstacles in your path. That’s a given in life. Unfortunately, some women are terrified by the prospect because they feel men will see that as a weakness. One woman has addressed this well in a program she developed for women who speak English as a second language. Instead of them being terrified at the thought of trying to communicate in a language not their own, she has developed a program for them entitled Speak Confident English.

That, right there, is the key to overcoming obstacles that will litter your path. Confidence. You know that few obstacles are the mountains you make them out to be, so instead of wallowing in self-pity, get a move on girl! Do something about it. Whether it takes a bulldozer or a good charge of dynamite, you can blast your way through anything in your path if you have the right tools – and you have them, so don’t worry!

Build New Skills

Speaking of confidence, do you remember the last time you aced a course in school or got that promotion on the job because you took the initiative to build new skills or learn new concepts? Building new skillsets is a real confidence booster. Some women fear they do not have the skills necessary to compete in a man’s world, so if you are among their number, do something about it!

Whether you choose to advance your degree to a graduate level or learn to speak English more fluently than those of us who were born and raised here, advancing your skills will undoubtedly make you feel better about yourself. You have mastered yet another skill, which is yet another benefit you bring to the table.

Networking without Gender Bias

You will often hear successful women say that the key to success is to build a network of successful women, especially on social sites. Isn’t this falling into the same gender bias trap that men have been using since the beginning of time? Perhaps it would be to your advantage to build a strong network of professionals within your field without specifically seeking out women. Having men in your network could help you see things from another perspective.

Also, you never know if that one man who has become a strong follower might refer you to the job of your dreams. You ask men not to let gender bias dominate their decisions, so now it’s time to practice what you preach. We all have something to bring to the table, so let them speak!

Work Toward the Greater Good – Social Causes

Although being an activist for social causes looks great on your resumé, that shouldn’t be your motivator for working toward the greater good. Find something you are passionate about and by actively working toward that goal, you will be building confidence in yourself and what you can accomplish. Sometimes, as mentioned above, women simply lack the confidence needed to climb the corporate ladder.

In the process of raising an awareness or soliciting contributions, you will be practicing the fine art of public speaking. Something like this is ideal for those women who are mastering English as a second language at the same time as they are trying to compete against men for jobs or clients. When you feel good about yourself and what you’ve accomplished, the road ahead looks much brighter, doesn’t it?

A Few Last Thoughts on Dominating without Being Domineering

Perhaps one of the biggest challenges women must face when competing in a man’s world is learning how to dominate without being seen as domineering. True strength doesn’t need to be a slap in the face. True strength comes from a place of calm assurance deep within an individual. Use a woman’s approach when competing against men. There is no need to walk into the room with a swagger if you are certain you have what it takes.

You don’t need to be boastful or arrogant in an effort to prove your worthiness. Some women feel they need to put on a false bravado when competing with men, and most times this just comes across as rather ridiculous. If you have what it takes and know it, there’s no need to show it. Let your accomplishments speak for themselves.

Thanks to Carol

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