Speak Up, Loudly And Often
“The only real valuable thing is intuition.”
~ Albert Einstein
Gut feelings, intuition, subconscious... I can’t tell you how many times I’ve passed on properties that my gut said were amazing. Why would I do that? I tried to tell myself that my experience was limited at the time and I couldn’t justify my gut feelings with data. In hindsight, I should have listened to my gut, persisted until I figured out why something inside me told me to go for it. But intuition isn’t considered to be a valuable asset when performing real estate calculations. I tried to tell myself it was because my gut feelings weren’t mature enough to be trusted at the time. The clear answer to the question “Why do we still not listen to ourselves?” kept coming up as “Because we’ve been trained to be not heard.” This is survival instinct for women that has been passed on to us. The great thing about this day and age that we are fortunate enough to be alive in is, some of us have the opportunity to fight against this instinct, to really listen to ourselves and to achieve excellence. That answer was inspired by a quote I read by Orion Brown, founder of The Black Travel Box that made me look deeper. “Many of us grew up in corporate America or at the very least in male-dominated industries,” said Orion Brown in this article where the title of this blog post comes from. “From that experience, we're often told that boldness doesn't add up to success for women.” she added. That touched something raw inside me.
The survival instinct is what is now failing us. It makes us sell ourselves short, think we cannot do something, not take care of ourselves and let our emotional and physical well being or even financial independence go because we think we will be loved more as flawed, imperfect people so we aren’t challenges. It’s time for us to listen to our own selves and understand the impact of speaking up in our personal, professional and philanthropic lives. This isn’t just an abstract motivational subject, it is an essential skill-set to make a difference in our own lives and the lives of people around us.
The important question to ask then is, how do I effectively listen to myself and speak up? Katty Kay and Claire Shipman, authors of “The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance---What Women Should Know” talk about advice implicit in findings of studies done on this subject. The advice is to become more confident, women need to stop thinking so much and just act! What has your experience been like? Let me know!