When you say NO to a particular assignment, you could be saying YES to a bigger one around the corner.
What attracted me most to Hinduism as a child were the sculptures and images of them with all their beauty, voluptuous figures, gorgeous smiles, finery and six arms with a symbolic tool in each hand. They were able to balance it all effectively and so can we.
In my years of coaching especially women, I have found a few common traits in my own clients from all over the globe and in this article I want to share three of these common practices with you.
1. It does not have to be perfect.
Though their perfectionism may have gotten them far in their lives and careers, they shed that skin early in the climb. They learnt that “good enough” is good enough as it allows them to delegate.
The first step is to delegate the menial home tasks, like cooking, cleaning, and helping kids with homework or driving them around. Allow your partner, or husband to take some responsibilities.
Next delegate at work; invest the time to teach, coach and inspire your team and assistants so that you can hand over projects to them completely, without micro-managing every step.
Be okay with the nanny doing some things for your children. Welcome in-laws to contribute their time and love into your life. Of course you can take this to extremes, I know women, who delegate their shopping and have a personal assistant who filters their emails/calls for them as well.
Start with little tasks and see how much time you free up just by being willing to let go of everything being perfect all the time. When you free up your time by being okay with “good-enough” you will let go the need to control every single thing, and be able to focus your time and effort on what really matters.
2. NO is not a bad word.
They are comfortable saying and hearing “no” because they know that EVERY no is a YES to something else.
As a woman who wants to make it to the top, you have to be “thick-skinned” to hearing “no”! When you become OK with hearing “NO” to your ideas, your suggestions, your request in your personal and professional life, you will be able to be persistent. This will give you the NEVER GIVE UP attitude and the persistence that you need to succeed.
My mantra: “The more NOs I open myself up to hearing, the closer I am getting to my super successful life.”
Learn to say NO in order to say YES to your sanity!! Practice it, it will get easier – we have been programmed to say YES and the best way to re-program yourself is to show yourself that EVERY single NO is actually a disguised YES – just to something else.
When you say NO to a particular assignment, you could be saying YES to a bigger one around the corner. When you say NO to a request, you could be saying YES to a few nights in with yourself to strengthen your own connection with the Universe. Get it? What are you going to say NO to this week and what YES will that allow?
3. Spend time on yourself.
Successful women are calm, dignified and go about their seemingly hectic days with ease and grace. They have a commitment to a personal daily practice which I call the iHour.
My personal iHour has grown into almost 2 hours now, with TM Meditation for almost 40 minutes, treadmill for 45 minutes, writing in gratitude in my TAG Gratitude Journal for 5, connecting with my mum and daughter and learning something new. I watch a TED talk or read something inspiring and aim to teach it to someone.
The iHour is the first installation I put into my day in order to get the most out of it. It is time to myself to “charge my batteries” and connect to my higher self – almost like plugging into a modem and nurturing myself so that no matter how busy my schedule may get, I know that I have already gotten what is most important to my physical, mental and spiritual nourishment in and I am ready for the day!
Just like you take a shower and brush your teeth daily without fail, (I hope :-)) practicing the iHour will become a habit as well. Look at it as the Vitamin that will keep you energised and ready for the curve alls of the day. Why would you skip it? So what are you going to put into your personal iHour?
Avon chairman Andrea Jung woke up at 5 AM and everyday used to hit the gym and still be at her desk by 8. Vogue editor Anna Wintour is on the tennis court by 6 AM every morning before work and Starbucks’ Michelle wakes up at 4:30 AM everyday to go running. Oprah Winfrey and Ellen Degeneres practice TM (Transcendental Meditation) twice a day every day.
As important as the iHour is, I am a strong, strong advocate of enough sleep. So don’t burn both ends of the candle, you will end up being cranky and losing your calmness. So ensure you go to bed early enough every night in order to wake up to your iHour! Remember, an awesome day starts the night before!