Publisher - September 2021
“I am just a girl chasing her dreams and
having an amazing adventure.”
— Madeline Stuart —
You have probably seen the popular phrase #GirlBoss on coffee mugs, T-shirts, journal covers and the like, but it is not a new concept. Women have been large and in charge forever, just ask Cleopatra. Millions of women have worked diligently and fearlessly to get our gender where we are today. However, even when it seemed women were oppressed, they still had the power in them. I can almost guarantee they were the boss of something.
My mother was not a #GirlBoss at work (though she was a confident ob/gyn nurse), but she was the monarch at home. Both my mother and father worked, but Mom was the one who made things happen. We all marched to her regimen, and because of it, I developed a strong sense of work ethic and belief that anything is possible with enough determination. Mom had an abundance of steel determination. When you combined that with her energy and a penchant to be a finisher, pretty much every waking moment was spent doing something under her command.
Being a #GirlBoss starts with being in charge of yourself. One can’t effectively lead others without having the capability to lead oneself. During my 17-year stint in the corporate world, I had both good and bad bosses. The bad ones were usually bad because they were over their heads, which made them not only an insecure boss, but an insecure human. This type of manager, who treats their team like a roadside chain gang, are more than likely treating people outside of work, like their loved ones, equally poorly. It’s because they can’t even be the boss of themselves. These people are the bane of the corporate world and are the cause of many great teams falling apart and/or becoming unmotivated and mediocre. Nobody wants to perform for someone who can’t perform themselves.
Just as one should apply oxygen to herself before helping others should a situation arise on an airplane, one must be the boss of herself before she bosses others. It’s just that simple. Good leaders, whether at work or home, build others up, including themselves.
It’s easy to be a #GirlBoss when you start with yourself, and know for sure that when other’s lights shine, it does not diminish the brilliant glow of yours. This is both as simple as making a decision and as difficult as mastering an art. However, there are a few super easy, uncomplicated things you can do to be well on your way to becoming your own #GirlBoss. Here are a few suggestions to start:
Eat Healthy: Healthy eating empowers you to take care of yourself on a life-changing level. Have you ever noticed how you take care of the things you value? For instance, you may throw a pair of costume earrings into your makeup case when you take them off, but you would never do that with your diamond ring. Obviously, the ring is worth more, and you treat it as such. When you start eating right, you are making a loud statement to yourself that you are worth more! And, not only do you start feeling better almost immediately, you upgrade your status in your mind, which automatically upgrades your life.
Keep Your Car Clean: How does a clean car elevate your #GirlBoss status? Your car is a reflection of who you are to the world. People see how you keep your car just by parking next to you. While a co-worker may never come to your home, chances are high that you may go to lunch together. If you have to spend 10 minutes moving clutter and garbage around in your car in order for someone to ride with you, it’s a downgrade of self. The mess in your car represents the mess in your life. This is a no-brainer to a better life. Make it non-negotiable to keep your car nice and tidy. You will feel better about yourself—and your car— immediately.
Read a self-help book: Choose an area of your life you would like to improve upon and go buy a self-help book on that topic. I suggest you actually buy the book so you can study it, highlighting great points that motivate you to grow. Life is about constant growth and wanting to better ourselves. Diving into the world of self-help is an easy, self-paced way to gather ideas, learn and implement change. If you are a #GirlBoss at work, with direct reports, I encourage you to explore the leadership tips and skills of Dale Carnegie, John Maxwell and Napoleon Hill. Remember a leader is admired, a boss is feared. Managing people effectively is a skill that will catapult your career to greatness over and over again.
Don’t be a snob: Snobbery is nothing more than allowing your insecurities to escape your inner being and misbehave. Treating people as you would have them treat you is one of the bossiest of #GirlBoss characteristics you can have. Being kind is super cool; being a bitch isn't.
These suggestions are simple, almost elementary, on purpose. It doesn’t take much to start being your own boss. Invest in yourself; you are worth it. Big dreams start with small steps, and remember, there is no force more powerful than a woman determined to rise. Are you ready to find your power and step into it? I promise it will be a perfect fit.