I have always liked the It Takes A Village idea. Getting and giving other women—and men—support when they need it is essential for the success and well being of us all. It is also one of the core principles of The Women’s Code. I was reminded of the wisdom of the village idea two weeks ago, when one of my clients fell off the path, literally, when her bike toppled over and she injured her hip. She couldn’t drive or sit in a chair for longer than a few minutes before feeling pain. Single, with her own business, she faced a daunting task. How to meet her deadlines, keep up her lovely house and garden—and get to the doctor—all without sitting or driving? All of a sudden she had to completely reconfigure her life and rely on other people for help. What a concept!
It’s hard to ask for help, isn’t it, even with our friends. And yet we all need it from time to time. In business, we can’t possibly know how to do everything and occasionally we need help figuring something out. Like how to use a financial spreadsheet for the first time. Or the best way to send large image files. To meet one project deadline, my injured client realized she needed help and she temporarily hired a photo researcher and graphic designer—referrals she got through my network.
The thing about support is that it must work both ways. Be prepared to give it as well as to receive it. In the workplace, I’ve seen how little support women give each other. In fact, some sabotage each other. Rivalry, jealousy, dishonesty, toxic behavior, withholding of information, all that really exists. This is not the right way to succeed, and remember that saying: what goes around comes around. Harvard Business School graduates believe it takes a village to raise an entrepreneur: http://goo.gl/oDXlx
If you were properly supported — if women were properly supported–we wouldn’t need to be doing these types of things. We would collaborate instead of compete, we would include other women and welcome the ideas of everyone, regardless of how different they may be from us. I love this quote from Tina Fey, she says, “I like women. I support women. I’m like a human bra.”
I believe that God, the Universe or Spirit has a way of taking care of business for us. It’s said that to break a habit it takes 21 to 30 days. Could it be possible that my client’s injury may have been a not so subtle hint that it was time to change her routine in order to heal and be more productive?
She is doing better, by the way, but still she cannot sit or drive for very long. She has been to the doctor twice—two different friends drove her–and she met her deadlines by working on her couch, lying prone, her legs outstretched, her neck and back supported, and her computer balanced on her belly. Quite a set-up, but she has been even more productive than usual and the other day, she told me: “So, this is what support is about.” Yes, and it really will make a difference in your life.