Last week, I was privileged to attend the Center for Women’s Annual Conference. (For those of you who don’t live in South Carolina, the Center for Women educates and advocates so that women in South Carolina have economic success and are leaders in their professional , community, and personal lives.) I’ve been a long-time supporter of the Center for Women and always look forward to attending the annual conference. It is an incredible opportunity to gather with other women to not only work on our own personal development but to also provide support and encouragement to our fellow professional women.
As always, the speakers and the programming were top notch. I had the chance to sit in on a presentation by Mofoluwaso Ilevbare of Women Inspiring Women where she discussed how to reposition your career for success. The more I think about her words of encouragement and the strategies she shared, the more I feel her three key strategies can be used for much more than just the career aspect of a person’s life. Here is what I mean.
Mofoluwaso’s first strategy for success is to:
Learn From The Past – But Don’t Stay There
It is healthy for us to reflect on our past in order to learn important lessons, identify patterns, and have better insight to our development as individuals. This is important for us when evaluating our career but it is also important when evaluating other areas of our lives such as relationships, health and wellness, spirituality, etc.
We did a really cool exercise where we graphed the highs and lows of our career. Then she asked us to take a look at the graph to see if we had any takeaways. The one thing that jumped out at me was the fact that my lows are always followed by an upswing, no matter how low the point was. Regardless of how bad it felt at the time, things always got better. And, not only did they get better, the high point after each low ended up being higher than the previous high point. A very encouraging trend, if I do say so myself.
I have not completed the same exercise for other areas of my life but I suspect that I will see similar trends whether I graph my relationships or anything else.
Just remember, while it’s great to reflect on our past, resist the urge to stay there. You can’t pick up anything new if your hands are full holding on to your past.
Mofoluwaso’s second strategy for success is to:
Maximize The Present
There are several keys to maximizing the present. I did a blog post on one of them several weeks ago called Mindfulness – The Power of Living Life in the Present. It is impossible to maximize the present without focusing on the here and now.
Another key is to minimize distractions. And, I don’t mean turn the TV off during dinner. It is really important to monitor what we allow into our hearts and we must be mindful of our self talk.
In addition to always putting our best selves forward and ignoring the noise of the world, we must also surround ourselves with people who will lift us up. It is not impossible to travel this road by ourselves, but it is much less lonely and much less hard to travel the road with others. Find travel partners who believe in you and respect you enough to hold you accountable for working toward that which you desire.
Mofoluwaso’s third and final strategy for success is to:
Inspire Your Future
This is your opportunity to breathe life into your tomorrow, whether it be your career or any other area of your life. What does your desired tomorrow look like? Write that vision down. Now, what will it take to make it happen? The only way to “eat an elephant is one bite at a time”. So, how do you break your vision down into manageable goals and steps? Who can help? How will you hold yourself accountable?
Today is day one – what will you do differently to start working toward your dreams and achieve your success?