Whether you’re starting out, contemplating a career change, already established or planning on branching out in your career, I cannot recommend Sophie Amoroso’s book #GirlBoss enough!
I found this book at a point in my life when I was severely lacking in motivation and questioning if I was even good enough to make it as a blogger. The blogging world can be particularly tough going when you don’t have as clear a remit as beauty. lifestyle or parenting bloggers. I frequently wondered if there was even a point in blogging because I wasn’t making the numbers quite as much as my beauty based counterparts.
Reading #GirlBoss gave me the kick in the ass and the motivation to stick what I was doing and to remind myself why I had started a blog in the first place- To kick ass, motivate change in myself and others and enact positive change in my own and others existence.
So on this bright and beautiful Sunday morning I want to share with all you lovelies what I took from the #GirlBoss book.
D0 Surround yourself with motivating people.
Be it a Mentor, good friends, supportive family, your blog squad or all of the above. You need people around you that you can have open, honest and truthful conversations with. Having people around you that understand what you are doing, the policies, procedures, tactics and techniques is invaluable. On a personal level I know when I am struggling I can get in touch with my blog squad and ask them anything. Be it advice, direction, editing, anything! They are already doing what I am doing so they know the score. We acknowledge that yes it’s a competition but our individual successes do not come at the expense of others. We champion each others work and share opportunities and acknowledge that a rising tide will raise all boats. It’s fabulous, empowering and much needed. For the times you need to be kept grounded and and removed from the day to day mechanincs and hustle of what you are doing it’s so very important to have a network of supportive people around you. People outside of your business circle who can offer practical supportive advice that you may have overlooked. Not to mention it’s always nice to have someone there to give you a pat on the back and tell you how amazing you are.
Don’t Be a Slave
Be responsible for your own time management. Make sure you take time out to switch off and recharge. If you want to continue working hard you need to take time out to chill and refresh. If you want to be a good leader you need to have the energy to do so, you won’t have that energy if you are checking your emails, stats or likes every five minutes.
Do Encourage Variety
In any kind of #GirlBoss role you will find yourself surrounded by personalities, inspiration and information. Roll with these changes if they fit for you. You are your own #GirlBoss and change can only be a good thing, particularly if you are feeling stuck and stagnant. It doesn’t mean you have to change your core goals or beliefs (unless you want to) it just means you are changing it up a bit and altering the path of the journey you are on to get there. Sure change can be scary but nothing worth having ever came easy.
Don’t Take over
No matter what field you are in you can guarantee that it is hella small and bad news will travel much faster than good. Work with as many people as you can and build up your network. Far too often I have seen people take on enormous tasks and refuse help when it is offered, only to come back with their tails between their legs afterwards. Ego without foresight is not a good look on anyone! Particularly when your community is pretty small to begin with. It might not seem very #GirlBoss to be humble but manners will go a long way to helping you out in the long run and even though you think you might not need someones help now, you never know when you might need them in the future. Bottom line aim for ambition but avoid arrogance because that shit is going to bite you in the ass sooner or later.
Do Ask for Opinions
If you present as a know it all people are going to get pretty tired of you pretty quickly. There is no #GirlBoss out there that knows so much that she doesn’t need a friendly bit of advice from time to time. The more you grow and the bigger you get the more you can become disconnected from those who were there for you when you were just starting. Open up the channels for discussion, ask for opinions, suggestions, tips and guidance. None of these things is a sign of weakness, it demonstrates that you have faith in those around you, you are interested in what they have to say and you are keeping in touch with your audience or customer. It takes genuine confidence and gives those around you a buy in to you and your brand if they are helping to shape it. On the opposite end of the spectrum is an individual who thinks they know it all, doesn’t need any help and doesn’t care what anyone else has to say. What kind of #GirlBoss would you rather be?
Don’t Be Intimidated
You’re getting used to your new role, finding your feet in a new venture and you have some so and so giving you the side eye, throwing shapes and getting a little animal planet with the marking of territory. Just breathe and remember it’s a transition for them too. There is a new boss on their patch and they are intimidated because of a lack of confidence in themselves. I once had someone request a meeting with me and mid meeting sneer at me “What exactly is it you blog about?”. Can you feel the sting of that one! Initially I took it personally, don’t! Never ever take on someone else’s bad manners and poor business sense as a slight on yourself. If they don’t have the intelligence or foresight to know their stuff then you won’t have to worry about them for much longer. Let them have their moment to feel superior, bide your time and in time you will be superior without having to make someone else feel small.
Do Show Your Personality
In a world where there are thousands of every possible thing you could be looking for there will only ever be one you. If you are looking for a unique selling point then #GirlBoss you HAVE to be yourself. Some will love it some will hate it but at least they know you can be counted on to be consistent. Moreover it makes you more relatable and shows people you are human too. I love writing, I am so passionate about it and sharing my stories and ideas and hearing others stories too; but there are some days where getting from my bed to the couch is a struggle- Anxiety is a bitch. This doesn’t make me less of a writer or an activist but it does make me more human, showing people that I am not “on” all the time can encourage others to help achieve their goals also. After all what are you doing if you are not putting something positive out there in the world.
Don’t Try Too Hard
It is very easy to fall into a routine where we feel like we have to prove ourselves or prove that we are worthy of people’s time or attention. Be you first and foremost #GirlBoss, you are a human of value and you deserve all good things that come your way because you have worked for them. Stay true to you and the rest will come, it’s just about knowing when to put your time into the right things and only you can judge that.
Do Use Your Powers for Good
I’m a firm believer in giving back. I got my start because others gave me their time and shared their knowledge and that is something I won’t forget. Equally whenever I can I repay this kindness by giving back. If there is a group that wants me to give a talk I will volunteer my time, if someone wants advice on how to get started I will meet up with them or arrange a Skype chat. It’s not because I’m obligated but because I want to give back. As I said earlier I firmly believe a rising tide raises all boats and my success is no reflection on anyone else’s. I firmly believe that by working together with no ego and sharing our knowledge we can conquer the world. Plus of you’re nice to someone you never know when they might come back and repay your kindness. However I will add a word of caution to this, do not be taken advantage of, there are many out there who will drain you of your time energy and resources if they get a chance. Treat your mind and time as if it were cash and only spend it on those who are willing to match your investment.
Don’t Forget Real Life
Trust me it’s very easy to get caught up in work and achieving your goals, particularly when things are going well. Remember your friends and family, remember to take time out, remember you’re a womble… sorry I’ve had too much coffee. Take care of yourself, working too hard means you will burn out and get sick. Take your time out to appreciate life, your family and friends. Life is short and there is more to it than just working. Go for dinner with family, meet friends for coffee and cake, catch up with friends abroad. Life is for Living #GirlBoss so get out there and live it.