For the past twelve weeks, we have examined twelve habits to break that hold women back from their next raise, promotion or job. It has been an eye-opening journey as we became aware of certain behaviors or habits that could keep us stuck in a job or even derail our careers. But the authors of “How Women Rise” did not leave us to figure out our next steps. They provided practical advice and tips in the final chapters of the book on “Changing for the Better.”
“So now you know which habit – or, let’s be honest, habits – may be playing a role in keeping you stuck. Maybe they’re habits you’ve grown attached to because they helped you in the past. It’s humbling to admit that what used to work for you has stopped working, and a little scary because familiar behaviors can feel like part of who you are. But it’s inspiring to consider how much you might benefit from letting them go.” Change is tough and sustainable, long-lasting change requires focus. Here are some tips to assist us along the way:
- Be intentional about the behavior you wish to change – know your purpose, define it, speak it, and share it.
- Identify one behavior at a time and work on it until you see progress.
- Make small changes and repeat them until they become habits.
- Change relies on “willpower” – remember that our brains are programmed to default to whatever requires the least effort.
- Break down a habit into segments if it becomes too much to handle at once.
- Enlist help – consider a coach or share with a trusted co-worker your plan to change a certain aspect of your behavior and solicit feedback. “Be careful . . . you will want to choose someone you trust and sees you on a regular basis, either in meetings or as part of a team.”
- Let go of judgement – “In our experience, judgement is the number one thing that could get in your way. Judging yourself when you fall short of your expectations.” Hang in there and keep working your plan.
These are just a few of the closing strategies from Sally and Marshall and they close out the final chapter with thoughts on “Remember What Got You Here,” with this statement: “Successful women tend to be avid self-improvers. You probably are, since you’re reading this book. One of the many reasons we enjoy working with successful women on habits and behaviors that get in their way is that they rarely react defensively on suggestions about how they could get better. On the contrary, they usually listen attentively and then get to work with enthusiasm and zest.”
As we wrap-up this review, we give a big “shout-out” to Sally Helgesen and Marshall Goldsmith for co-authoring this fabulous resource for women. If you have not already secured a copy, I encourage you to visit www.hachettebooks.com now.