What are the attributes that bring ‘doer’ women together? The idea behind DrivenWoman is not based on a common industry, background, education or career. People ask what brings women together and creates this extraordinary feeling of unity? So it’s time to share the characteristics that bring us together as one of the most energising and empowering women’s networks in Europe.
Many of us suffer from a feeling of not being good enough. We spend our energy trying to appear more successful, more accomplished or together, rather than using our energy to fix or change the issues that need to be dealt with. At DrivenWoman we accept openness and honesty as our starting point, because this way we can identify and remove any obstacles that might be holding us back. Sharing our genuine authentic stories is how we can help each other move forward. In our co-development groups, as women share their experiences truthfully, they help other women in the group face their own struggle. Most women we meet, no matter how accomplished, often face the same issues.
When you define your our own success your journey becomes deeply personal. Stop expecting someone else to motivate you! Not feeling motivated may mean that what you are doing is not what you should be doing, or that you are completely overwhelmed. DrivenWoman helps women take small steps towards their goals each month, showing them how to gain commitment to the goals that they have defined and keeping them accountable within the group, whilst co-developing within the safety of their group.
At DrivenWoman every dream is created equal. This means our members come from different backgrounds and cultures and thus define their own success in very different ways. You might ask what can a 21 year old startup entrepreneur and a published author or stay at home mother give to each other, but it’s these connections which are outside of our social or economical norm that really teach us most about ourselves. When you learn to accept everyone as your equal regardless of their pay check or title, you soon realise that you are starting to accept yourself the way you are. Nothing is more empowering than this!
DrivenWoman teaches women that it is important to show up, and keep taking small steps in the directions of your goals. Actions speak louder than words, and so we help women break down big goals into small, doable goals, removing overwhelm and developing a sense of reliability and achievement.
We all face challenges and sometimes hit a brick wall, but every wrong turn and mistake is simply a learning opportunity in disguise. Sharing our struggles in our co-development groups is a key to finding solutions. Many women miss their golden opportunities because they are too afraid to ask for help in fear of exposing their imperfections. We help foster authenticity, overcoming the fear of asking for help.
Appreciation starts from a belief that everyone has something unique to bring to the table. We must appreciate our own talents and purpose and not shy away from sharing them with the world. Women are currently holding the whole world back because we don’t appreciate enough our own brilliance, and as a consequence the brilliance of other women. Learn to flourish and your sisters will flourish with you! DrivenWoman teaches women to celebrate their talents and successes.
At DrivenWoman our aim is to get comfortable with the uncomfortable. All growth happens outside of your comfort zone so it’s important to keep challenging yourself to do things you haven’t done before and try things that might lead to failure. Stepping outside our comfort zone can be scary and often not very easy, which makes us feel vulnerable. However, in the words of Brene Brown: “You can’t get to courage without walking through vulnerability.”
It’s clear that if you give up at the first hurdle in life, you won’t get very far. Some people may be naturally more resilient, but this quality is definitely something we can all keep building! Every time you dare to do something new, or make a mistake, you can choose to learn from it and move on, rather than give up what you have already built. Every time you share your vulnerable experiences with your DrivenWoman group, you help your fellow driven woman face their difficult situations.
We sometimes find ourselves in situations that are far from ideal. Our expectations may have been too high and we feel we like failures if we don’t get the outcome we desired. I for one have learned this lesson sitting in an empty room when nobody showed up to our introduction evening! By accepting my situation that night, I learned that I should always show up and do my best. Just that is enough in itself. Following on from failure, I can assess and learn what I can improve next time round. There’s no point in beating yourself up or blaming others or your circumstances if things don’t go your way.
One of our core beliefs is that you should always do the best you can with the resources you have available today. Many women abandon their dreams simply because their resources (time, money, support, health, energy, confidence…) are not perfect, today. There’s not a single thing in life that you can’t improve. You may not make it perfect, but by working on something and accepting change you can always improve your resources and your situation.
Enjoy the Journey
DrivenWoman doesn’t look to fill up your to-do lists. We teach women to to enjoy every moment of being alive. The key is to learn to laugh at yourself and not take everything and life so seriously! I certainly wasn’t born with ability to laugh at myself, but it’s the most valuable skill that I have learnt. Vulnerability practise helps and as you lighten up, the world suddenly seems like a much nicer and happier place. Funny that!
We often hear members saying how they apply the values of DrivenWoman in their every day lives, saying “I went into the situation and would have normally kept quiet, but then I remembered what a DrivenWoman would do and I spoke up.” or “One of the greatest gifts being a DrivenWoman is that I’m now at ease with asking for help. This single mindset change has had a huge impact on my business.” or “I would have not put myself forward as a speaker if it wasn’t for DrivenWoman. But I remembered that it’s ok to be vulnerable and make mistakes and that I don’t have to be perfect if I try something new.”
You may also notice that we’ve left out words like ‘Courageous’ or ‘Confident’. We think these are in a way overrated qualities. And the fact that every woman leader in an interview answers that her key to success is to have confidence, may do us dis-service! What if you don’t have confidence, does that mean you do not deserve to have success? Building the confidence muscle takes time, our DrivenWoman groups practice this every month, and over time, we can all become the best versions of ourselves.
Most of us do not have confidence when we are starting something new. That does not mean you are doomed for life. We rather praise women who are ready to step outside of their comfort zone, their confidence zone! Let’s embrace uncertainty and follow our hearts, no matter what.
What other attributes do you think should be added? What does it mean to you to be a driven woman, a woman who wants to define her own success and take steps to living a bigger life?
Please comment below, we’d love to hear your views!