Wednesday, March 27, 2013

The Wonder Woman Syndrome

I was over at a very good friend’s house this week and we were talking about Women’s ministries.  Sadly, at our church, there are none.  Most of the women there just support each other as best they can. 

It’s clear that women need the fellowship of other women.  This is proven by the popularity of Sororities, of Women’s groups, Fraternal Organizations like the Daughters of the Nile, the Daughters of Isabella, Girl Scouts and many others.  (Men have the same need too, by the way, which is why they have their own.)  Sometimes we just need to be in the company of our own gender.  It doesn’t mean that we’re keeping secrets or hiding things from our spouses.  It just means that we are comforted to know that others are like us, that we are all facing the same challenges. 

Over the next little while, let’s talk about some of those challenges that many women face.

First off:  We try to be/do everything for everyone.

Copyright © 2009 DC Comics, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
The Wonder Woman Syndrome.

Have you ever felt angry at yourself for not having a perfect house, a perfect family, a perfect job, a perfect body and a perfect social life?  Do you suffer from Wonder Woman syndrome?

How much of the following can you identify with?
  • Our lives are ruled by our Agenda or DayTimer?
  • We demand more of ourselves than we do of anyone else around us.  We try to be everything for everyone. 
  • We feel that our home should be impeccably clean and fashionably decorated; mostly with things we’ve crafted/created ourselves.
  • We expect to be able to take our kids to all their extra-curricular activities, be involved and still get everything else done.
  • The reflection in the mirror makes us seriously consider getting up at 5am or earlier to go workout an extra hour or two.
  • We spend a fortune on skin care products to hide the fact that we don’t get enough rest.
  • We are driven with the need to get a raise, better job, make more money.
  • We try to take care of our kids, our spouse, our parents and our friends all at the same time.
  • We worry if we volunteer enough.
  • Anytime anyone asks us to help with a bake sale, Fundraiser, or such, we can never say no.
  • It’s midnight, and we’re in the kitchen cooking because we can’t show up at the potluck empty-handed
  • Being double or triple-booked is normal.
  • Weekend?  What weekend?
What do you mean I’m not Wonder Woman?

Anyone who knows me well will tell you that I can rock a pair of killer red boots like nobody’s business!

But Linda Carter can keep the Wonder Woman boots.

What happens when we try to be Wonder Woman?  We get burnt out, we drop the ball and we miss out important events.  We disappoint our loved ones and ourselves.  The more we try to take upon ourselves, the greater the chances we will drop something.

The greatest challenge women face today is learning to prioritize.  We need to learn to differentiate between what matters and what doesn’t.  But no one can tell you what matters and what doesn’t.  It’s a very personal thing.
For one person, letting the dust gather on the knickknacks for another week is perfectly acceptable, if it means being able to go out and run every day.
For another, having a spotless house is essential, because it’s always filled with family and friends.
We have to remember, and remind each other, that we are allowed to say NO!  That it’s ok not to participate in everything.  Nobody’s perfect. 

What we need to learn to do is to choose the things we’re ready to let drop, and to hold on to what really matters to us.

Do you identify with the Wonder Woman Syndrome?  Tell us about it.  
What have you done to try to keep afloat?  Do you have any additions to make to the list above?

Friday, March 22, 2013


Let me tell you about a good friend of mine.  We'll call her Kay.  She will recognize herself in this post, as will anyone who knows her.
Kay is an old friend of mine.  We've known each other for many (many) years. I consider her a good friend.  It's interesting to note that Kay and I do not share the same faith.  In fact, we are pretty opposite in that aspect.  We've had times where we totally agreed with each other, and times where we couldn't disagree more.   And disagree we HAVE!  On more topics than I care to count.

That is something I admire about her; she is not afraid of speaking her mind.

Now, in Kay's case, when she speaks her mind, or when she makes a statement, you can count on the fact that she's done her research, and she's thought it out, and it's not just whimsy.  It's a documented fact, according to her perception.  I MORE than respect that.

You know, when dealing with Kay, that you will get the straight story, no BS, no white gloves and brutal facts.  Just the facts, ma'am!  She doesn't pussyfoot around, nor does she mince words.


How many people do we know who will spew opinions and quote garbage facts just to further their own opinion?  How many people formulate opinions based on Facebook status updates and posts?
The internet is overflowing with disinformation, falsehoods and lies.  Our Political System is dependent upon such deceptions.

Can you count how many people you could call Authentic?  Not too many, I bet.  Sincerity, truthfulness and authenticity are rare virtues in today's day and age.

Let's hold up a mirror.  Let's look at ourselves.  Would OUR friends call us Authentic?  Sincere?  Truthful?

Wow, that's the hard part.

Personally, I strive to be Authentic, sincere and truthful.  I can't honestly say that I'm always 100% successful but I make an effort.  I hope that I'll get there one day.

What about the people around us?

Care to share with us someone you feel is a truly Authentic person?  Go ahead an post in the comments, we'd love to hear about Authentic people.  (Doesn't have to be a woman, btw)

I can't wait to see what you'll post!

Monday, March 18, 2013

What is success?

Everyone wants to be successful.  But what does that mean?  

Does it mean that you have to have the Billion-dollar Mansion with the 7-car garage filled with Maseratis, Ferraris and Lamborginis? 
Maybe you’re not in the mood for Italian, so you go for the Porsche, the Rolls or the Aston-Martin.
What? You don’t care about luxury cars and big houses?  Does this mean you’re not successful?

What is success?
For many, many years, the image above was on my wall.  This is what I was striving for.  This was my goal.  Boy was I mistaken.
Today, I have a modest little home.  But let me tell you, I couldn't be happier if I was in a multi-million dollar home.  It’s the happiest place I know.  I have never felt happier anywhere, I have never had more moments of pure delight than I do in this place.
Cars?  Well, we are blessed to be a 2-car household.  My Spouse is a “car guy”, and having a brand new car made him happy.  Me, I’m happy with my much older, reliable, 4-door sedan. 
So, I don’t have a mansion, or a Delorean (which was my dream when I first purchased the poster above.  Perhaps too much Back To the Future...)
Does this mean I have not yet achieved success?

According to Merriam-Webster:
Definition of SUCCESS:   suc·cess  noun \sək-ˈses\
1  obsolete : outcome, result
2  a : degree or measure of succeeding (To attain a desired end)
b : favorable or desired outcome; also : the attainment of wealth, favor, or eminence

So, I take this to mean that success is a desired outcome, which relates back to wealth, favor or popularity.  Right?
For me, being successful means something completely different.  I’ll share that in the next entry. 

What does success mean to you?  Share your thoughts in the comments.

I look forward to reading your thoughts!

Welcome and introduction

Hello Leaders,

Welcome to the first post on this Blog about Values-Based Leadership for Women.  This is a topic that has fascinated me for a very long time.  How can we balance leadership and success with strong values, convictions and Faith?
Is it possible?
Of course!  We are capable of more than we think.  There are many of us who have an unfortunate tendency to undervalue ourselves.  We feel that we have to "settle".  This is not true.  There are many examples of women who have achieved success without compromising what they believe in.  I won't get into them right now, but perhaps in a later post we can explore the topic of Inspirational Women.
You've surely noticed by now that I mention Faith, and that my profile shows that I am a Christian.  That is my true belief.  I have not always followed that path, but I do now.  However, if your beliefs are different, that's fine.  Your own Values and Faith belong to you.  What I aim to do here, is to show how you can still be a successful Leader while remaining true to what is important to YOU.  (Not what's important to ME!)

It is true that our world is one filled with corruption, crime, deceit, lies and cheating.  An accountant once told me that it was "necessary" to cheat on your taxes, otherwise you lose money.  Wow.  That blew me away.
It is also true that our world is filled with honesty, integrity, beauty, love, compassion, truth and sincerity.  But it just doesn't make for good headline news, so we are rarely exposed to those things. 

It's up to us to choose.  What will we focus upon?

It's not easy when you're trying to "Get Ahead" and you wish to remain true to your values.  Whether you're climbing the corporate ladder, or just trying to achieve something modest, you will face some pretty difficult decisions.  You will make mistakes.  You will need advice, support and inspiration.

I hope that this site will help.  I welcome your comments.  I would be delighted if you would share the challenges you face.  Perhaps, as a community, we can all become better equipped to overcome them.

Have a terrific day!