You could say I’ve been doing some field research: intensively listening to conversations amongst my female friends – processing and analysing for trends. While that may sound clinical, I’ve found that I am frustrated with common problems that we constantly talk about but never make behavioural alterations to fix. I came up with a list and have included it below. I cannot say that I am not a culprit of some of the things on there – I think we all are – men and women alike, but self-awareness always helps. So here goes:

  • Start believing in yourself – your skills, abilities, etc. (say no to ‘Imposter Syndrome‘)!
  • Stop buying stuff you don’t need – remove the social and financial conditioning that more stuff will make your existence better – it won’t.
  • Stop trying to be a clone – embrace diversity of interests, aesthetics, opinions, desires, etc.
  • Stop evaluating worth on appearance – you are much more than your physical entity.
  • Stop talking about men all the time and start talking to them.
  • Don’t be afraid of ‘hard’ subject matter – study or explore the worlds of engineering, science, technology, etc.
  • Start speaking your mind – let go of the fear of what others will think – be outspoken!
  • Start focusing on your goals – what do you want?
  • Don’t wait for anything or anyone to make your life better – do it yourself.
  • Start supporting other women – there are no threats – only opportunities for advancement…
  • Exercise – take up a competitive sport – it’s never too late to start/resume.
  • Say no to discomfort – personally, I feel high heels are akin to Chinese foot binding!
  • Embrace ageing – embrace the signs of wisdom.
  • Stop devoting time and energy to things that don’t matter.
  • Don’t waste time on anyone who doesn’t respect you.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want or need.

I love men and I love women, but I grow tired of these self-fulfilling prophecies and pseudo social norms that we place on women. If we can make small changes from within, the bigger picture will follow.

What else would you add to the list?

15 thoughts on “Lifehacks for women

  1. Great post and yes, I am guilty of some of these. Although, I must say it is women who only have themselves to blame … we seem to create the ‘social norms’ some the go on to fight off! Ironic? Yes. But I have learned to accept some things are just the way they are. Call me anti-feminist but sometimes I do just want to look pretty for the boys!!

    Loving your blog Kate and admire you for baring your soul.


  2. Very brave, succinct and to the point. These two points I keep saying to the ladies I know. Sadly it is a long process to change the tide.
    * Start believing in yourself – your skills, abilities, etc. (say no to ‘Imposter Syndrome‘)!
    * Don’t be afraid of ‘hard’ subject matter – study or explore the worlds of engineering, science, technology, etc.

  3. Don’t be afraid if being alone you can go to a movie alone, dinner, coffee you don’t need someone. Having just gone on holidays alone fir 10 days to San Fran I was amazed how ok I was with all this me time. It was really good fit me to stop and just be instead if always doin.

    Love the list Kate! Very inspiring and true.

  4. Great post. I agree! I am in the middle of a major life change and I could not agree with you more. Embrace your abilities and run with them.
    I am amazed by how many of my friends are letting their lives slip by without any real connection to what is happening in the world..AND I am amazed by my talented friends who do nothing to harness that talent and energy.

    Thanks for your post.

  5. • Be assertive. Assertive != aggressive, despite what those who would ‘put you in your place’ would have you believe.

    • Put _your_ needs (career goals, salary, work-life balance) first. It’s not your job to ‘nurture’, ‘mother’, or otherwise bring ‘soft skills’ to your team/group/company.

    • Wear what you feel comfortable in, that’s appropriate for your task. Don’t feel compelled either to either ‘femme it up a bit’ or dress ‘like one of the boys’. Be the most ‘you’ you can be.

    • Let your light shine. You know it’s blinding, you know that it can draw attention to you. That’s a Good Thing(TM). Shine!

  6. Agree, this is a great post. Very honest, thought provoking and empowering. Here’s my add:

    Stop the negative talk! Focus on the positive. Even if it isn’t real yet, tell yourself it is and you’ll start believing it and work towards it.

  7. Great post Kate!

    I find it interesting that we find ourselves being constantly drawn into activities and habits that sometimes don’t really make sense -but we continue to do them anyway. Sivers recently posted about it –

    Anyways, keep up the clinical observations ;)

  8. Great post, and you’ve clearly been listening well. What would I add?

    1. Don’t be afraid to spend some time alone

    2. When wondering what to do about something, think what you’d advise your best mate to do, and then do exactly that. You ARE your own best mate after all (or should be)

    3. Work to live, don’t live to work – life is too short

    4. Never fear the truth

    I look forward to seeing how this post evolves….

  9. It is unfortunate that what seems like a bunch of common sense ideas are the opposite of what society expects of/teaches women. I especially like “hard” subject matter, need more women programmers dammit!

  10. Thanks for this Kate, a great way to start my Friday. I agree that these are true for men and women to be fearless and really embrace life.

    My tip would be to follow your passion when it comes to your worklife.

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