Monthly Archives: August 2017

Is love in the air at your office?

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Office romance is a risky business.

The workplace can be a challenging environment, so don’t embark upon any romantic liaison without fully contemplating the consequences and carefully managing some serious office politics.

If you are considering a romantic involvement with someone at work spend some time imagining both the positive and potential negative aspects of the relationship.

Consider if you are really looking for a relationship or just friendship, what are the best and worst things that can happen, do the good things outweigh the bad ones?

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FEM PROFILE: MINE BATIYEL

“Creativity is more likely to come about when you are doing rather than thinking” – quoting Mine Batiyel

Help you to succeed in life and work

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After having spent about 30 years in business Mine Batiyel, Femflection Co-owner, felt it was the right time to quit and she has never looked back since. The most influential aspect that kept her out of business was art. At the age of 50, she started attending an art studio (D S Art Studio). She had not drawn anything until that time. What was initially intended as a hobby soon turned into a full time “job”.

Mine is an animal lover, a vegetarian, almost a bookworm, loves to do and watch sports, is very passionate about music and needless to say enjoys drawing and painting.

What is your favourite Quote or life motto?

There are so many which I have stored over the years – here are some of them:

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Brené Brown, “The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are”

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Reviewed by Femflection

Dr. Brené Brown is a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work. She has spent many years studying vulnerability, courage, worthiness, and shame.

Brené is also the Founder and CEO of The Daring Way – an organization that brings her work on vulnerability, courage, shame and worthiness to organizations, schools, communities, and families.

Brené’s 2010 TEDx Houston talk, The Power of Vulnerability, is one of the top five most viewed TED talks in the world, with over 19 million viewers.

The Gifts of Imperfection Quotes

  • “Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of who we think we’re supposed to be and embracing who we are. Choosing authenticity means cultivating the courage to be imperfect, to set boundaries, and to allow ourselves to be vulnerable; exercising the compassion that comes from knowing that we are all made of strength and struggle; and nurturing the connection and sense of belonging that can only happen when we believe that we are enough. Authenticity demands Wholehearted living and loving—even when it’s hard, even when we’re wrestling with the shame and fear of not being good enough, and especially when the joy is so intense that we’re afraid to let ourselves feel it. Mindfully practicing authenticity during our most soul-searching struggles is how we invite grace, joy, and gratitude into our lives.”
  • “If we can find someone who has earned the right to hear our story, we need to tell it. Shame loses power when it is spoken. In this way, we need to cultivate our story to let go of shame, and we need to develop shame resilience in order to cultivate our story.”
  • “Wholehearted living is about engaging with our lives from a place of worthiness. It means cultivating the courage, compassion and connection to wake up in the morning and think, ‘No matter what gets done and how much is left undone, I am enough.’ It’s going to bed at night thinking, ‘Yes, I am imperfect and vulnerable and sometimes afraid, but that doesn’t change the truth that I am also brave and worthy of love and belonging.”
  • “When we can let go of what other people think and own our story, we gain access to our worthiness—the feeling that we are enough just as we are and that we are worthy of love and belonging.”
  • “The dark does not destroy the light; it defines it. It’s our fear of the dark that casts our joy into the shadows.”
  • “What does it take to live and love from a place of worthiness? How do we embrace imperfection? How do we cultivate what we need and let go of the things that are holding us back? The answers to all of these questions are courage, compassion, and connection—the tools we need to work our way through our journey.”
  • “The more entrenched and reactive we are about an issue, the more we need to investigate our responses.”
  • “Hope is a combination of setting goals, having the tenacity and perseverance to pursue them, and believing in our own abilities.”

The Gifts of Imperfection – the Book

As the subtitle to “The Gifts of Impecfection” indicates, Brene’s intention with the book is to encourage us to let go of who we think we are supposed to be and embrace who we are. It is her guide to wholehearted living.

She says that wholehearted living is about knowing that you are enough. Yes, you are imperfect and vulnerable, but also brave and worthy of love and belonging. She explains that Wholehearted living is not a once-off choice, but instead a lifelong process or journey.

The book begins with three chapters that focus on the tools we need for a wholehearted journey — courage, compassion and connection — and the barriers that get in the way of wholehearted living.

The bulk of the book focuses on 10 guideposts that help you cultivate a wholehearted life. The guideposts are: authenticity; self-compassion; resilient spirit; gratitude and joy; intuition and trusting faith; creativity; play and rest; calm and stillness; meaningful work; and laughter, song and dance.

Each guidepost is illustrated with essays, stories, inspiring quotes, meditations, and dynamic creative exercises designed to help you develop the skills to accept your vulnerabilities with compassion and practice loving-kindness toward yourself and others.

One of the strengths of the book, among many, is Brown’s ability to turn concepts into clear, concise, meaningful and interesting stories. In every chapter, she clearly defines the guidepost with own research examples. For instance, on authenticity she writes:

“Authenticity is a collection of choices that we have to make every day. It’s about the choice to show up and be real. The choice to be honest. The choice to let our true selves be seen.”

The Gifts of Imperfection is a beautifully written, powerful guide that you’ll keep coming back to, for inspiration, information and reminders—for the times we forget—that you are worthy precisely as you are, without striving for perfection.

If you are interested in living a Wholehearted life and letting go of perfectionism, I highly recommend you to buy the book.

Your story, our platform: If you’ve got a story and would like to share it with other Femflectors, please let us know. Femflection is all about transferring learnings to help others, be they big or subtle. We want to connect with your feelings, your learnings, your reflections or your hopes for the future – in blog or interview format. Express yourself here. Get in touch with us via anja.uitdehaag@femflection.com

For more content visit our website http://www.femflection.com

What is in it for the mentor?

Eeyore – Winnie-the-Pooh

By: Anja Uitdehaag

In the words of Albert Einstein:

“Problems cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them”.

A mentor-mentee partnership is a personal learning and developmental partnership between someone with a vast experience and some one who wants to learn. It is a helpful relationship based upon mutual trust and respect.

A mentor is a guide who can help the mentee to find the right direction and who can help him/her to develop solutions to career issues. Mentors rely upon having had similar experiences to gain an empathy with the mentee and an understanding of their issues.

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Lindsay’s In Business: PART 27: Manifestation

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What happens when you realise your path is entrepreneurship rather than employment? Lindsay takes up the challenge and shares an account of her journey as it unfolds…

Despite the last blog on feeling renewed, I have to admit a tad of insecurity that happened just before it, and how I got over it.

Here’s the scenario. You’re running a business. It’s in start-up mode. Currently, the vision is still imagined fiction. Suddenly, the ground starts crumbling from under your feet, then starts to collapse into an endless abyss. With your stomach in freefall and your eyes and mouth wide open in a silent scream, you’re scrambling with the rocks and the dirt, plunging downwards in fear and dread.

Unless you get out of that, it’s the end. In fact, I would guess that many small businesses fail because this is the unbearable part that defies any reason to continue. Sometimes this fear and dread only lasts for 5 minutes, sometimes it lasts for days – but this is where owners bail out.

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Situation 45: Second guessing one self

In a face-to-face meeting Boss is requesting Betsy to replace Mansy during his leave of absence. Betsy is obviously flattered by the request but also doubts whether she is ready for this responsibility. She asks whether maybe Billy would be a more logical choice.

(Click on the pictures to see them in full size)

A great leader:

  • Is self-confident and readily seeks and accepts new challenges;
  • Looks for opportunities to grow and develop her capabilities;
  • Seeks help from others to enable her to succeed.

How to best handle the situation:

If you are invited to step up and take on new responsibility, this is because you are seen as someone with the capabilities required to succeed at this level. Of course, it may also be a test to see how well you perform in new situations, however, this is borne out of a belief that you have potential. If you are ambitious and want to move up in your career you should welcome the new challenge with open arms.

Treat this interim assignment as you would any new job: understand what the expectations are of you in the role, be clear on the goals, objectives and priorities you need to deliver on, meet with key stakeholders in your new capacity. It is probable that you will be working with the same people as you did before this assignment, so it is vital that you act at your new higher level and communicate to your colleagues that you are in a different role with different demand than previously. Take the time to establish new working arrangements with your colleagues and any direct reports you may now have.

It can be daunting stepping into a higher-level position, so it is worth enlisting some support – a coach or mentor – who can help you navigate the new complexities of your role and transition to act at the level commensurate with your new responsibilities.

Schedule some 1:1’s with your (new) line manager to review your progress and take steps to ensure that you stay on course.

Learning suggestions:

  • If you are seeking promotion, people are more likely to award that to you if they already think of you as operating at that level. Take time to know the accountabilities of the role(s) that you aspire to and start to assume/volunteer for some responsibilities related to these.
  • Observe how your seniors, particularly, those whom you admire dress, talk, behave etc., and try to emulate them.
  • Get exposure to more senior levels in the organization to learn about how work gets done, the decisions that are taken etc. – request shadowing opportunities, volunteer to sit on cross-functional steering groups, contribute to discussion groups and fora etc.
  • Work with a mentor, who is a seasoned professional, whom you admire, to learn more about your area of expertise and the organization and develop your capabilities to a higher level.

 Femchallenge:

  • Volunteer to join a high, visibility project or sit on a committee that gives you a different perspective of your organization.

 Femcommunity tips:

We welcome your thoughts, experiences and comments on how you would deal with such a situation.

Find more on our website Femflection.com

DECORATING YOUR OFFICE…

Help you to succeed in life and work

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How you decorate your office does say something about you and can be a conversation starter when unfamiliar people visit you, so it is worth considering what subtle messages you want to convey and the topics you are happy to discuss with strangers.

We spend a lot of time at work and research has shown that people perform better when they work in a pleasant environment, clean offices, with natural light, plants, comfortable furniture etc. (see, for example, http://smartbusinesstrends.com/tips-creating-healthy-efficient-positive-work-environment/) and are able to customize their work space to some degree. In fact, we see a lot of firms (Hubspot, Dropbox, Skype, Evernote, AirBnB etc. http://mashable.com/2014/01/09/playful-workspaces/) that design work spaces that reflect the company culture and often provide ‘play’ areas as well as quiet spaces to give their employees the freedom to move between different work environments that suit their needs and moods.

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