Building a Business from Formulation to Momentum

Building a Business from Formulation to Momentum

Growing a business seems relentless, asking constant dedication. Too many business owners give up just when they are ready to take off. Why? Because they lack a framework for where they are and what’s next.

This business coaching exercise is often part of the work I do with small business owners and it gets results every time.

Every Woman has Something Wise to Say

Every Woman has Something Wise to Say

Over the years, hundreds of women were my teachers.  They taught me that every wisewoman has something she wants to say. She’s got a voice because she cares. When she listens to the wisdom of her heart, something really matters to her whether in the backyard with the kids, in a company as part of the senior management team, or holding political office – she is ready to speak up.

If There is Anything the World Needs, it is Wisdom

If There is Anything the World Needs, it is Wisdom

“If there is anything the world needs, it is wisdom. Without it, I exaggerate not at all in saying that very soon, there may be no world, or at least none with humans populating it.” Putting our focus, vital energy and resources behind what our wise internal voice says can change the course of our lives, with one wise step and then another. Listening to this voice, we can discover our true priorities.

Listen. Open space to hear. What matters the most to you?

Climbing Out of Habitual Grooves into a Life that Expresses Who You Truly Are

Climbing Out of Habitual Grooves into a Life that Expresses Who You Truly Are

A flowering tree opens, expands and grows with simple encouragement – water, light, mulch.  Keep it in the dark, or expect it to grow without attention and we get a weak spindly tree, bearing little fruit.

Like the tree, without mindful awareness, our wisdom languishes until it is nothing we can count on in tough times.

How Do You Find Wisdom instead of Overwhelm?

How Do You Find Wisdom instead of Overwhelm?

I want to know how you access your wisdom even when overwhelm threatens - as you walk into the contentious meeting at 3:00, when your colleague disses you in front of your boss, when your friend didn’t include you in her New Years invitations.

What works for you? How do you return to the broader view of your wise self?

Get Your Twinkle Back

Get Your Twinkle Back

I know. It’s that time of year. Crazy. Chaos. Yet, we love it. But, how can we possibly find time for a much needed pause in the midst of our fast-paced multi-tasking?

Are you Tilting or Are you Turning?

 Are you Tilting or Are you Turning?

Are you hitting “TILT” some days?  I am, so on December 21st, in my home town of Mill Valley, I convened a small circle of women to enjoy the power of a pause – a time to sit in silence, complete some of the past and gather forces for the New Year. Why mention it now?

Why Do Children Climb on Chairs?

Why do children climb on chairs? And why do adults sit on them? Guest blogger Jennifer Kenny challenges our preconceived notions about the value of developing feminine wisdom in leadership and business.

“The prevailing thinking would tell us that children climb on chairs because they have not been trained to sit on them. However if you look carefully at how children interact with chairs you will notice that they climb on them, write on them, sit on them, play on them, ignore them and sit on the floor. It is only when they begin to distinguish chairs from other items that they begin to sit on them. A child sees a chair and they have no preconceived notion as to what a chair should be used for, so they climb on it, experiment with it, sit on it, they knock it over, they write on it, they ignore it, basically, they do whatever takes their fancy when it comes to engaging with the chair.

The interesting opportunity for us, is to look at how people engage with feminine wisdom. If they don’t know what it is, if the distinction of feminine wisdom, and the sub distinctions of feminine wisdom, don’t exist for them, then they simply, climb on it, sit on it, knock it over, write on it and ignore it, they use it for whatever purpose they think is appropriate – if they even see it in the first place. Remember children also sit on the floor quite happily and comfortably.

We are in a unique position, at this moment in history, to be able to distinguish and identify the facets of feminine wisdom and to bring forth those facets into the world in a way that they will be distinguished and in distinguishing them people will understand them, they will understand the value of them, they will understand how to engage with them, they will understand how to be able to pay for applied feminine wisdom and how to leverage feminine wisdom.

Karen Buckley has done truly foundational work in distinguishing the facets of feminine wisdom and working to bring those distinctions to a broader audience. She has distinguished nine facets of feminine wisdom and in so doing she has created the opportunity for all of us to enable humanity (masculine and feminine) understand what problems feminine wisdom can solve, what value feminine wisdom brings, why it is unique to the feminine (not just to women but to the feminine) and why that value can in turn add value for those around us and for those in our community.

Over the next few months you will see Karen articulate those distinctions in her blog and she will be publishing a book about those distinctions. She will also be looking to engage a broader audience in identifying understanding, valuing and appreciating, applied feminine wisdom and we will be working to create frameworks for bringing feminine wisdom to the world, in the same way masculine wisdom has been brought to the world.

The task ahead of us at the moment is to understand these distinctions ourselves, understand how each of us embodies one or more of the facets of feminine wisdom and help the rest of the world understand how to engage with feminine wisdom, what value it brings and how feminine wisdom can be instrumental in solving some of the enormous problems facing humanity today.

Onward!!

Sincerely, Jennifer”

Editor’s note! Jennifer, I have the biggest smile ever with your fine acknowledgment above. I too am very excited to share the distinctions we are all building every day as we become the wise feminine leaders that we are meant to be.

Jennifer Kenny is Interim CIO of SRI International. Jennifer has an extensive background in management consulting, change initiation and the design of business processes and systems strategies for Fortune 500 companies, including starting her own consulting firm BizThink in 2007.

Because I love working with women to discover these distinctions for themselves I put together the Next Octave Leadership Webinar that starts this summer where we’ll talk about the source of personal power and increased effectiveness.

Warmest regards, Karen

Turning Point

Turning Point

This is hard to admit, but every now and then I slide into a familiar, yet dismal, groove of “I’m not enough.” Like the angst of teen-aged years, I feel confused and inept. It’s not much fun. The good news is I don’t stay there long.

Leadership Changes Emerge in Third Act of Life

Leadership Changes Emerge in Third Act of Life

In the midst of my mid-life career, what I call my second act, I felt driven to work hard, lead my team to meet our performance goals, contribute as a leader in my profession and serve in leadership roles in my community.

Girlfriends Equal Health: They Teach it at Stanford

In my passion for my work I often keep going long after I need a break – and I’ve been accused by women friends of appearing too busy to get together.  While I’ve read this piece before – my sister just sent it to me today, reminding me that while work feeds us in many ways, and personal “cave time” is essential for connecting with our feminine wisdom, we need the ease, laughter and strength we find in the mirror of our girlfriends to thrive. Here’s an excerpt from the article -

They Teach It at Stanford

“I just finished taking an evening class at Stanford. The last lecture was on the mind-body connection – the relationship between stress and disease. The speaker (head of psychiatry at Stanford) said, among other things, that one of the best things that a man could do for his health is to be married to a woman, whereas for a woman, one of the best things she could do for her health was to…

…nurture her relationships with her girlfriends.

At first everyone laughed, but he was serious. Women connect with each other differently and provide support systems that help each other to deal with stress and difficult life experiences. Physically this quality “girlfriend time” helps us to create more serotonin – a neurotransmitter that helps combat depression and can create a general feeling of well being. Women share feelings whereas men often form relationships around activities. They rarely sit down with a buddy and talk about how they feel about certain things or how their personal lives are going. Jobs? Yes. Sports? Yes. Cars? Yes. Fishing, hunting, golf? Yes. But their feelings? Rarely.

Women do it all of the time. We share from our souls with our sisters/mothers, and evidently that is very good for our health. He said that spending time with a friend is just as important to our general health as jogging or working out at a gym.

There’s a tendency to think that when we are “exercising” we are doing something good for our bodies, but when we are hanging out with friends, we are wasting our time and should be more productively engaged—not true. In fact, he said that failure to create and maintain quality personal relationships with other humans is as dangerous to our physical health as smoking!

So every time you hang out to schmooze with a gal pal, just pat yourself on the back and congratulate yourself for doing something good for your health! We are indeed very, very lucky. Sooooo let’s toast to our friendship with our girlfriends! Evidently it’s very good for our health.”

I sure find my own benefits in female friendship and spending time in circles of women which is why I host an annual women’s retreat on the island of Molokai. Join us if you are ready for some fun in a circle of amazing women, like you.

Tend-and-befriend is a behavior exhibited by some animals, including humans, in response to threat. It refers to protection of offspring and community (tending) and seeking out the social group or friends for mutual defense (befriending). In evolutionary psychology, tend-and-befriend is theorized as having evolved as the typical female response to stress, just as the primary male response was first identified by Walter Bradford Cannon.

The tend-and-befriend theoretical model was originally developed by Dr. Shelley E. Taylor and her research team at the University of California, Los Angeles and first described in a Psychological Review article published in the year 2000.[1]

BTW - I’m taking my own medicine and just sent a text to my neighbor for a walk. Plus, I posted this on my computer screen: “A failure to create and maintain quality personal relationships with other humans is as dangerous to our physical health as smoking!”

A walk or cup of tea anyone?

Karen

Does Feminine Wisdom Make a Difference?

Does Feminine Wisdom Make a Difference?

What does your day look like when it includes feminine wisdom? Is it different?