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No one should have to go it alone. Here are a few ways to help create more community and connection to empower women and girls in your part of the world.

5 Ways to Build Your Own Community of Empowering Women

As women, we have an advantage over most men. Do you know what it is? Are you taking full advantage of it?

A woman’s advantage

Many women grow up with a built-in community. Ages of wisdom have been shared from grandmother to mother to daughter, from aunt to niece, from sister to sister. We know that this community of sisters and elders anchors us to truths that others don’t yet know. We can turn to one another, wherever we find our sister or soul sister, mother or elder.

This message of community is powerfully expressed in Margaret Wheatley’s poem, “Turning to One Another*.” She tells us “There is no power greater than a community discovering what it cares about.” She reminds us that we MUST turn to one another. That is where we find the strength to discover “what’s possible” and know that others “share our dreams”.

How can you help build community and connection to empower women? Even if you haven’t grown up with an empowering support system, you can build your own, by being open to making new connections, reaching out, conversing, and sharing your hopes, dreams, and ambitions. For example, we, Maria Connolly and Louise Santiago, met and connected at a coach development program. The more we talked the more we discovered our values and vision were aligned. Since then we have been working to build this business to empower women to be fierce leaders.

No one should have to go it alone. Here are five ways to help create more community and connection in your world. Notice that within each area, you give to yourself before you can give to others. 

Shine a spotlight on other women. Don’t be afraid to verbalize or write your gratitude for the things the women in your life do and the way they are in the world. Think about how positive acknowledgment has impacted you. Make time every day for this and never be “too busy”.

Recapture your essential nature. Generations of people have learned to suppress and disown their true selves. They give away their power by hiding behind a persona and showing the world a censored version of self. It’s time to bring back your authentic self! When you reconnect with your purpose and values, you’ll embrace what and who you are now AND actively unlocking the full potential of what and who you can dynamically become through mindful, personal growth. 

Model healthful living. A healthy body is the powerhouse from which we attain meaningful aspirations and dreams. Without clean water, nutritious food, and energizing exercise, the human body can’t function properly. When you practice and model wellness, you empower women to be the best version of themselves. Also, it’s essential to nurture a powerful spirit that lets dreams soar and won’t give up. A practice of mindfulness and self-awareness is the basis for creating harmony in this mind/body/spirit connection. 

Promote lifelong learning. It gives you a competitive edge in today’s job market. Women who know they can learn new skills when needed won’t feel stuck in a profession. It makes you a highly sought after as an expert in any field.  It slows cognitive decline and makes you a happier and more interesting person. You’ll always have something to talk about, so conversations can be more deeply meaningful.

Invest in yourself. Before you can give to others, it’s vital to have a continual commitment to developing oneself in order to be a stronger part of the community. This can be challenging because as women, we’re often juggling multiple responsibilities and end up lacking the time, energy, or focus to do deep personal work. Make a commitment to yourself to get away and seriously explore and clarify what you want. Visit lovely surroundings where you can de-stress and think deeply without distraction.

We, as women, have the privilege, and responsibility, to use our community to empower each new generation to come. At Newave Leaders, we offer an Annual Retreat where you have the opportunity for turning to one another. We’ve developed a community of empowering women who share a passion for developing their internal leader, incubating their dreams, and turning their vision into a new reality. 

We’re getting ready to announce our 2020 retreat in Costa Rica. We invite you to sign-up at the bottom of the Bring Forth the Leader Within page to stay up-to-date on the details.

 *For your convenience, here’s a link to Margaret J. Wheatley’s “Turning to One Another.”

Transform your life and your business by learning to be intentional in all aspects of your life and career choices, actions, speech, demeanor and appearance

Be Intentional – The Key to Extraordinary Leadership in Business & Life

Visionary leaders know how to be intentional. That’s really their secret for success! The good news is that everyone, especially those interested in a new wave of leadership, can learn how to be intentional. When you master this skill, you’ll gain unflappable self-confidence and a tremendous sense of freedom, because you’ll be more likely to make choices and act in harmony with your dreamspurpose, and primal core — the things that make you unique.

At Newave Leaders, our mission is to develop intentional leaders. It takes time and focused effort to learn how to be intentional in the big areas of life. Too often, we’re shaped by others in ways that don’t serve our higher purpose, so it’s beneficial to learn how to reset who you’re being, to bring forth the leader within.

What does it mean to be intentional? We’d like you to consider how you respond to the following questions to identify where you’d like to be more intentional and deliberate in your daily actions and choices. Notice which ones you’ve taken constructive ownership of and which ones you allow to just happen…

Be intentional about your self-care. 

  • Do you have basic routines around well-being?
  • Have you set boundaries that honor your strengths and your limits?
  • What activities, situations, and people  fuel your energy?  
  • What takes your energy away?
  • Are you making time for rest, relaxation, and fun? 
  • Are you mindful about who and what you say “yes” to? 
  • What is your criteria for saying “yes”? 
  • How do you hold yourself accountable to that criteria? 
  • How often do you revisit your purpose and bring it to the front of your thoughts? 

Be intentional about your associations.

  • What do you participate in?
  • Who do you  associate yourself with?
  • Do your associates build your name and reputation?
  • Is the amount of time you spend with your associates productive? 
  • Do your associates promote what you stand for, respecting your values?

Be intentional consistently.

  • Do you set an intention and then expect it to continue on its own?
  • How do you handle distractions?
  • What keeps you from saying “No”? 
  • What less important pieces of work or life are you allowing to take up more time and energy than necessary?
  • Are you fully self-aware of how your actions, speech, and appearance signal your  message?
  • Do you track your progress, so you don’t ever lose sight of how far you’ve come?

By being intentional in all aspects of life, we give focused energy to our purpose. For example,  we at Newave Leaders (Maria Connolly and Louise Santiago) check in regularly about how we feel about our work together, our thoughts about our collaboration, and our individual and shared energy. We love it when we can say “YES!”  We intentionally choose to put our energies into these moments, as they feed us, which in turn, gives us energy to share with others.

We invite you to take advantage of our 30-minute consultation to see if partnering with us is a good fit that enables you to fully be intentional in your life and in your leadership. 

Empower women build trust and don’t need to control everything. They recognize the talent of the team and encourage each to see opportunities, not barriers.

Empowering Women Lead with Trust and Cooperation, Rather Than Fear

Have you noticed as you watch the news how many leaders are exploiting others with antiquated leadership models, like “it’s my way or the highway”? Isn’t that leadership model based on a shaky foundation of fear and obsessive control? As a result, creativity and innovation are stifled, which can sound the death knell for businesses, organizations and even governments in today’s fast-paced world.

However, we also see a very promising trend…we’re seeing the new paradigm of community emerging — one based on trust and cooperation. Leaders are guiding from alongside or behind, which is an effective and more feminine model of leadership.

Women around the globe are becoming fierce leaders who are making a difference. When empowering women lead they do it very differently. Women are organized around care and compassion, fairness and justice. Often, when women are at the round table, the conversation is about how all can benefit. 

Historically, we have had male models of almost everything. That led to a misconception of how leadership should be. Now that there are more women in many types of leadership roles we have the opportunity to offer new models, move beyond models that no longer work, and bring a sense of wholeness or balance to the world of leadership that has long been lacking. We see a solution in women, in the distinct way women use power. Women’s leadership is a force that can and must be harnessed for the global good.

However, it’s not just empowering women who are embracing this style of leadership. Many men are seeing the advantage of adopting this more feminine, caring style of leadership. They see the benefits of focusing more on people rather than on the numbers.

Any organization built upon trust and security, instead of fear or authority will be more stable as each member is appreciated and is working toward a common goal. It creates a powerful synergy where the group accomplishes more together than they ever could as individuals alone.

 Like parenthood, leadership is about putting your staff or team before your own interests, being willing to sacrifice yourself for your people. It means being a good listener first, and then a good communicator who understands each individual. For example, empowering women know that Millennials especially want to be given the freedom to experiment, a voice within their organization, and the ability to pursue what they view as meaningful work. They want to feel challenged. Anything less they view as limiting.

It’s time to shed the old-fashioned view of “the boss” and start influencing others by coaching and leading them.

Empowering women don’t need to control everything. They recognize the talent of the team, and they encourage the most qualified person to run with a project or initiative. They step out of the way and guide from the background, when needed.

It’s more important to build solid relationships within your organization than “getting the job done” at the expense of your team cohesion. It’s not always easy to effectively resolve conflict among a diverse group of people, but if you show you’re willing to roll up your sleeves and work alongside them, or you’re willing to fill in for them when necessary, that goes a long way to building a “collaborative, family feeling.” This approach fosters a spirit of understanding, communication, motivation, and even a sense of humor.

Coaching is one of the best ways to encourage your team to bring out their own abilities and find their own solutions. They learn to move past mental blocks and limiting beliefs to achieve things that they otherwise wouldn’t have seen as possible.

Imagine leading a team where everyone sees opportunities rather than barriers and each member is valued for their limitless potential. This is possible when empowering leaders train themselves and their leadership teams in the art of coaching.

Are you ready to embrace your leader within? Take advantage of our 30-minute free consultation to help you decide if the PADLE model is for you and how we can best support your journey. To get started click here to fill out our brief questionnaire that will provide you with insight based on our PADLE model. Discover how, with our personalized feedback and coaching support, you can make rapid progress toward your goals. 

A strong leadership presence requires awareness, consistency, self-motivation, practices/routines, values, and a personal mission

E is for Extension — How You Manifest Your Leadership Presence

“Your hand opens and closes, opens and closes. If it were always a fist or always stretched open, you would be paralyzed. Your deepest presence is in every small contracting and expanding, the two as beautifully balanced and coordinated as birds’ wings.” ~ Jelaluddin Rumi , The Essential Rumi

Would the word “leader” be used to describe you? Do you feel like a leader when you walk into the room? Do your family, friends, coworkers, and colleagues comment on your leadership?

If you’re uncertain, don’t write yourself off as someone who’ll never be taken seriously as a leader. A person doesn’t develop a powerful leadership presence overnight. 

Developing a leadership presence is our passion, because we believe that when women work together we can make a positive difference in our future. As Melinda Gates recently said, “I tell my daughters to have their voice in this world, and it became clear I needed to role-model that.”

To support each woman grow and develop as a leader we’ve created a process called the PADLE model. In our last few blog posts, we’ve been giving you a glimpse into each step. (Primal Core; Awareness; Declaration; and Leadership.)

The last step is Extension. Extension has to do with how you show up in the world; how you extend the work you have done on and with yourself into your professional and personal life. Extension is the way you bring your gifts into the world. You manifest it in the way you interact with others, the way you take care of yourself, and the way you live with integrity. It stems from how you think, make decisions, behave, manage your emotional state, and communicate. It is your leadership presence!

Leadership presence is a balanced blending of personal and interpersonal skills that sends all the right signals. It’s how you show up, how you make others feel, and how effectively you communicate both verbally and non-verbally. It gives you the “wow” factor. Ask yourself:

  • Do I show up as a leader, with clear communication, strong empathy, and follow up on requests in a timely manner?
  • Do I recognize the increased value I bring to others when I pause to take care of my own needs?
  • Am I clear with the direction I want to go, who I want to impact and how?

People will be drawn to, and persuaded by, your leadership presence if you:

Radiate self-confidence. Remember, the expression you see on someone’s face is about them, not you. Keep your cool and don’t let them hijack your moment to shine!

Shift your focus to serving others. To create and deepen relationships, constantly look for ways that you can be of assistance to others.

Communicate well. When you balance excellent verbal skills with nonverbal cues of confidence, power and warmth, you will have the most impact.

Your presence in the world is an ongoing endeavor. It is the result of your inner work, knowing your strengths, weaknesses, talents and biases. This requires awareness, consistency, self-motivation, practices/routines, values, and a personal mission. 

Those who have excellent leadership presence always have great human support, too. We’d love to support you. We encourage you to take the first step and work through our PADLE questionnaire. This free questionnaire has been designed to provide you an honest assessment of where your leadership skills are right now and where you want to be. 

The most important leadership manual you can ever study is the wisdom within your own body! Learn to tap into this wisdom within to gain YOUR best outcomes.

Unlock the Wisdom Within to Power Up Your Leadership Skills

“Control is not leadership; management is not leadership; leadership is leadership. If you seek to lead, invest at least 50 percent of your time in leading yourself— your own purpose, ethics, principles, motivation, conduct. Invest at least 20 percent leading those with authority over you and 15 percent leading your peers.” ~ Dee Hock

Would you be surprised if we told you, without ever seeing your bookshelf, that you already own the most important Leadership Manual you could ever study? It’s quite possible you’ve been using this Manual for some time but haven’t fully utilized it yet.

What Leadership Manual gives you the fastest, most sustainable shifts in your leadership behaviors? It’s the wisdom you hold in your own body! The key to your success is knowing how to tap into it. Maria, who has taken leadership trainings from the Strozzi Institute is highly skilled at helping clients connect and learn from their bodies to grow in their leadership. Today, she’ll share some pointers with you…

Neuroscience research on the mind/body connection shows that our leadership behavior is embodied. To change your behavior requires that you become very aware and mindful of what’s happening in your body. You can then use this wisdom to shape your thoughts and behavior so you intentionally obtain your best outcomes. Based on your body sensations, you become aware that you have more options available to you, so you can make smarter, more skillful and more compassionate choices.

We tend to spend too much time in our heads, and not enough time accessing the intelligence in our entire nervous system. When you tap into your body’s wisdom, you power up your emotional intelligence and find your true self. You can, therefore, create faster and more sustainable shifts in your behavior. Understanding how to heal the mind/body connection – the embodied – somatic – whole person is powerful!

The first step toward greater emotional intelligence is to practice mindfulness daily, so you’re fully present in the moment and recognize how your emotions and thoughts are affecting your body – your posture – your energy.

Take into account that our biological structure is created in our first five to seven years of life, which sets certain responses as our habitual way of being. For example, to survive, you’ve formed unique responses to stress. Perhaps it triggers anger within you or maybe withdrawal and avoidance. These often unconscious responses will show up in your leadership behavior. And they’re not always easy to shake, because they have become your survival responses.

The good news is that you can reprogram your body and rewire your brain! When you change your body shape, you can change a deep-seated behavior, which significantly improves your leadership outcomes. Act like a winner, and you’ll be a winner. Act like a leader, and you’ll be a leader. Even if one brain circuitry has been damaged by inactivity, illness, stress, or trauma, you can often consciously train a different brain circuit to work around the broken one.

Leadership is the fourth step in our Newave PADLE leadership model. When you declare what is important to you and how you’re going to act daily, you begin your journey into leadership. Leadership is the process of becoming more deliberate and purposeful by bringing daily practices that are aligned with your embodied purpose. We invite you to take our thought-provoking questionnaire and power up your leader within.

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Newave Leaders

Newave Leaders Mission:

Our mission is to educate, inspire, and empower women to intentionally develop their authentic presence, core values, attitudes and skills that are the foundation of high-performance leadership.

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