I am a woman and I am over 40. Well, for some years already. I am a ‘career woman’. I had created a career in a corporate world first and then as my private practice. I’ve always loved what I was doing and I feel very fortunate for that.
I come from a society where women have always had the same rights as men. Well, now I see that probably ‘too same’, but that’s a topic for some other time.
Only when I moved to Australia, I started to realise that all career limitations I have known before, as a theory, may actually be real and true for women in other countries. Glass ceiling, corporate ladder climbing rules, boys clubs, gender equality issues and more that have not been part of my experience till then.
Of course, we live in different countries with different cultural and historical backgrounds and so there are different societal expectations for what women’s role ‘should’ be and what is the ‘right’ career for women.
Only when I moved to a new environment I became aware of my own limiting beliefs coming from my society. Only when they were tested they suddenly raised into my awareness. And I am glad for that! I know now that the prejudice becomes your own belief only when you chose!
All right, we live in different countries, speak different languages and face different “Shoulds and Shouldn’ts”. The good news is that even though we face different types of prejudices of society we live in, it makes us the same. Yes, I mean it! That’s what we have in common. There are some prejudices in every society in regards of women’s role and women’s career. And it’s good to know them, be aware of them and make a free choice anyway.
So what’s my point? I believe in free choices. Regardless of who we are and where are we from. We have a birth right to live our lives the way we chose. And that includes our career choices. To be creators of our own career, it is good to follow these couple of rules.
Know what you want – stop for a while and ask yourself what you truly, truly, truly want. Grab any answer that you get. It doesn’t need to be exact and specific. Just grab whatever answer you get and follow it. Keep asking questions. Stay open and feel the answers through your heart. Yes, ladies, it is absolutely all right to be a woman in this process, use your heart and leave your critical judgmental analytical mind resting for now.
Be aware of your own prejudices – write a list of all beliefs that you hold around women and career, especially if you are over 40. You may be surprised by some of them. Have a look at all of them and find out how they influence you and your own choices. Then chose what you want to keep and what you want to change.
“If it is to be, it’s up to me” – don’t expect something will change outside in the society and then all what you want will happen. Once you know what you want and what you want to change, make a decision and take the first step. It doesn’t need to be a giant step. Start with what you feel comfortable with. You are making a choice for yourself, no one else.
Be proud for who you are – be yourself and encourage the others to be themselves. No competition is needed, no comparisons with anyone else. We are all worthy exactly as we are and for who we are.
Connect with others – there are many women on the same journey, creating careers and whole lives as they want. Connect with them for support, inspiration and encouragement. That’s what we as women like and need, don’t we? We like to get together, cooperate and co-create. Find an environment where you can be authentic, open and vulnerable and where you will be understood. Share your experience openheartedly.
And most importantly, love yourself, take care of yourself, honor yourself and value self.
I believe that the best time to create a meaningful, fulfilling and heart driven career is right now. Do you?
With love, Karolina Maya