HOW TO CHANNEL FEMININE ENERGY IN YOUR WORK
Since I started The WW Club, I've been asked several times about why it's valid - or even helpful - to bring gender into the conversation when it comes to the way we think and talk about work. (The implicit question being: It's 2015, surely we've moved beyond all that now? Well, while wage inequality is still standard (mal)practice around the world, I'd say the answer is a resolute: Erm, no). My thoughts on this subject could extend to several articles, but this week I've been thinking about the gender gap from a more positive angle, and specifically considering the benefits of harnessing feminine energy in your work.
Firstly, it's worth noting that when I use the term 'feminine energy', I'm referring to a spectrum of character traits that aren't by any means limited to those of us who identify as women. All humans possess both masculine and feminine traits, but certain characteristics tend to be more pronounced in different people. There's no doubt that the working world has long celebrated and encouraged those traits which are 'masculine' in their nature - relentless action-taking, goal-setting, and striving, to name a few - while feminine energy traits such as intuitive decision-making are largely seen as ineffectual and unfocused.
As the world shifts from industrial to information-based economies, I believe that the focus from masculine to feminine energy will shift with it – the latter being a far better match for the new systems of work. In the meantime, here are some ideas for how to harness that energy in your work today.
Masculine energy is destructive, while feminine energy is creative. So get creating! If you've gotten caught up in the humdrum, admin-based aspects of your job, take an hour to make something just for the fun of it. It could be related to your profession, or totally distinct from it. We've all become so results-driven that even those of us who have 'creative' jobs can forget to incorporate this kind of activity into our daily routines.
In our biological capacity as mothers, women are made to nurture. But this trait can also extend to the way that we work. It's all too easy to get stuck in your own head and to become obsessed with your own career development - perhaps it's worth taking some time to consider how you could help someone out instead? Offer your skills to a friend or spend some time mentoring a younger relative... Just make it about someone else for a minute.
Follow Your Intuition
Masculine energy is analytical by nature, while feminine energy is more about going with your gut (the phrase 'female intuition' exists for a reason). If you've been stuck on a career dilemma for ages, why not take a rest from self-help books and the endless action lists and try 'feeling out' the solution instead? That might sound a bit hippy-dippy, but give it a try: just close your eyes (or better yet, go for a walk without your iPhone) and visualise all the possible outcomes of your situation. Which one feels best? Follow it. Gut decisions are rarely wrong.
Be (Don't Do)
Feminine energy is passive rather than active. While I don't recommend sitting around waiting for an amazing career opportunity to drop in your lap (probably not happening, alas) I do think there's a lot of value in cultivating a sense of acceptance in your daily working life. We can get so caught up in chasing the next goal and comparing ourselves to others that we fail to acknowledge where we're at: right here and right now. Instead of making a to-do list tomorrow morning, why not make a list of all the things you've already done this year? It will probably be far more motivating than writing an endless check list of errands.
If The WW Club exists for one purpose, it's to connect women worldwide. I think spending time in the company of likeminded women is immensely beneficial for your work, mood, and all-round sense of wellbeing. Make it your business to spend time with a woman who inspires or uplifts you, even if it's just for coffee. It will probably be the best part of your day. (And if you're in London, do so with The WW Club at our dinner at Rita's next week!)