Women are naturally empowered!
Yes, you heard it right and they truly are. Over the past years coaching dozens of clients from both genders, I noticed a common theme, with females showing slightly high edge on coachability compared to their male counterparts. All these ladies had good Intelligence Quotient (IQ), however, I noticed them having this special ability of “connectedness” towards their own-self and others. I found them having high Emotional Intelligence or Emotional Quotient (EQ) that includes self-consciousness, social skills, and empathy. Men tend to rationalize more and when they are task-driven, they demonstrate less sensitivity to their surroundings and people. However, females are able to “connect” those different aspects of EQ more and bring efficient results for themselves and for others around. They tend to put their ego aside, seek help, ask questions (a sign of intelligence) and willing to get their hands dirty when it comes to complete a task.
Women often face two major hurdles when it comes to empowerment. They are
- Sense of guilt while practicing freedom of choice
How to address these issues? Emotional Intelligence provides us two ways to handle these issues: a) Individually – Utilize the techniques of self-awareness and empathy yourself, and b) Collectively – get help working with others by developing social and interpersonal skills.
Guilt: Let us analyze why we feel guilty while acting upon our freedom of choice. Guilt is a feeling that is tightly connected to our own belief and value systems. When we wish to try something different from our own set of values/beliefs, we feel some form of internal conflict. Also, there may be some deep-rooted social and cultural stigma attached to it. So how to overcome guilty consciousness? We require some “internal” work to overcome this problem. Developing a sense of self-awareness will eventually help us to break the physical and mental barriers we created for ourselves. Some of the effective tools that can build our self-awareness are yoga, meditation, breathing exercises and mindfulness. These tools are originally from the east and they connect our mind, body, and consciousness together to make us aware of our own nature/self and others. Once our barriers are gone, we start making intelligent choices and gradually set ourselves free from the feeling of guilt.
Discrimination: How to address the discrimination/inequality issue? One of the best methods to address discrimination is to work on our mindset and perception about this complex issue. At the end of the day, we should understand that we are all different and have different ways of working in this world. As Mahatma Gandhi said, “if we can’t change the world we can at least change ourselves (paraphrased)”. Together with the mindset, empathy is one of the powerful Emotional Intelligence tools that help women to address discrimination issue efficiently. Empathy can be broadly categorized into three types: a) Cognitive – Ability to understand how the other person sees things; b) Sympathy – Willing to help others who are in need and c) Emotional – Feeling what others feel. Intriguingly, women tend to excel in all the three different types and thus cultivate harmony/peace at workplace and home.
To conclude, empowerment is an “internal” phenomenon and we all need to work on our self-belief, self-love, self-trust, self-confidence and self-realization to lead a happy and balanced life.
I wrote this article for Mind Her Business magazine: http://bit.ly/2Ak7N1E