Womanity has come a long way. We, as a collective whole, are enjoying many things today that women back then didn’t even dare dream to have access to. We’re voting, leading countries, driving cars, and building businesses that do just as well as any other business in whatever industry we choose to be a part of. Sadly, despite all of these huge leaps and major advances, gender inequality still exists and there is no place where this issue is more rampant than the workplace.
Aside from the issue on gender pay gap and equal pay, sexual harassment, fewer career progression opportunities for women, and occupational gender segregation are issues that women today still have to face within the workplace.
But, don’t lose hope! The good news is that we’re all fighting the good fight and we have very capable ladies to lead the way. In the meantime, here are a few things that you can do yourself to thrive as a working woman.
Being assertive is different from being aggressive; always remember that. It doesn’t mean fighting everyone who disagrees with you or rubbing your ideas in everyone’s faces whenever you have the chance to do so. Rather, it means communicating your thoughts and ideas more clearly, speaking with more confidence, and being more participative. Doing this will help you boost your self-confidence, earn the respect of those around you, and stand out.
Take hold of your emotions.
Crying at work isn’t bad. Sometimes, having a good cry about something that deeply upsets you is the only way to let out the steam when you’ve been boiling from within. Unfortunately, some people still see crying as a sign of weakness and they’ll look down on you and tag you as a crybaby if they see you doing it. Instead of bawling your eyes out for everyone to see, take a deep breath, ask to be excused, and find yourself a good, private spot where you can let it all out.
The same goes for when you’re mad. Don’t throw a tantrum because your idea got rejected (even though you know it’s very good), and don’t go around telling your co-workers what a jerk your boss has been for asking you to work late for three consecutive days. There is a right avenue for voicing out concerns and complaints — take your issues there instead.
When we let our emotions get the best of us, clear communication goes out the window. We tend to say things we don’t really mean and we end up looking immature which leads people to think that we’re not capable of handling and conducting ourselves accordingly.
Don’t expect people to know what you’re thinking or feeling just by the face you make or the reactions you show. Speak up and speak clearly. It’s the only way to establish a good line of communication between you and the people around you in the workplace. Let them know when what they’re saying or doing offends you or affects you a certain way. Don’t be combative about it; calmly but clearly let them know what you’re thinking and how you’re feeling and don’t pass it off as a joke or make light of it as you end your statement.
Support other women in the workplace.
Nothing feels better than knowing that someone has your back. You don’t need to have a formal girl group or an exclusive clique. Just be there when for your fellow female and do what you can to help when you see them in distress. Supporting other women in the workplace could be as simple as offering someone a tampon in the restroom when you see that they need one or offering to help out with an important task so they can make it in time for the deadline. The support you give to another woman, whoever it may be, can go a long way!
Why barely aim to survive when you can thrive? Being a working woman isn’t easy, but believing in yourself is one of the biggest things you can do to get through it all and rise to the top.