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How to Get Out Of Your Own Way

How to Get Out Of Your Own Way

Earlier this year, Frances McDormand's Oscar acceptance speech ended with a call for an "inclusion rider," intended to increase diversity in Hollywood.

We need this same mentality in corporate America. And I don't just mean that large corporations and men need to create a more inclusive environment. Women do, too.

I have spoken with too many women lately - clients, friends, and former colleagues - who have shared stories with me about "mean girls" at work. We all know them. Maybe it's your boss, your peer, or even your friend.

[Related: How to Deal With Jerks at Work Without Becoming One]

This type of woman takes subtle (and sometimes overt) digs at you that make you question your value, your expertise, and your worthiness to even speak up and share your ideas.

In these situations, there are two things we as women should do:

  1. Don't be THAT woman. Don't be jealous of another woman's success. Don't let your own insecurity turn you into a "mean girl."
  2. Don't let yourself get affected by this type of BS. And it IS absolutely BS.

If you let this BS get to you, as my client recently told me, you will just keep bashing your head over and over on the glass ceiling. And no one needs that.

[Related: To Shatter Glass Ceilings, Spread These Four Messages to Young Women]

So here's what you can do:

  1. Realize that moving up the corporate ladder and achieving success is not a zero-sum game. Your success does not come at the expense of someone else's (and vice versa). There's enough room for all of us at the table.
  2. Stop comparing yourself to other people.
  3. Quit resenting people who get credit for your ideas or get more attention or praise than you do.
  4. Check your pride and ego at the door.
  5. Let this BS be the fuel to up your game and show up in a new way.

Yeah, I know, that's A LOT to ask. It may even seem unfair. And it's not always simple or easy.

But it certainly doesn't need to be SO hard. You don't need to feel less than, bullied, or like an outsider. You have too much to offer.

[Related: Seven Things Bad*ss Professional Women Don't Do]


Elena Lipson is the Principal and Founder of Mosaic Growth Partners, a consulting and coaching firm based in Washington, D.C.

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