The answer to getting more done and leading a balanced life isn’t in beating yourself up about ambitions.
We’ve entered a new paradigm. One in which women, particularly in the West, have greater opportunity than ever before and yet are feeling stressed out, anxious, and exhausted trying to cope with the pressure to succeed in all areas of life. Despite external success, many women have a feeling of not measuring up or being good enough. Other women are leaning in so strongly that they are burning out. It’s a catch-22: how do we lean in without burning out?
Research shows bright girls are particularly likely to see their abilities as innate and unchangeable, and they grow up to be women who are far too hard on themselves—women who will prematurely conclude that they don’t have what it takes to succeed in a particular arena and give up way too soon.
Our experience is that women blame themselves. Therefore, many women are reading Lean In and thinking “Oh, I guess I wasn’t leaning in hard enough, I need to push myself even more.”
Here are the tenets for how to lean in without burning out:
The Women’s Campaign School at Yale is training more women to run for office—and win.
The numbers aren’t pretty.
According to the National Women’s Political Caucus, of the 535 seats in the 113th U.S. Congress, just 18.5%—or 99 members—are women. In 2013, just 24.1%,of the 7,383 state legislators in the United States were women.
But a New Haven, Conn. nonprofit is doing its best to change that. The Women’s Campaign School at Yale isn’t officially a part of the storied university, but its alumna are similarly distinguished. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (NY) and former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (AZ) have completed the rigorous, hands-on campaign training that is designed to teach women how to run a successful political campaign.
The video above is a trailer for the film She Started It – a documentary, co-directed by journalists Insiyah Saeed and Nora Poggi, which follows four different female founders, as they create new startups.
Betabrand, San Francisco-based e-commerce company, is showcasing a group of smart women in it’s newest assortment of spring clothing. But you won’t see just any smarties are appearing in Betabrand’s pants. “We sought out women with doctorates,” cofounder Chris Lindland tells CoCreate. You’ll see them reading or riding on the back of a motorbike, sporting stretch selvedge denim or shirtwaist dresses that range in price from $80 to $178. “Is it an industry first to focus on only the brainiest women? My guess: Yes.”