All throughout school, university and my various employments I have established a strong group of friends. Girls that I could rely on for laughs, information, support and guidance. These were the people that I turned to when I first had thoughts of completely changing my career and setting up my own business.
So why was it that when I took the plunge and quit my job, I started to isolate myself? Call it stubbornness or pride, but I was determined to do it on my own. And whilst I am so proud of all that I’ve done, when I look back I realise how much easier it would have been, and maybe even how much further I could have come, had I called upon my Tribe of women for help along the way.
I’ve always been a believer that things happen for a reason and people come into your life at just the right moment. Meeting Siobhan, founder of ToGetHer Further, is total proof of this. During my first year of setting up Aegle Mind I was temping alongside to help financially support my business. I had a one day role as receptionist at Battersea Power Station. Now this one day of mine, happened to be Siobhan’s last day. We exchanged greetings over the reception desk and I politely asked her about the new job she was moving to. With no job lined up as such and not entirely sure herself, Siobhan (thankfully!) took the risk and told me her plans and dreams. My eyes lit up as every word resonated deep inside of me. It was brilliant! That evening I joined ToGetHer Further on Facebook and was reminded of the beauty in collaboration, friendship and support.
I have turned to ToGetHer Further and similar networks for guidance and advice many times since joining the group. I have also started to share the ups and downs of my journey on instagram and the response I receive from my followers is incredibly uplifting. It’s taken me some time to understand and value the importance of having a strong community of women around me but I’ve come to see it almost as a necessity to my success, happiness and life fulfillment.
There are so many reasons behind finding your tribe so I’ve listed my top ten below:
1. Belief in You
Sometimes things seem to go your way with everything within your reach. Otherdays, those dreams and goals seem like an impossible fantasy. When you find yourself feeling low or hopeless, reach out to your girl community for support. They know your strengths and talents, but even more importantly, they believe in you (probably more than you believe in yourself!)
2. The Honest Truth
Yes you need support and love, but you also need someone who is going to be honest with you and tell you when you’ve f****d up! This isn’t about tearing one another down - the total opposite in fact. Having women around you who’s only objective are to see you succeed means they will call you out when make a bad call or mess up. We’re only human and we’re going to make mistakes so listen to what your tribe has to say.
3. You Are Accountable
If you are a lone ranger you are the only one accountable for yourself so you can slack or procrastinate until the cows come home. Sharing your goals with your friends gives them the opportunity to encourage you on and praise your work. It also ensures you keep performing to achieve your dreams. When I need accountability or objectivity, I know to turn to my community networks.
4. Collective Wisdom
The most helpful thing about finding your community is the amount of wisdom you gain. No one person has all the answers to everything, but put some heads together and you gain infinite wealth of information. Never be afraid to ask friends or peers for their advice and feedback or to consult with someone experienced. If you need some advice join Blooming Founders - someone always has the answer you need!
5. Community of Creation
When you surround yourself with like-minded people you increase the number of ideas generated. Everyone looks at a problem or challenge from a different perspective giving you varied options to choose from. More often than not there will be solutions you’ve never even thought off.
6. Find Extra Motivation
Ever have those days where everything seems too much? Turn to your community of women and you will see that everyone feels like that some, or a lot, of the time. Be inspired by your girl tribe and feed off their energy when yours is failing. There will come a time when you give someone else that motivational support.
7. Reach for the Stars
It’s easy to cruise along or even give up when you work alone. Surrounding yourself with like minded people encourages you to dream bigger and push harder. Who said a little competition was bad for the soul?
8. Caring is Sharing
Supporting another person for no other reason than wishing them the best is an incredibly rewarding and uplifting feeling. When you are there for someone else along their journey with guidance, advice and encouragement you’ll find the support coming back to you when you need it most.
9. Reduce Your Stress
Unlike men who respond to stressful situations with the fight or flight response, women pursue relationship in what has been coined the “tend or befriend” response. Studies have shown that the hormone oxytocin is released as part of the stress response which triggers an immediate desire in women to seek and maintain relationships. This sense of community is a natural, biological coping method to stress and anxiety.
10. Prescription of Friendship
Human beings are by nature social beings who thrive in communities. Research has shown a clear link between isolation and an increased risk of mental health issues. Countless studies have proven that community and a strong social network contributes living a long, happy and healthier life.
So quit struggling at whatever it is alone and find yourself your Tribe!
If you're looking for a like minded community based in London, then why not come along to one of my meditation classes or workshops.
Love as always,
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