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Young Women Leaders

Archive for the tag “sisterhood”

Lasting friendships makes strong support

In Sweden we celebrate Christmas on the 24th of December, so while everybody else is now busy with the stuff you do on the 25th I am hanging out in my pj´s, eating leftover smörgåsbord and watching the snow fall. Tonight is the eve of the returners in Sweden, those who have left their original city and moved elsewhere. We meet up in the bars and restaurants, catching up, hopefully running into some people we want to see and avoiding those we are happy to avoid.

I am meeting up with the person that has known me and been my friend for the longest time, Maria. We got to know each other during confirmation camp when we were 14 years old, and we have been with each other through thick and thin, crisis, moving, boyfriends, studies, family and basically everything else.

It is a very special type of friendship that forms when you have known a person for that long, in our case over then years (are we really that old???). I know her 14-year old persona and she knows mine, and we have known the people we have been and stopped being, and the person inside that never ceased to exist.

The thing with such relationships is that I don´t have to doubt that she really likes me, I mean she´s been with me for this long! 🙂 We have seen the good and the bad happen, and with this deep friendship there are many things that are easier to accept with each other I believe. I don´t get annoyed with her as easily because I know her and her background, the events that made her who she is and what she has done in her life. Rather, I appreciate all of that.

In times of trouble she has been there, and she´s never farther than a phone call away (even though we sometimes play phone tag for weeks) when I am feeling down or need support. She manages to make me think new thoughts just because she has another perspective and she knows me well enough to be able to give me concrete advice.

The deep and lasting friendships can handle that we don´t see each other for months at a time. But we have a core together, memories together, and the ambition to really make something in life that unites us.

If there is one thing a young woman in leadership needs, I think it is the friends, the sisters, the forgiving , accepting and inspiring people around us that supports us when we fall, inspire us when we are out of thoughts and hold us when life is too rough for us to handle.

And you know what? They look good too. This is us, summer of 2010.

Hanna

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How to be kind to awesome women that annoys you

Sometimes I am surprised by how much it annoys me that I dislike another woman. Look, other people that are annoying through and through I have no problem not caring about, because I have nothing in common with them, they´re not in my field, and hence I usually have no problem letting them be annoying and treating them nicely. 

But I have realized a scary part of my own behavior with other amazing women. If they are much like me we become friends and we support and value each other. But if there´s something in our our personalities that clash I have a hard time avoiding becoming annoyed. 
This is jealousy, right? I see another fabulous woman, she is seemingly perfect, beautiful and funny. But I dislike her for no real reason. 

And inside myself I get even more annoyed with myself because it is hard for me to support this amazing woman. Be it she may not be my friend, but she is doing a helluva great job at what she´s doing. Those are women I would logically like to support and those are the ones I would technically like to have around me. 

So here´s my list of how to be kind to awesome women that annoys you:
– Get to know her better. Sure, she may be intimidating or you think you won´t like her, but in my experience, the more you get to know a person, the more you will get used to him/her and that will lead you to accept him/her. 
– Think of things you are great at. “Sure, I haven´t (insert cool thing other woman does), but I write great speeches/run fast like frick/I am great at making small talk.”
–  Consider things you can ask her to help you with and maybe you can exchange some knowledge (bc you probably know stuff she would like to know as well). Showing that you are interested in what she does and would like to learn will flatter the other person, she will let her guard down (if she has it up) and you can be more casual around each other. (I mean, let´s be honest, how happy are you not when people ask you to explain EXACTLY what it is that you do? Myself, I can talk for hours).
– Ask another friend for help on how to deal with the situation. I have found so often that my friends have another opinion of the person, and then that makes it easier for me to like them. 

More advice? Throw them my way!

And yes, you are amazing. And that other woman can be your friend. 
Hanna

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