Being an entrepreneur has many challenges, but there is one that can destroy YOU if you are not careful.
Let me explain. I am a very independent person. I largely move through my business and life fairly fluidly and have no problem ticking off my to-do list. I have had friends come and go. Some of them incredibly close. But most of the time I believed that I had to take care of myself. “Be your own rock!” I would say. “No one is going to do it for you!”
Then something happened that changed me.
A series of very difficult personal life events showed me that I wasn’t allowing myself to receive! I was an island in the middle of stress, loneliness and burnout. I was trying to be everything for everyone without giving anyone the joy of being something real for me.
I spent most of my time alone and for much of that time I felt as though I was lacking the deep friendships that I needed.
So, I decided to create a circle of women (and some men) around me. My goal was to create an environment that we can all …individually and together… thrive.
Here’s Why Women Need Tribes!
- We inherited the need. – If you think back in history, you will remember that women raised the babies together, washed the laundry, cooked and even helped each other laugh in large groups. We were created us to be inter-dependent. The idea of independence being necessary to be a fierce and strong woman has only been around for the last few decades. And if “alone against the world” is what makes me great, then NO THANKS. It’s freaking lonely!
- Your vows didn’t include “I will be everything you need!”. Your partner, husband or boyfriend did not sign up to be everything you need. Hell, when you took those commitments to each other, I bet you didn’t sign up to be everything to them did you? What happens when they piss you off, and you need to vent? Who are you going to talk to then?
- You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with. If you want to change your life, in a radical way, surround yourself with examples of what you want to become. (read more on this here) Want to live deeper and engage in deeper conversations with the people who are talking about more meaningful topics? Don’t let the limitations of those around you keep you from your growth.
- We just want more fun! Life is full of stress, heartbreak, depression and isolation. Our job as the nurturers we were created to be, is to find ways to lighten things up with laughter, fun and connection. Ever had a terrible day and called a friend and suddenly both of you end up laughing so hard you cry? Fun is important.
- Accountability partners rule – well at least they won’t let you off the hook. Even though I thought I was self-motivated, there were little things that I began to see in my behaviors. If I didn’t have my tribe to call me on my bullshit, negativity or self-limiting thoughts, I would not be as successful today. I let others know what my real desires were in life and business, and they remind me of those conversations when I get off track.
- If you give it all away there is nothing left for you? A dear friend and coach once said to me, “You are going to drive yourself bat-shit crazy unless you do something for yourself once in a while.” She was right. I went crazy, right before I found that I needed my tribe.
- Don’t be selfish! We tend to have the idea that it is better for others to receive. When we are offered something we hear ourselves saying “oh no, not me” “I couldn’t possible take that from you” ”That would be selfish of me” When that demon rears its head, you need to remember this. You are only selfish when you continue to try to meet your needs in ways that aren’t effective. You are keeping those around you who care for you from gaining the joy of being there for you. Now that’s selfish!
Once I realized I needed to stop the isolation cycle, and take time to build a group of lovely humans, and some not so human, tribe members. I felt more uplifted, focused, clear and fulfilled. Today, I could not imagine my life without them.
How did you realize you needed a tribe? Go ahead girl, slap that “Oh no not me” in the face, and share your story below in the comments.