5 Lies all women entrepreneur should never believe

Having women in the workplace presents many benefits. However, when women are not empowered, can they truly reach their goals? When these women start falling under the false beliefs that they always have something to prove, that their opinion does not matter or that the whole world (especially men) is after them, it distracts them from reaching their full potential.

Here are a few lies women in business believe that keep them from being great

IF I ASK FOR HELP, THEY WILL THINK I AM TOO WEAK

It is clear that society puts pressure on us (especially with many feminist movements) to prove ourselves all the time. We want to show the world that we are not weaker than men and oftentimes, we tend to take way too much on our shoulders. As women entrepreneur, it is important to learn how to let go and ask for help when necessary. It is impossible to get everything done on your own. It is not that you are not good enough but, by surrounding yourself with the right people, you will be able to build strong partnerships that will increase your business’s chances of reaching success. Do not be afraid or ashamed to ask for help or to ask to be mentored. True strength is shown in your ability to recognize your weaknesses.

 

HAVING CHILDREN (A FAMILY) WILL DECREASE MY CHANCES OF REACHING SUCCESS

Many women are afraid even desire a family life while pursuing their career. As women, we have he right to be successful AND have a family. One does not exclude the other. It is important to stop believing the lie that having a baby or being a wife will make you less of a business woman. Whether you are employed and pregnant or thinking about enlarging your family, you need to know your rights and not allow anybody to make you believe false information. Being a woman with responsibilities at home might even make you a better leader, listener and organizer. Of course this is not the case for everybody but it does give you qualities that can be beneficial in the workplace.

FEMALE COLLEAGUES ARE MY ENEMIES

Society has trained us to see people as competition. Whether it is in the workplace or on the market, women often see other women as competition instead of potential partners. This idea that every other woman is after you is false. If we learn to work together instead of against each other, we will become stronger and reach higher goals.

IF I VOICE MY OPINION, I WILL BE PERCEIVED AS BEING Bossy

I have heard a saying once while reading Girl Boss By Sophia Amoruso. It said: “When a man takes control he is the boss. when a woman does, she is seen as being bossy.” It is a lie to think that you cannot voice your opinions because you fear what others will think of you. If you have been placed were you are for a purpose, it means that you are fully equipped to add value to the company you work for or the one you own. If you know an idea will benefit your team, do not keep it to yourself. You have the right to share your greatness with the world.

I ALWAYS NEED TO BE BETTER THAN EVERYONE ELSE

While it is a great thing to give it your all and challenge yourself, it is not a good thing to always feel like you have something to prove. Because women have been seen as “less then enough” for so long, I understand that you might feel like you need to push the limits all the time. However, this is only a source of distraction. When you believe the lie that you always need to be the best at everything, you fail giving your full attention to the things you were always meant to be doing. You start wanting to fed your ego more than you want to make a positive impact and truly feel fulfilled.

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Ann-Sophie Ovile, Writer, Shortstints

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Ways volunteering will make you a better employee

In my opinion, every great employee needs to have served at some point. Serving humbles us and teaches us so many life lessons. You can serve through community work, interning, helping out and more.

 

Here are a few ways volunteering will make you a better employee:

Volunteering will teach you how to focus on the work first

Because you will know how it is to work for free, you will be more prone to focus on the job that needs to be done. Getting paid is important but the job becomes easier when you see past the paycheck. Volunteering will teach you to find a sense of purpose in what you do and this alone will make you a better employee

RELATED:5 THINGS TO DO AFTER GRADUATION OTHER THAN WORKING FULL TIME

Volunteering humbles you

Volunteering will draw you closer to humanity. Working for those in needs will make you more compassionate. This will make you a better colleague and employee. It will help you see others before seeing yourself. You will learn to compromise, to listen and give the best of yourself.

Volunteering teaches you how to work in team

When you volunteer, you have to follow a team vision . This will come in handy when you will need to work with different bosses and colleagues. Team spirit is something everybody needs to develop in their work environment in order to become better employees.

ALSO RELATED:HOW TRAVELING WILL MAKE YOU A BETTER ENTREPRENEUR

Volunteering helps you adapt faster

By immersing yourself in new environments more frequently, volunteering will help you program your brain to adapt to new environments, people and cultures. The ability to learn quickly and to adapt is a quality many employers are looking for in candidates. Keep in mind that most recruiters want to lower their employee integration costs . The quicker you can adapt to your new environment and new ways of doing things, the better it will be.

It is a great way to network

By volunteering, you’ll build your network with other people who, just like you want to keep learning and making a positive impact. In the business world, whether you are an employer or an employee, it is important to build a strong network of people with whom you will be able to exchange ideas, the best ways of reaching your objectives and more. Staying inspired at all times is an ingredient that will help you become the best version of yourself as an employee.

 

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Ann-Sophie Ovile, Writer, Shortstints

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How can I let my boss know I am burned out?/Need a break

One week you can be on top on the game, delivering projects before the deadlines, sharing ideas and making things happen. The other, you find yourself putting your keys in the fridge… burnouts happen. They are a gentle (sometimes rough) reminders that we are not made of stone.

When you are burned out, you feel it in your body, in your emotions and in your spirit. It is crucial in those times, to learn to slow down and breathe. However, it is not always easy to approach our boss and let him know that we need a break. Psychologically, we tend to be afraid of what people will think if we are not constantly working. we fear our boss will think we are just lazy or that we are not a good fit for the job. This leads us to refrain from expressing ourselves, getting even more drained and delivering poor performances.

How can you tell your boss you need a break?

EVALUATE YOUR WORKLOAD FIRST

Take the time to evaluate your work load before approaching your boss. You might realize that, maybe you need to manage your time better. It is important to have your fact straight before going forward with a complaint. List all of the things you get done in a day, the different projects you are working on, your break times and more. This will allow you to have a clearer vision of things and see why you are feeling overwhelmed.

Related:

How to feel relaxed and energized at work?

 

MAKE IT CLEAR THAT IT IS VERY IMPORTANT

Busy bosses tend to avoid one on one conversation. They are always running somewhere, avoiding these kinds of talk. Make sure you let them know as clearly as you can how important this talk is to you and schedule a time and day to sit down and discuss. Make sure they have your full attention and let them know how you feel.

ENCOURAGE YOUR BOSS TO PROPOSE A SOLUTION

After you have clearly listed the reasons why you are overwhelmed with your workload and have approached your boss about it, it is time to find a concrete solution. let your boss talk first so that you can get an idea of what he thinks he could do to make it easier for you. – It is also important that you share your opinion. Show your boss that you have taken some time to think this through and that you are ready to propose realistic solutions

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How to Enjoy Your Vacation Without Work Getting in the Way

BE HONEST WITH YOURSELF

Do not be afraid to tell him/her what you think will help you get back on your feet. If you need 2 weeks off, do not say you just need one so you can look stronger than you really are. Be honest with yourself, acknowledge your weaknesses and be transparent. If you’re a high-achiever with inflexible personal standards, it’ll be harder for you to put your responsibilities to one side and prioritize your well-being. But that’s what you need to do to start moving through this.

It is important to listen to your body and know when it is asking you to slow down. It is better to stop now than to be forced to stop when it is too late.

Ann-Sophie Ovile, Writer, Shortstints

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How to Stay Motivated While Working From Home

`Working from home presents many advantages: independence, more time for your hobbies, less stress, and more. However, working from the comfort of your home can also be challenging. You can’t hide from the procrastination ghost, this is why it is important to find ways to stay motivated even while you work from your bed.

Don’t be a Couch Potatoe

While sitting on your couch might sound comfortable, it can negatively impact your negativity. Make sure you set up a working space in your home where you will be able to work without falling asleep or getting distracted. It could be a desk in corner of your room, somewhere you feel comfortable and let your creativity take over.

Take a Shower

It may be tempting to stay in your pajamas all day while working from home. After all, who needs to shower when you can have business meetings with no pants on, right? However, the simple act of taking a shower can make you feel more refreshed and ready to tackle your responsibilities.

Have a Stay at Home Working Schedule

When it comes to working from home, avoid going with the flow. Planning your days ahead is a major key to your success. Prepare a calendar, set goals, and have an action plan. Remember, failing to plan is planning to fail.

Avoid Distractions

Put your phone on silence and stay away from things that will distract you from your work. Avoid working in front of the TV or having many tabs open while you’re working. The goal is to truly act as if you are completing a normal shift. This way, you won’t struggle to meet your deadlines, your work will be more organized, and you will truly benefits of the advantages that the freelance life offers.

Do What You Love

When you do what you love, it will be easier for you to focus. It is important to find what you are passionate about and not only focus on the advantages of staying home. Truth is, even working from home can get boring if you don’t enjoy what you do.

Related:

How to make sure you pick the career you love?

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Ann-Sophie Ovile, Writer, Short Stints 

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How to Create a Post-Pregnancy friendly Environment in Your Office

 

According to studies, many women do not get back to work after having their child. Many factors can be taken into consideration when trying to understand the reason for behind this fact: mommy’s guilt, exhaustion, and more. This leads to believe that creating a kid-friendly environment at work would encourage young mothers to get back on track with their personal life without feeling guilty of abandoning their newborn. Here are a few ways managers encourage moms to come back to the office.

Be Understanding

If there is one thing mothers need, it is to be understood. Make sure your HR department is ready to listen to their concerns, answer questions about maternity leave, and make them feel at ease. When mothers feel understood, it will create a healthy communication environment and increase their chances of coming back after their maternity leave.

Be Ready to Welcome Kids in the Office

This might not be an easy change but it is important to create an environment where kids can be welcomed if there is a need to. This could imply asking mothers to pay a small fee and have a staff responsible for taking care of children. Having their kids close to them will make mothers feel more at ease and help them do their work without worrying too much.  In addition, it will show them that you value them enough to offer benefits that match their needs.

Organize a Baby Shower & Welcome Back Party

Throwing a baby shower or welcome back party is one of the best ways to show moms are valued in the company. It is important to make them feel like their pregnancy does not allignated them from the working environment. Instead, celebrate this important event of their lives and make them feel like they are part of the family.

Respect Time Outside of Work

If your employee just came back from maternity leave, it is not the time to give them excessive work loads that will keep them from spending time with their family. Being as understanding as possible and help them manage their time in a way to avoid overtime and stress.

Related:

Employed and pregnant : Things you need to know

Taking the time create a friendly environment for new mothers will decrease your chances of losing valuable employees, will show that you value women in the workplace, and help you attract top female candidates.

 

Ann-Sopie Ovile, writer, Short Stints

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How to Balance Family Life and Work

 

 

 

 

Finding time for your family can get challenging when work comes in the way. You might find it more and more difficult to keep up with your home duties when your workload is increasing. However, even in this case, finding your balance is crucial. You won’t be able to be as productive as you know your family’s needs are unmet. According to Black Enterprise, nearly 58% of managers in the U.S. work more than 40 hours every week. This number is scary considering the fact that being overwhelmed with work can have many negative side effects: fatigue, illness, and destruction of families. This is why it is important to find ways to create a schedule that will allow you to get the job done while still being there for your important family moments.

Delegate

Delegating has many benefits  When you try handling everything on your own, you will most likely end up anxious, overwhelmed, and burned out. Inside the company, there will always be more things to do, things to change, clients to acquire, and so on. Truth is, the list will only get longer. The smartest attitude to have in the situation is to identify where each of your employees fits best in order for your team to work smarter instead of harder. When you delegate, you will be able to let go, trust your team more, and as a result, have more time for your loved ones.

Set Boundaries

It is important to set clear boundaries between your work life and your personal life. Things won’t magically happen, so you need to plan ahead. Set up the time when you want to start working and the time when you will stop. For example, you can decide to start work every day at 9 am and stop working every day at 6 pm. By doing so, you intentionally dedicate your mornings to your family (for breakfast together, prayer, or else) and save your evenings to talk about your day, have dinner together, and do things that will make you guys closer. Remember, it is important to be strict about the boundaries you set. It can be so easy to check up your emails as soon as you wake up or take your work to bed with you. Make sure you create a habit of separating your work time from your family time.

List your Priorities

Often times, the main cause of frustration is the failure to prioritize. When you do not prioritize, every task will collide and leave you frustrated and overwhelmed. When you take the time to list your responsibilities and place them by order of priority, you will have a clearer vision of what you should attack each day. This will leave you feeling more satisfied and at peace and as a result, you will have the peace and time you need to enjoy time with your family. When your brain is automatically thinking about things to do and deadlines that need to be met, you will always be thinking about work, and you will be unable to focus on your family. Many business men and women are physically at home but their minds and heart are unable to connect with their loved ones because they are always worried about work. If you truly want to create a healthy balance in your life, you need to be organized and set your priorities straight.

Build a Strong Team of Employees

When your staff is not competent, you will always be worrying about whether the work is done right or not. This will turn you into a micro-manager and as a result, cause you to spend too much time worrying about how your employees are executing the work. One of the keys to freedom in finding the right balance is to make sure you can trust your team to get the job done. When you are able to let go and let your staff do their job, you will have more time to focus on other things.

Related: 

5 tips to make sure you hire the right person

When you delegate, hire the right team and set clear boundaries will increase your chances of creating the perfect balance of your work life and family life.

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Can you be friends with your coworker?

Whether or not coworkers should become friends is a question many have debated over the years. When you become friends with one or more coworkers, the job becomes more pleasant as it is not only about the responsibilities anymore but about companionship and team work. A friendly work environment promotes creativity and helps employees reach higher goals together. However, while becoming friends with your coworker presents advantages, there are also some cons that could create an obstacle to your personal and professional development.

You should not mix your personal and professional life

Mixing these two can be tricky. You might not want your colleagues to know everything happening in your personal life and this is totally normal. It is important to build your boundaries form day one and becoming friends with your colleagues can make this a little more difficult. You do not want to have to explained why “you never accepted that friend request”. While it is pleasant to be friends with people in your workplace, the con is that it will become more difficult to keep your private life private.

 

Beware of the spirit of competition

Remember that, we are first human. When evolving and growing in a certain work environment, it becomes common for colleagues to aspire to certain positions. When two colleagues-friends target the same objective, the situation can quickly become awkward. You will start becoming shady, which can build tension in the workplace– Do not let the awkwardness build. Be open about what you both want and be transparent. Also avoid keeping important information to yourself. For example, if your boss lets you know that the deadline for the position has been changed, do not pretend that you did not know in order to avoid telling your coworker. However, being as diplomatic will be more difficult if there are emotions involved.

 

You may become unprofessional

Many recruiters avoid hiring two people from the same circle because being around someone you get along “too well” in the workplace can quickly become a source of distraction. Regular chit chats, stopping by your coworker’s desk a little too often or simple gossips between you, can quickly become an issue. It is nice to have someone you can talk to, laugh with and vent to, but it is important to remember that works comes first. Do not let your personal relations with your colleagues cause you to lose your professionalism. Avoid spending too much time on things that are not related to your job and that can make you miss your deadlines!

Related:

These 4 habits will make you seem very unprofessional in the workplace

 

There is no black and white answer when it comes to whether or not you should become friends with a coworker. It is up to you to take the time analyze the situation and see if it will benefit you or simply cause trouble. In the workplace, work comes first so make sure that no relationship hinders your ability to live this statement.

 

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Ann-Sophie Ovile, Writer, Short Stints

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SOS…I need to manage my time better

Time management is hard. The week starts, and all of a sudden, we find ourselves juggling with so many different things. So many things to do, so little time. But it is important to learn how to manage our days in a way that will help us be more productive and fruitful. This is why time management is a tool that we all, especially entrepreneurs and employees should take the time to develop.

Plan your days

Having an agenda is they key to a better planing. If you do not feel like managing your own calendars, hiring an assistant might be a good alternative. When you plan out your days, you will feel less tired and find it easier to prioritise.

Work Smarter, Not Harder

Instead of doing more at work, you can manage your time better by taking the time to list your daily activities and see what should be done differently, what should be eliminated and what could be done at a different time of the day. Remember it is not about how much you do but about how well you do what you do that will set you apart as an employee.

Focus more

Focusing on one thing at a time will help you manage your time better and make sure you finish what you start. While multitasking is inevitable sometimes, it is best to concentrate our focus and energy on one thing and get it done properly.

Get some rest over the week-end

Week-ends are the best guarantee that we will start our week on the right foot. Instead of overdoing it and feeling even more drained throughout the week, take this time to rest, do things you love and clear your mind. Taking time to renew your strengths over the week-end will help you mange your week better and have a clear idea of what your goals should be.

Learn to say “no”

Nothing is as freeing as realising you do not need to say Yes to everything. Often, at work, we feel overwhelmed because we think that we need to do it all. There is nothing wrong with telling your colleague you can’t help them with a particular task or to ask your boss to push back a deadline that is unrealistic to respect. By learning when to say No, you will have more time for the more important things and as a result, manage your time better.

Start your days early

Being late at work has the power to negatively affect your whole work schedule. Showing up early will help you feel more relaxed to tackle the day instead of rushing as soon as you enter the office.

Delegate

Delegating gives you more time to breathe and helps create harmony between you and the members of your team. When there is a task you need to accomplish, letting your teammates partake in the decision making and execution can help you manage your time better and have more time to focus on your area of expertise.

Take advantage of technology

Technology can help us save so much time if you take advantage of the wide list of services available to us on a daily basis. Try some of the many personal scheduling software programs that allow you to keep a calendar, “to-do’ lists, and phone and address books on your computer. Master Excel so that you can save precious hours when working on complicated documents.

Take small breaks

Take small breaks between tasks. This does not mean that you need to be in the bathroom for 30 minutes or that you should leave the office. Reward yourself after each task with 2 minutes to walk a little around the office, going to get some water at the water cooler or exchanging a few words with a colleague. This will help you relax your mind so you can be refreshed before attacking the next task. When you jump from one task to another without taking breaks, you increase your chances of burnout, which will decrease your productivity and result in bad time management.

 

By managing your time properly, you will reduce stress and feel more relaxed and energized to tackle your responsibilities.

 

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Ann-Sophie Ovile, Writer, Short Stints

 

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Causes of stress in the workplace

 

Today, most Americans are suffering from moderate to high stress. Only 40% of Americans rate their health as very good or excellent according to the American Psychological Association

And work-related stress is a growing problem around the world. This issue affects not only employees’ health and well-being but also the productivity of businesses.

Some physical symptoms include:

  • Fatigue
  • Muscular tension
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia

These symptoms can lead to other psychological traumas: Depression, anxiety and irritability. There are many factors causing stress in the workplace. The quicker you can identify them, the faster you will be able to prevent or cure them.

Excessive workload: When an employee is constantly trying to respect deadlines and feels overwhelmed, it increases the stress level in your workplace. When employees are not able to cope with the demands, it will not only affect their self-esteem but also negatively impact their relationships at work. This can also be caused by a lack of communication between managers and colleagues. When employees are able to freely communicate their concerns and suggestions, they are able to find common ground and avoid unnecessary stress. When your employees have too much work, it keeps them from spending enough time with their family, which can lead to more stress at home and affect their overall performance in the workplace. Make sure employees have enough time to balance their personal and work life, as this will help them be more focused and productive at work.

 

Conflict: When employees from the same company do not get along, it has the potential to give birth to all sorts of stress. It is important for the HR department to make sure they provide assistance in case two or more employees need to resolve their conflicts. – Conflict in the workplace will not only affect their own performance but also the well-being of people around them.

 

Micromanagement: Micromanagement is one of the highest causes of stress in the workplace. When employees are micromanaged it creates tension between them and their supervisors and they feel undervalued. Plus, micromanagement makes employees uncomfortable and unsure about taking initiatives. This will lead to an unhealthy environment full of tension and uncertainty.

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Diagnosed with micromanagement? Here is how you can cure it.

No space for growth: When the company does not provide any space for employee growth and development, it produces stress as they do not feel like they are really advancing in their career and personal goals. This leads to a lack of motivation and sometimes isolation. Employees who do not feel like they have a chance to grow inside the company quickly become disengaged.

Remember that there are ways to reduce stress so that you can increase productivity and create a healthy work environment. Also keep in mind that being at the right company and finding the right job for you will greatly contribute to your overall well-being as an employee. Find the right job today on Shortstints.com

How can employers reduce stress in the workplace?

Ann-Sophie Ovile, Writer, Short Stints

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Employed and pregnant : Things you need to know

Pregnancy in the workplace is a greatly discussed subject. While measures have been taken throughout the years for equality in the workplace, there are still some obstacles women face when it comes to certain areas. As a woman, it is not only important to know your rights but you also need to be prepared for the things that are not mention in the “law”.

 

When it comes to pregnancy, many things can be subliminal and taboo. An employer, for example cannot fire a woman because she’s pregnant. However, some employers will try to find discrete ways to hide their discrimination. Some women have reported having been fired because of “the dangerous environment” when in reality, the boss simply did not know how to handle the situation. An employer cannot refuse you a job because you are pregnant except if the job itself will expose you to chemicals that could be harmful for you and the baby. But some recruiters tend to ask illegal questions during interviews.

If you are planning on getting pregnant, here are some ways you can plan ahead so it does not negatively impact your career.

Plan ahead/know your rights

Pregnancies are not always planned. However, if you think you might try to get pregnant in the near future, it is important that you plan ahead. You can start by talking to someone you trust in the HR department to tell them about your plans.

Get informed on your rights as a pregnant employee, how many sick days you are allowed to take during the year and the benefits that are offered for this case. If a company has a policy in place that, for employees with special needs (no matter what these needs may be), the company is also expected to provide reasonable accommodations to a pregnant woman who requires special attention (light duty, longer breaks) during her pregnancy. Make sure you know what your rights are ahead of time.

The United States is the only developed country that does not mandate some sort of paid maternity leave. While the Family and Medical Leave Act does require some employers to offer up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave to female and male employees for the birth and care of a newborn child, about42% of American workers are not covered by this law.

Respect your obligations

If you want to be treated fairly, it is also important to respect your obligations. There are times when your health might not allow you to work as much as you usually do. However, make sure you identify colleagues who will be able to help out. Be honest about how you feel. Do not hesitate to ask to push back deadlines if you realize you will not be able to finish the work.

Before you can say goodbye to work, you need to plan your maternity leave. About 4 weeks in advance, tell your boss the precise day you expect to stop working and a approximate date that you’ll be back. This will help your team prepare for your leave and see who can take on some of your responsibilities. Let them know how they can be able to contact you (and the time of the day they can contact you of course) in order to communicate important information with you. Truth is, you will have some days where you will probably be able to take care of certain things from home.

Manage your symptoms at work

You could ask to be placed not too far from the bathroom if this is something you need to use often during your pregnancy.

Remember everybody knows what symptoms comes with being pregnant. It is not a bad thing to prepare your bosses and colleagues. However, it is up to you to communicate clearly so that everybody knows what to expect (even to expect the unexpected).

 

Ann-Sophie Ovile, Writer, Short Stints

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