I remember many years ago at a Women’s Conference,
One of our senior women executives said that she wanted to work on
Making more girlfriends.
At the time, that seemed so odd to me.
Here she was, such a talented, successful women.
How could she not have ‘enough’ girlfriends?
Fast forward, seven or so years later and I totally get it.
It’s can be lonely at the top.
But not for the reasons we may think.
At least not always.
Many women believe it’s lonely at the top because there are so few other colleagues who we can talk through our challenges with. That may be true.
Many women believe it’s lonely at the top because there are so few others who understand the complications of leading a business and a family. That may be true.
And many women believe it’s lonely at the top because there are so few others who we can legitimately share our challenges with, without violating transparency and confidentiality; that may also be true.
For my clients and associates, who run and lead successful organizations, loneliness can also be found when we realize that the simplicity of life’s conversations no longer satisfy us.
Loneliness is experienced by many executive women, when they find there are so few of them to connect with.
Because, like us, they are ridiculously busy.
Most of my clients (especially those who join me in Hawaii) say the number one thing they want more of in their lives is more deep, authentic connection with other women.
- They want to be heard and have meaningful dialog about things that matter.
- They want to be listened to and understood all at the same time.
- They want to get as much energy from other women as they give to the women who surround them every day.
- They want their own energetic ‘fill-up’ station.
The busy-ness of a professional woman often means missing many of the social opportunities in their community.
So they fill up with professional obligations and tell themselves these connections are enough.
But they aren’t.
We want girlfriends.
But we want girlfriends who will work hard to relate and connect with us.
We want to be loved as we are and not have to pretend that we are interested in so-many-things that no longer entertain us.
It can be lonely.
But it can be remedied.
Finding other executive women who share your deep desire for connection is available, but often it means that you (we) have to go first… we have to be the first to reach out and ask for the connection.
Your energy and your time are so valuable.
Seek out opportunities and other women who will match your interests and values.
They are out there. But, just like you, they are putting the work of finding you on the back burner.
Create the space in your life for new connections and friends. Girlfriends are a magical elixir for us all.
Invest in finding other women who ‘see’ you as soon as you walk in the door.