Today, we will discuss the second issue on our top four which is your “Support System”. For Women-In-Business especially this is huge! We have become a society of electronic calendars with no breathing room. The reality is that you probably do not consider how long it will take you to travel from appointment A to appointment B and then to make a stop at C to pick up the dry cleaning and a gallon of milk.
Many years ago, I taught a class called “SOS” which stood for “Study and Organizational Skills” to a group of 5th and 6th graders. They had their eyes opened when I had them take a paper plate and make it their own 24 hour clock and color in their own chunks of time and where their own time actually went. Big eye opener. I have also done this with my clients using a scheduler 24 hour clock segmented into 15 minute increments. I always started with sleep each and every day and then move slowly day by day into wake time, dressing, breakfast, commute time, etc. Another huge eye opener.
You see we have so over scheduled ourselves that a key component of “keeping us sane” is now missing for the most part in the American life of an adult. That is our “support system”. In times long gone by women visited each other and quilted, took care of their older relatives, baked, cooked and shared food on a regular basis, as they hung laundry out to dry on the clothes line that spoke to their neighbors, and so on. Then came our industrial modern technology revolution with all of the “time-saving” machines such as the washer and dryer, and today the “iming”, cell phone, “twitter”, instance conferencing via computer, computers, laptops etc.
But do we have any more time for the support of those we love and need?
The answer is “NO”. We have this support only if we “build it into” our lives. Drinks at a bar after work is not support…that is an escape mechanism from reality.
Think about those women that lift you up, that you feel good and happy with when you leave their presence, those friends who are there when you need help, real help not just a gripe session, who are those women? When was the last time you saw them? I bet just thinking about their name and getting a mental image gives you a small boost. That’s how you know they are the real deal.
Pick up the phone and call a couple of them, take in their voice, let that voice support you. Ask for a date this next week when you purposely set aside time to see them for a long lunch, or even a bag lunch in a local park.
Reconnect and set a date say the third Thursday of the month to have lunch and each of you take out your blackberry and schedule today, for the rest of the year. Make that support system a priority!