Recently, I participated in a conversation on the dynamics of relationships and tips on building them. The conversation reached across all faucets of our lives when it comes to relationships, from family to love to business. Of all the advice, tips, thoughts, and jokes that were spoken one of the topics that stuck out the most to me was – woman to woman relationships. Actually, the conversation seemed to focus more on the lack of woman to woman support, particularly among bloggers and in business.
There were many reasons given for why women do not support other women (outside of their family and very close friends) in their ventures. I have decided not to focus on the negative and focus how we can support one another through the avenues of social media. Whether female bloggers, authors, aspiring singers, entrepreneurs, or women moving up in the corporate world, here are ways we can all support one another online.
1. Lose the Competiveness: Yes, it is a cut throat world when it comes to getting to the top. That doesn’t mean we need to trample each other over on the path or throw each other off the mountain on our way up. Everyone has their own skills and methods for how they will achieve their goals. Actually, everyone has a different place on the mountain they want to reach. Some are content with journey, others with making it midway, and for some the top is the only spot to be. Just because you beat someone to a certain point doesn’t mean you are strong enough to stay there or ready to move to the next one. The point I am trying to make is quit worrying about where the women around you are climbing to and worry about the point you want to reach and how you will achieve it. Quit sizing up others and evaluate yourself. What are your strengths and weaknesses? How can you improve your skills?
2. Fight the Jealousy: She received a promotion at work, but instead of congratulating her and going back to what you need to do to move ahead; you run to a corner and sulk (or worse to a co-worker). Remember this — when all you do is sit around, watch and fret about what someone else is doing, you miss out on the opportunities that you need to learn, grow, and improve. In other words, your jealousy is only hurting you.
3. Stop the Cattiness: This actually goes hand in hand with jealousy. The first thing, one does when the green eyed monster is awaken inside them – attack the person. What makes her so great? Who did she sleep with? I can do this better. I know how to do that better. Well, if that is the case, go use your energy to do it — better. Stop leaving snarky comments, writing nasty posts, and/or unfollowing someone because they did something to get a step closer to their dreams.
4. Follow/Friend: The simplest way to support someone is to follow/friend them online. Bloggers, women small business owners, authors, etc . . . greatly appreciate all of the followers of their Facebook and Twitter pages.
5. Communication:: If you have followers/friends on social media sites they are not there just to make you feel popular. They would like to get to know you and vice versa. When you send out your thoughts and someone replies – kindly reply back. Show the appreciation you have for those who follow you by thanking them, having meaningful updates, and by being receptive to conversation.
6. Comments: This is beyond the normal “comment on blogs” conversation many are having. This is about relationships. You and a co-worker are friends on Facebook. She makes a status about the great news she received at work – let’s say she was given a great review. No one makes a comment on the status. How do you think she feels? How would you feel? A simple “congrats” comment can do so much for a person, as can a kind word when a “friend” is having a bad day.
7. Share: You read a blog post you liked or a tweet that you thought was inspiring, obviously, the next logical thing to do is share it with your network. Well, think of other ways you can share and support. If you know of a job opening at your place of employment, how about sharing it with others on Linkedin or Branched Out — there may be someone in your network in need of employment. Do you know of a free family event? Share it with your Facebook friends (and family) — many parents, living on a budget, are looking for fun and free activities for their children.
8. Introductions: Online communities and sites such as Linkedin allow making connections simple. If you have two “connections” that would benefit from meeting one another; make the introduction.
9. Have Respect: Do protect your connections. Value your connections as you would any of the precious items you possess. Only share (introduce) them with those who are truly worthy of such great connections. Also, respect the opinions and lives of others. Networking is just for that – networking. It is not for you to convert sinners into saints.
10. Promote: Yes, number 6 on the list is share, which would seem the same as promoting – it isn’t. Promoting is helping those who are small business owners or bloggers or authors promote their product . . . free of charge. If you have a friend/colleague who has self-published a book which you read and loved. Tell everyone about it on Facebook, Twitter, and on the blog. This is more than just sharing – this is promoting. Believe me your friends will appreciate the free marketing because paid advertising can be expensive.
There you have it 10 easy ways to provide online support to other women. What other ways can we support each other online? How have you provided online support to others? What does online support mean to you?
Share with your girlfriends!